Why Assassin's Creed Doesn't Need to Be a Hit According to Ubisoft
Before 2016, video game movies have never exactly struck it big at the box office. Before this year, only one movie, 2001's Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, had earned more than $100 million ($131.1 million) at the domestic box office, but this summer, The Angry Birds Movie took in $105.1 million domestically and $337.5 million worldwide, while Warcraft became the highest-grossing video game adaptation worldwide with $430 million and counting, although only $46.5 million of that tally has come from the domestic market. Later this year, another high-profile video game movie will hit theaters, Assassin's Creed, although it seems that the company behind the game itself isn't expecting it to be a huge hit.
Assassin's Creed features an all-star cast including Michael Fassbender in the dual role of Callum Lynch and his 15th Century descendant Aguilar, alongside Marion Cotillard, Jeremy Irons, Brendan Gleeson and Michael K. Williams. During a recent interview with MCV, Ubisoft's European chief Alain Corre revealed that they aren't planning on making a lot of money from this movie, but it will be good for their brand's image. Here's what he had to say below.
"We are not going to earn a lot of money from it. It is a lot more a marketing thing, it is also good for the image of the brand. Although we will make some money, it is not the purpose of this movie. The purpose is to bring Assassin's Creed to more people. We have our core fans, but what we would like is to put this franchise in front of a lot more people who, maybe, will then pick up future Assassin's Creed games."
Assassin's Creed has been given a December 21 release date, with production wrapping back in January and the first trailer arriving in May. This adaptation will be facing plenty of competition at the box office, going up against Sony's sci-fi thriller Passengers, Universal's animated movie Sing, STX Enetertainment's sci-fi adventure The Space Between Us and 20th Century Fox's Why Him. The movie will also open just five days after Disney's highly-anticipated Star Wars spinoff Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Shortly after the initial interview was published, Ubisoft backed away from Alain Corre's interview by releasing a new statement.
"Ubisoft's core vision is to create top quality entertainment and experiences. For the Assassin's Creed film, we have worked closely with our partners at New Regency and 20th Century Fox as well as the talented cast and production team from the very beginning to ensure we deliver a quality experience to ours fans. We strongly believe the Assassin's Creed brand has this cross-over appeal that will please both video games fans and movie goers."
The supporting cast includes Ariane Labed, Callum Turner, Brian Gleeson, Matias Padin and Denis Menochet. Justin Kurzel, who directed both Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard in Macbeth last year, directs from a script by Bill Collage, Adam Cooper and Michael Leslie. We also reported in March that New Regency is already moving forward and developing Assassin's Creed 2, with Michael Fassbender expected to return, although the studio has not set a release date at this time.