Monster Hunter Movie Director Talks About Doing The Franchise Justice

From huge weapons to the US Army, Paul W.S Anderson says it's all part of his vision for bringing Monster Hunter to the big screen.

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The upcoming Monster Hunter movie divided fans when its first trailer focused on a group of US Army soldiers, showing more machine guns than giant swords. However, in a new interview with Polygon, director Paul W.S. Anderson talks about being a long-time fan of the game, and promises his film will do it justice.

"I've long been a fan of the video game. I discovered it in Japan 12 years ago when it was pretty much a Japanese-only phenomena, before the rest of the world discovered what Monster Hunter was," Anderson explained. "I started talking to Capcom 10 years ago about adapting it into a movie. This really is a long-term passion project of mine and I'm approaching it not just as a filmmaker but also as a kind of long-term player and fan of it."

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Now Playing: Monster Hunter Rise - Official Announcement Trailer

Anderson has worked extensively with Capcom in the past, as the director of six Resident Evil movies. He also directed the 1995 Mortal Kombat film--with Monster Hunter, this past experience allowed him to get ahead of the game.

Anderson says that the success of Monster Hunter World sent much of Hollywood scrambling to secure rights to a Monster Hunter film--only to find that he had done it years back. "Every Hollywood studio in the world was chasing Monster Hunter because suddenly they’re like, 'Oh, big sales! Lets go grab it!'" he said. "And they were all very disappointed to discover that I already had the rights to it."

People who are concerned about whether the movie will feel more like Monster Hunter than the clips we've seen so far can rest assured that the team behind the game at Capcom have had plenty of input on the film. "We talked through the script and what that would contain, what creatures would be in the movie, which landscapes would be in the movie," Anderson explained. "When we were designing the costumes, we'd send photographs of all of the costumes to Japan and they'd say 'Well, you know, the, the hunter's collar should be little smaller.' 'You know, the Admirals axe could be a bit bigger.'

He confirmed that both Ron Perlman and Tony Jaa's characters will wield suitably giant weapons--Perlman an axe and Jaa a greatsword and bow--while Milla Jovovich's character will have dual blades that the actress favors using in the game. Anderson also mentioned that the movie would feature the Palico character Meowscular Chef, who first appeared in Monster Hunter: World.

Anderson also explained why he inserted characters from the modern world, rather than just sticking to the Monster Hunter universe. "Milla is the avatar for the audience. She's the newbie going into this world," he explained. "She's the person from our world that knows nothing about the Monster Hunter world that’s going in for the first time. And what's nice for the game players about that is it kind of recreates your first experience when you first played Monster Hunter."

After a number of delays, Monster Hunter's release date has been moved foward into 2020. It'll be coming to cinemas on December 30 this year.

Monster Hunter fans who aren't sure about the movie still have plenty to look forward to in the franchise, with both Monster Hunter Rise and Monster Hunter Stories 2 planned to release on the Nintendo Switch in 2021.

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