'Call of Duty' trademarked for films

Five months after first hints, Activision registers name of its popular shooter series for use with "pre-recorded movies"; new Modern Warfare 2 trailer inside.

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In May, outspoken Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick told The Hollywood Reporter that his company was toying with the idea of a reality TV show based on its Guitar Hero series. The same article quoted an anonymous source inside Activision as saying that another of the publisher's megahits, Call of Duty, was "being talked about for the big screen."

The new Modern Warfare 2 trailer shows the White House under siege by a lot more than the press corps.
The new Modern Warfare 2 trailer shows the White House under siege by a lot more than the press corps.

Now, it appears that Activision has taken the first concrete step toward making a Call of Duty film. According to a US Patent & Trademark Office filing uncovered by the appropriately named blog Trademork, the publisher has trademarked the term "Call of Duty" for use in "pre-recorded movies featuring comedy, drama, action, adventure, music, theatrical performances and/or animation."

Activision's filing was made on September 21 and was still in process at the USPTO as of September 30. News of its existence comes the day after the publisher gave the world a taste of what a Call of Duty movie might look like with a two-minute trailer for Modern Warfare 2. The sneak peek at the game, due out November 10, has a cinematic sweep, with US forces fighting both RPG-wielding guerrillas and Russian terrorists committing an airport massacre. It ends with a literal bang, showing Washington, DC, as a war-torn, flaming ruin.

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