Minecraft, the world’s most popular sandbox mining and survival game is set to become a major Hollywood motion picture. The announcement was made by Markus Alexej Persson, co-founder of Mojang AB and former lead designer of the game. He made the announcement on Twitter on Thursday, stating that Warner Bros. would be working with Mojang, the game studio to bring the expansive open sandbox world of Minecraft to the big screen. Roy Lee, producer of The Lego Movie and co-producer of both parts of the animated feature How to Train Your Dragon is expected to co-produce the movie along with Jill Messick, executive producer of Mean Girls, Frida and She’s All That. Producer Jon Berg, post-production executive on Edge of Tomorrow will represent Warner in the deal.
Persson, who goes by the twitter handle Notch spoke with entertainment website IGN Entertainment and stated that he does not have much to say except to confirm that Minecraft was in discussions with WB. “How often do you get to be part of making a movie?” he asked. Minecraft is not the first game to crossover from the world of video games to becoming a motion picture. Ever since the remake of Super Mario Brothers in 1996, Tomb Raider, Resident Evil, Max Payne, Prince of Persia, Doom and Hitman, some of the most popular games across genres have made it big at the box office. Warner Bros. has been actively seeking to produce video game crossover films. Back in November 2013, the studio is believed to have contacted British producer David Jonathan Heyman to work on bringing Temple Run, an infinite running game by Imangi Studios to the big screen.
Bringing Minecraft to the big screen will be the first time an open-world sandbox game is made into a full length live-action feature. While the game does not have a unidirectional plot, Mojang has programmed an ending to the game when a player defeats the final boss of one of the world’s two alternate dimensions, Ender Dragon. While the game is mostly known for its elaborate in-game structures and building capabilities, the game’s survival mode and boss fights are expected to form the basis of the movie’s plot. Minecraft features a vast variety of enemies and terrains that Warner Bros. will look to exploit while translating the game to film.
As Minecraft begins its journey from being a wildly popular video game to becoming a motion picture, Persson is reported to have refused to make any statement about the staff Warner Bros. would choose in the production of the film. The game has made a significant mark in the world of gaming, with over 100 million users registered on the Minecraft website and over 35 million copies of the game sold across all platforms. The game is available for PC, Xbox, PlayStation and portable devices. Persson’s confirmation of Minecraft being made into a film comes nearly a month after Mojang shut down the Kickstarter campaign of a fan-made Minecraft film, Birth of a Man: A Minecraft Film. Whether the Warner Bros. film does justice to the game with a cult following remains to be seen.
By Grace Stephen