- Hollywood is mining video games for IP to boost streaming services.
- Video-game movies have a history of flopping, but there are plenty of notable shows in the works.
- Game industry professionals Insider has spoken to think TV is the best medium for adaptations.
When Sony’s “Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City” opened in theaters over the Thanksgiving holiday, it flopped hard.
The movie grossed $5.3 million in its first three-day weekend in the US. It’s since made just $13 million domestically and $24 million worldwide. It’s also received poor reviews and has a 28% Rotten Tomatoes critic score.
It marks another commercial and critical failure for a video-game movie in a genre with a rich history of them.
But Hollywood still has plenty of game adaptations on the way. The most notable ones are being developed for the small screen, though.
Game sales hit a record $56.9 billion in 2020, according to a report by the research firm NPD. As media companies compete for well-established IP to attract (or keep) subscribers for their
services, they’ve set their sights on the video-game industry.
And as long as Hollywood keeps mining games for content, industry professionals are glad it’s embracing TV.
“We play our favorite games for hundreds of hours,” said Christian Linke, a creative director at Riot Games and the showrunner of Netflix’s new “League of Legends” animated series, “Arcane.” “Movies don’t do the experience justice when you only stick with that world for two hours.”
Mac Walters, the project director for “Mass Effect: Legendary Edition” — a remastered collection of the sci-fi series’ original three games — told Insider during an interview this year that a planned “Mass Effect” movie was scrapped a decade ago.
“If you’re going to tell a story that’s as fleshed out as ‘Mass Effect,’ TV is the way to do it,” Walters said. “There’s a natural way it fits well with episodic content.”
Insider looked at the major video-game shows in the works for streaming platforms, from Paramount+‘s “Halo” to Netflix’s “Assassin’s Creed.”