The Assassin’s Creed film has been gestating for quite a while now at New Regency. Rumors about the film started appearing as early as 2011, but in recent years, the project has made serious progress. Originally, the film was supposed to come out this year, but delays pushed filming to this September, with a projected December 2016 release date.
Details on the film itself remain scarce. So far, there’s only been rumors as to the movie’s possible setting and whether or not it will feature any characters from the games. Nevertheless, the film’s stars have been cast, with Michael Fassbender (best known as Magneto in the X-Men films) and Oscar winner Marion Cotillard headlining.
Although production doesn’t start for another few months, promotional material for Assassin’s Creed has already started popping up. The movie’s first poster is now available, offering a potential hint as to just how faithful the film will be to the source material. The poster depicts an eagle surrounded by the familiar graphical anomalies associated with the Animus, a high-tech device that essentially allows characters to travel into their ancestors’ pasts.
This could indicate that Eagle Vision, the gameplay mechanic in which the player’s character is able to highlight important objects and information in the environment, could be playing a role in the film. If the filmmakers are willing to include one of the stranger aspects of the series’ lore in its film adaptation, it stands to reason that other elements that define the franchise – such as the assassin’s hidden blades, rooftop parkour, and daring leaps of faith – would be used as well.
If Assassin’s Creed: The Movie comes out, it will be the first finished project from Ubisoft Motion Pictures, a division that’s also prepping films based on Far Cry, Ghost Recon, Rabbids, Splinter Cell, and Watch Dogs. By running its own studio, Ubisoft maintains control over the film adaptations of its intellectual properties, and will hopefully be able to put out quality films. It also allows Ubisoft to make sure that someone like Uwe Boll (the notoriously terrible film director who created a horrendous Far Cry adaptation) doesn’t get anywhere near the movies.
It almost seems as though the once dreaded “video game movie” is undergoing a renaissance. Numerous video game to film adaptations are set for release in 2016; in addition to Assassin’s Creed, movies based on popular games like Ratchet & Clank, Sly Cooper, and Warcraft will all come out next year. Historically, cinematic adaptations of video games haven’t done that well either creatively or financially, but with video game companies exercising more control over their properties, the chances of getting a good game-to-film project off the ground is seeming increasingly likely.
Assassin’s Creed: The Movie is scheduled to hit theaters December 21st, 2016.