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Ubisoft, one of the most influential video game creators of our time, is breaking into the film business. In May of 2012, the Paris-based Ubisoft created Ubisoft Motion Pictures with the goal of creating films of their video game franchises of Assassin’s Creed, Splinter Cell, and Ghost Recon.
Ubisoft will have full creative control over every aspect of all three films: writer, director, cast, everything. So far there is no director or release date yet, but it has been confirmed that Michael Fassbender, Magneto in ‘X-Men First Class’ will star and co-produce the Assassin’s Creed film.
“Ubisoft has decided to never sell its licenses because it wants to have creative control,” stated Ubisoft Motion Pictures CEO Jean-Julien Baronnet. “There are strong licences and investments in important games that require us to diversify sources of franchise value and synergies.”
Ubisoft has decided to extend to the big screen because, as Baronnet stated, “humans convey more emotion on the big screen. And it shouldn’t be forgotten that actors bring viewers into the cinemas.” Baronnet also expressed that Ubisoft was worried about how another company would change the story. “We prefer making the film a 100 percent by ourselves instead of having a studio that could betray the spirit of the license, because this would have a negative effect on the image of the game.”
It is completely understandable why Ubisoft is being a little obsessive about holding on to the creative rights of the trilogy. The story is extremely intricate with several well developed characters. The Assassin’s Creed story, first launched in 2007, surrounds the character Desmond Miles who lives in the present day. He is descended from several individuals who were a part of a group known as the Assassins. The Assassins archenemies are the Templars, a rivalry which dates back thousands of years.
In present day, the Templars and Assassins are still at war; the Assassins protecting freedom while the Templars attempt to control the populace through mind control and manipulation. Desmond Miles, a former member of the Assassins, is kidnapped by the Templars and put in a machine known as the Animus so he can revisit the memories of his ancestors in order for the Templars to find a weapon hidden long ago.
The first ancestor, Altair, whose memories he explores was the plot of Assassin’s Creed, the first game, and was set in the Crusades. The second ancestor, Ezio Auditore, is featured in Assassin’s Creed II, Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, and Assassin’s Creed Revelations in which Ezio explores Renaissance Italy and Constantinople. The upcoming Assassin’s Creed III will feature a new ancestor, Connor, who lives in eighteenth century America and is half Native American and half European.
Ubisoft has made a deal with Sony that they will have complete control over the production of the film, but that also means that they must invest in it as well. Prior to the production of the Assassin’s Creed film, Ubisoft released two other short films that fell in before the release of Assassin’s Creed II and after Assassin’s Creed Revelations, the latest game. ‘Assassin’s Creed: Lineage’ was the first film and explained the background of Ezio, the second generation Desmond explores. ‘Assassin’s Creed: Embers’ is the latest film that explains the end of Ezio’s life.
This latest Assassin’s Creed Film will be the first produced by Ubisoft Motion Pictures, the new branch created by Ubisoft. Ubisoft Motion Pictures will also have a television division within it to create such shows as “Raving Rabbids,” an adaptation of one of their video games.
With the fantastic story and incredible game franchise we have all come to know and love, this film could be one of the best the year it is released (whenever that may be). Especially since all fans know that Ubisoft will do the story justice with the film – without adding elements that were not there to begin with or taking out important story elements that are necessary to the development. According to screenrant.com Ubisoft is hoping for a “long-term film franchise” which would definitely be necessary to cover all the material. However, the first film will have to do very well, not only with fans but with non-fans; here’s to hoping for the best.