Nintendo Looks to Enter Movie Business Within 5 Years

Steven Bogos

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Nintendo Looks to Enter Movie Business Within 5 Years

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You will be seeing Mario and pals on the big screen within the next 5 years, according to Nintendo's CEO.

In an interview with Japanese business newspaper Dr. Serkan Toto [http://www.asahi.com/articles/ASJ4Z0R76J4YPLFA002.html]), Nintendo CEO Tatsumi Kimishima made some bold claims about Nintendo's burgeoning movie division, namely, that we will see an official Nintendo movie within the next 5 years. Specifically, Kimishima said (rather vaguely) that the first Nintendo movie wouldn't be released this year, but wouldn't take five years.

Nintendo first mentioned its plans for the silver screen back in January [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/165921-Nintendo-Boss-Discusses-2016-NX-Plans], when Kimishima said an aggressive expansion of its intellectual property included anime and movies.

For those of you horrified at the thought of another live-action Super Mario Bros. [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Mario_Bros._(film)] disaster, Kimishima specifically brought up the 1993 movie as an example of why upcoming Nintendo films will not be live-action affairs. Instead he seems to prefer 3D CD/anime-type content where Nintendo should produce as much by itself as possible.

Kimishima did not hint at all as to what IP the first such Nintendo movie would be based on, however, Mario and Zelda were brought up as examples.

Source: Dr Serkan Toto [http://www.asahi.com/articles/ASJ5903YMJ58PLZB00Z.html]

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The Rogue Wolf

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Steven Bogos said:
For those of you horrified at the thought of another live-action Super Mario Bros. [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Mario_Bros._(film)] disaster, Kimishima specifically brought up the 1993 movie as an example of why upcoming Nintendo films will not be live-action affairs. Instead he seems to prefer 3D CD/anime-type content where Nintendo should produce as much by itself as possible.
Which instead horrifies me at the thought of another CGI Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within disaster.
 

Hawki

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Y'know, I started this post by saying that this isn't that good an idea, as very few of Nintendo's main franchises are story-driven, but considering how well Angry Birds is doing (well, "good" by the standards of VG movies at least), maybe stranger things can happen.
 

Bob_McMillan

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I hope this crashes and burns harder than the WiiU #edgy

Really though, I can't think of a single Nintendo property I would want on the big screen.
 

Samtemdo8_v1legacy

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Well a certain movie critic will be estatic at this news.

Me well depends:

A proper Mario movie can be done well. I mean Mario today has been a very transformative franchise. I mean all you have to do is adapt the story presentation of the RPG games like Paper Mario, Mario and Luigi, and the old Super Mario RPG and make a movie out if it.

Zelda is a little tricky because of all the game's structure. I mean are we really gonna sit through seeing Link going through each Dungeon to get the quest item? How I would structure it is Link would brave through 1 Dungeon and the quest item at the end is the Master Sword itself and then he challanges Ganon.

I am sorry but a Metroid movie is impossible. I mean are we really gonna see Samus shoot a door and take it seriously? And besides Metroid is at its best at its most minimalistic.

I am sure we don't need a Pokemon movie since well there are plenty.
 

Elfgore

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Pixels 2: Nintendo Strikes Back is coming shortly, everyone!

Well they at least did the somewhat smart thing and stuck with CGI and animated films. Still doesn't mean I find the idea smart. I don't think many people would go see a Legend of Zelda flick.
 

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Samtemdo8 said:
Well a certain movie critic will be estatic at this news.

Me well depends:

A proper Mario movie can be done well. I mean Mario today has been a very transformative franchise. I mean all you have to do is adapt the story presentation of the RPG games like Paper Mario, Mario and Luigi, and the old Super Mario RPG and make a movie out if it.

Zelda is a little tricky because of all the game's structure. I mean are we really gonna sit through seeing Link going through each Dungeon to get the quest item? How I would structure it is Link would brave through 1 Dungeon and the quest item at the end is the Master Sword itself and then he challanges Ganon.

I am sorry but a Metroid movie is impossible. I mean are we really gonna see Samus shoot a door and take it seriously? And besides Metroid is at its best at its most minimalistic.

I am sure we don't need a Pokemon movie since well there are plenty.
I think a Metroid movie could be done well possibly done in First person or just follow her as she struggles to survive and makes her way to mother brain.

Thing is I see it being possibly R rated considering how dark Metroid can get and its inspiration taken from the Alien Franchise.

Lone female struggling on a harsh planet where everything is trying to kill her sounds awesome as hell. Sense it will have a small cast you can pump all that extra money into the visuals and sets not to mention the horrifying sounds.

Main issue is we need a really fucking tall woman to play her and who can act
 

Hawki

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Samtemdo8 said:
Zelda is a little tricky because of all the game's structure. I mean are we really gonna sit through seeing Link going through each Dungeon to get the quest item? How I would structure it is Link would brave through 1 Dungeon and the quest item at the end is the Master Sword itself and then he challanges Ganon.
Zelda, I think, would be easy. In fact, due to how each game is self-contained from the others (bar the occassional sequel and reference), you could easily fit a LoZ movie on the timeline. And with that in mind, you can do whatever story you want, and tell it however you want. Cut out the 'gamey' bits, focus on story and character, and voila. You'll probably have at least a decent fantasy yarn. The main problem I'd say is hearing Link speak. Because...well, y'know...

Samtemdo8 said:
I am sorry but a Metroid movie is impossible. I mean are we really gonna see Samus shoot a door and take it seriously? And besides Metroid is at its best at its most minimalistic.
Um...eh...

In a Metroid movie's defense, I'll say that there's a precedent for more conventional storytelling if one considers the manga for instance. But in fairness, Metroid has a few things stacked against it:

-Most of the time, Samus is on her lonesome, and in a suit. So not only do you need a single character/actress capable of carrying a film by theirself for most of the run, but the visor, unless they do the Iron Man trick that's also been copied by Power Rangers, will hinder storytelling through body language.

-Metroid takes a fair amount of influence from Alien, at least in regards to setting and arguably themes. It's the same problem that Prince of Persia and possibly Warcraft had/will have. They're wearing their influences on their shoulder. We've seen swords and sandals in films for decades, and orcs are...well, orcs, even if Warcraft does something different than Tolkein.

-A film set in the Metroid universe with Samus as a someone in the background could work, but the general reaction to Federation Force seems to have shown that Metroid fans don't want that. I know there's other factors for said reaction, but, yeah. It also doesn't help that Other M is also frowned upon, when that also tried more conventional storytelling.

-Finally, as I've discussed elsewhere, I don't think the Metroid games I've played have ever been strong in terms of plot, apart from Fusion. It's part of why I've never been as enamored with Metroid as, say, Zelda. The Mario RPGs aside, would anyone clamor for a Mario game based on its story? Probably not.

The only light at the end of the tunnel is the fan film "The Sky Calls," but imagine making that feature length, and accessible to the general audience. And even that film is using 2001: A Space Oddysey as its frame of reference, and while I'm not fond of 2001 myself (like the book though), trying to top that would be a rigged game.
 

Buizel91

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Samtemdo8 said:
I am sure we don't need a Pokemon movie since well there are plenty.
Apparently, live action rights were being auctioned off not to long ago. Legendary Pictures had the highest bid, but Warner Bro's weren't far behind, With WB being described as "Aggressive". Sony were mentioned but the rumour is they want it to make movie games (as Sony does)
 

Something Amyss

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I can't wait for them to fuck it up so the rights can revert back to Marvel!

...seriously, though, I'd like to see Nintendo properties (some, anyway) as movies and hope they do a good job.
 

Saelune

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*sigh* One thing I loved about Nintendo was they were a gaming company. Microsoft and Sony do many things, not just gaming, but Nintendo is just gaming. But Iwata is gone and a business man is CEO, and suddenly its mobile this, movie that.
 

Mr.Mattress

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This is literally the best news I've heard from Nintendo all year. I know a lot of people are having doubts, but I honestly believe if anyone can make a good Mario movie, it would be Nintendo themselves. I'm looking forward to 2021!
 

Callate

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The premise of Super Mario Bros. is ridiculous. There are exactly two ways a movie can handle that.

1. "This premise is ridiculous. Let's run with that."

or

2. "This premise is ridiculous. Let's ignore it, and do something that works instead. If it works well, and we throw in a few shout outs to the original material, maybe the fans won't burn us out of spite."

The live-action movie said:

3. "This premise is ridiculous. Maybe it won't be ridiculous if we spend massive amounts of time trying to explain it to death."

...And then went on to prove, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that there were indeed two ways a movie could have handled it.

...Hopefully they won't do that again.

In any case, I'm game to see a movie made out of Zelda, Metroid, or even Kirby. I'm not saying that these are such amazing characters and worlds that they're begging to be made into motion pictures, but I wouldn't ignore them out of hand if they actually pulled through and made good movies out of 'em. And I don't think doing so is impossible.
 

Zontar

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Saelune said:
*sigh* One thing I loved about Nintendo was they were a gaming company. Microsoft and Sony do many things, not just gaming, but Nintendo is just gaming. But Iwata is gone and a business man is CEO, and suddenly its mobile this, movie that.
I don't know, Nintendo has had a long history of licencing out their IPs for series. Sure it was always for cartoons or anime, but they where often at least ok.

And besides, they're an entertainment company, in this day and age to be their size yet so corporately focused doesn't make much financial sense. Setting up subsidiaries and studios to branch out into other mediums makes sense both from a financial perspective and a storytelling one (Xenoblade Chronicles X, for example, felt like the type of game who's story I would have watched if it was an anime).

Plus given its sheer size as the largest dedicate publisher that hasn't done such diversification, it makes sense to enter that field. Everyone else is having their companies branch out into other mediums, and it's not like Nintendo's home office will lose its focus on gaming given it is unlikely to be dwarfed by other mediums. After all gaming is the medium with the highest level of revenue in the world.

It'll be fine. Worst case scenario Nintendo doesn't manage to make it work and returns focus onto gaming.
 

Zontar

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Mr.Mattress said:
This is literally the best news I've heard from Nintendo all year. I know a lot of people are having doubts, but I honestly believe if anyone can make a good Mario movie, it would be Nintendo themselves. I'm looking forward to 2021!
I'm hoping it works more for Xenoblade's sake. If they made a CG-anime series out of the setting used in X and the upcoming NX sequel, I'd watch the hell out of that. And you just know that if the movie division works they'll move on to TV shows.
 

Saelune

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Zontar said:
Saelune said:
*sigh* One thing I loved about Nintendo was they were a gaming company. Microsoft and Sony do many things, not just gaming, but Nintendo is just gaming. But Iwata is gone and a business man is CEO, and suddenly its mobile this, movie that.
I don't know, Nintendo has had a long history of licencing out their IPs for series. Sure it was always for cartoons or anime, but they where often at least ok.

And besides, they're an entertainment company, in this day and age to be their size yet so corporately focused doesn't make much financial sense. Setting up subsidiaries and studios to branch out into other mediums makes sense both from a financial perspective and a storytelling one (Xenoblade Chronicles X, for example, felt like the type of game who's story I would have watched if it was an anime).

Plus given its sheer size as the largest dedicate publisher that hasn't done such diversification, it makes sense to enter that field. Everyone else is having their companies branch out into other mediums, and it's not like Nintendo's home office will lose its focus on gaming given it is unlikely to be dwarfed by other mediums. After all gaming is the medium with the highest level of revenue in the world.

It'll be fine. Worst case scenario Nintendo doesn't manage to make it work and returns focus onto gaming.
Worst case scenario, Nintendo is very successful in other fields and shifts focus. I'm less worried about movies than their growing attempts to make it in the mobile market, but I'm more worried they will make a lot of money in mobile and focus on that than fail and lose money. As long as say, Pok?mon's main entries stay on a real handheld, fine, but the second a main pokemon game has microtransactions, the series and my hopes will die for me. I want to be overly pessimistic and wrong and everything stay fine by the way. Id rather overreact to nothing than accept mediocrity that so many others have done.
 

Aiddon_v1legacy

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It seems like Nintendo wants as much creative control as they can get. And considering the American film industry's history I can't blame them. I wouldn't be surprised if they get studios like Production I.G., Wit Studios, Studio Bones, Satelight, and Shaft on it. Though some series I couldn't see being compressed into two hours like Zelda or Fire Emblem (those would probably work better as OVAs or series).
 

KoudelkaMorgan

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Well Samus is 6'3'' 198lbs canonically, without armor. Or used to be at least before Other M. Now I think Taylor Swift could play her.
 

flying_whimsy

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I can't help but worry that this would go the way of sony's failed movie endeavors. Just the same, since it is nintendo I figure they would make a killing no matter how bad the movie (see also, the old legend of zelda animated series). Granted, pokemon makes nintendo tons of money, so I can see where they'd get the idea to branch out more and do it themselves.

I guess this is just a symptom of how the games industry has been slowly following in the shadow of the movie industry. Between Sony, Blizzard, and Valve making tons of cinematic things (even if they end up just as short videos) I think nintendo was starting to feel left out. After all, it's probably so much easier to make a movie compared to a game.

Too bad all of nintendo's main characters are mutes. But hey, it worked for Wall-e.