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With just a week before Assassin’s Creed III hits shelves, Ubisoft has some even bigger Assassin’s Creed news to announce. After bringing in Michael Fassbender back in July, the series’ first motion-picture adaptation has found a financier and distributor.
New Regency will co-produce the Assassin’s Creed movie with Ubisoft Motion Pictures, the French gamemakers’ film arm that it developed in order to retain some creative control over film versions of its properities. 20th Century Fox will distribute the film.
Fassbender is still attached to both produce and star, which without question played a big part in getting this deal done, as Variety notes. Fox makes a lot of sense given Fassbender’s biggest films, X-Men: First Class and Prometheus, are Fox properties, and New Regency just shot Steve McQueen’s star-studded feature Twelve Years a Slave, in which the actor plays a lead role.
New Regency president and CEO Brad Weston said that the company was eager to get in on the film, calling it “irresistible”:
“We wanted to do everything we could to secure the rights to ‘Assassin’s Creed,’ which Ubisoft has maintained with such care and quality over the years.”
New Regency will shoulder most of the production cost, allowing Ubisoft to assume less risk as it jumps into the world of major motion pictures for the first time. Considering the studio will still have a lot of creative control, New Regency must really believe in Assassin’s Creed and Ubisoft’s approach to bringing it to the big screen.
Ubisoft hopes to have all the pieces in place (i.e. script, director and cast) by next summer. Presumably, they would shoot the film soon thereafter. UMP CEO Jean-Julien Baronnet also said the plan is to also release a new game at the time of the film’s eventual release.
The news should be exciting for fans of the game, as unlike most video game adaptations, Ubisoft’s involvement means it will be much more loyal in terms of story and related elements, plus all the aesthetics of the game will be easier to re-create.
Hopefully, this deal between the gaming and movie industries will be the start of similar connections that allow for more video game films and ones with their artistic integrity intact.