Two weeks ago, Ubisoft announced the formation of Ubisoft Motion Pictures, its television and film production studio. Today, the company revealed to Variety that it is wasting no time turning its portfolio of successful game franchises into live-action--and animated--projects.
According to the show business trade, Ubisoft is currently working on three live-action feature films based on the Assassin's Creed, Splinter Cell, and Ghost Recon franchises. The series have sold 28 million units, 22 million units, and 17 million units life-to-date, according to the trade. The projects will leverage assets at all of Ubisoft's 23 internal studios, including special-effects house Hybride technologies (300, Watchmen), which it acquired in July 2008.
"Our strategy is not to diversify but to bolster the appeal of our franchises--that's why we want to make sure our films will reflect the brands accurately and consolidate our fan base while expanding beyond the games' primary target audience," Jean de Rivieres, senior VP of international marketing and distribution for Ubisoft Motion Pictures, told Variety.
Previously, Ubisoft made live-action shorts based on the Assassin's Creed series (see below) and Ghost Recon and had been in pre-production on a Splinter Cell film. Like Ghost Recon, that series was inspired by the writing of author Tom Clancy, which Ubisoft bought the multimedia rights to in March 2008.
In addition to the three feature films, Ubisoft is also apparently planning a series of animated shorts based on its comic line of Raving Rabbids video games. The series will be computer animated, in 3D, and will comprise of 78 seven-minute episodes.