After publicly revealing who was heading up their newly formed film division, Ubisoft has commented on which of their many properties they’re planning to make into potential films. Much to everyone’s dismay, Ubisoft sadly isn’t planning on doing a film adaptation of Imagine: Babyz but instead are in the planning stages of conceiving film adaptations of three major Ubisoft franchises that core gamers love.
While nothing is concrete, Ubisoft Motion Pictures is currently preparing to take the Splinter Cell, Assassin’s Creed and Ghost Recon franchises to the world of films. Ubisoft has yet to partner with any studios to produce their films, but it appears that Ubisoft is looking to follow the format established by Marvel Pictures in how they hope to retain creative control instead of merely cashing a check and receiving a product that’s a complete disaster.
“We want to keep ownership, retain control over the film content, and we're open to work with studios on the development of our projects, and eventually collaborate on the pre-casting, pre-budget and script,” said Ubisoft Motion Pictures head Jean-Julien Baronnet. Currently Ubisoft Motion Pictures is working with the folks at Ubisoft’s core games branch to develop storylines for the AC, Splinter Cell and Ghost Recon projects that are in line with what gamers expect from the franchises.
It wasn’t revealed when Ubisoft Motion Pictures hopes to have any of their projects underway as far as filming is concerned, but scripts for the three projects they have in development now are supposed to be done by the end of the year. So pending if Ubisoft can come to an agreement with a studio this year, lock up deals with creative talent, and are serious about moving forward, we could see a Ubisoft film come out by 2013 or 2014 at the latest.
At this point I still don’t know what to think about Ubisoft’s motion picture endeavors. They’ve certainly chosen franchises that would make the best leap to become Hollywood blockbusters, but at the same time I can’t help but think about the ways a film adaptation of Splinter Cell or Assassin’s Creed could go wrong. If Ubisoft Motion Pictures is keen on retaining control over their projects, then maybe that means we won’t see Shia Labeouf pop up as Sam Fisher in the Splinter Cell film. But for the time being, I’ll remain cautiously optimistic about the future of Ubisoft Motion Pictures until some substantial developments are made.