Warcraft Movie Director Says More People Appreciate The Movie Now, But Sequels Remain Unlikely

Warcraft 2 and 3 may never happen.

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The 2016 Warcraft movie from director Duncan Jones made more than $433 million worldwide, but despite that huge box office number, it appears the sequels that Jones wanted to make are not going to happen--and there are a number of reasons why that is.

Jones told Collider that he would have "loved" to make two more movies to complete the trilogy, but it's looking unlikely that the follow-ups will be made. Despite that, Jones said he thinks Warcraft is being appreciated more and more now, as time goes on.

"It really would have been pretty special," he said of his plans for a trilogy. "It's unfortunate now, you gotta try and go with your harp on these things. I made the film as best I could on the first film hoping that it would connect with an audience. I genuinely think that in retrospect and as time has moved on, people are starting to appreciate the film than maybe the critics did when it first came out but unfortunately I don't think we're going to get to make any more."

Jones said this three-film arc for Warcraft would have included further storytelling for Gul'dan and Thrall, and on a wider level, how the orcs left their home world to live in Azeroth.

Also in the interview, Jones spoke about the challenging nature of working with so many different stakeholders to get Warcraft made.

"It was an absolute… The essence of studio filmmaking," he said. "I got a chance to experience multiple studios takes on what a film of this size should be on one movie because it was originally. Originally, we were Warner Brothers, I was working with Atlas, I was working with Universal. It was working with Legendary, I was working with Blizzard and obviously Blizzard were very passionate about what film should be because they are who had been with the game for so long and they didn’t want to detract from that. So there were more points as to what the film needed to be. And then Legendary was bought by Wanda while we were making the movie. So it was a unique moment in time for experiencing what kind of craziness studio filmmaking could be."

Warcraft only made $47.4 million in the US and Canada, but it made $386.3 million--or 89.1 percent of its total box office revenue--from overseas markets. China accounted for a massive $213.5 million of the movie's international grosses. On a worldwide basis, Warcraft is the 258th biggest movie ever, ahead of Detective Pikachu and numerous other franchise movies.

Warcraft had a reported budget of $160 million, so $433 million in worldwide grosses sounds like a success story. However, as ScreenRant points out, Hollywood studios only make about 25 percent of a film's gross in China, so Warcraft's $213.5 million in China netted Legendary only $53.4 million. In America, a film studio typically takes home around 50 percent off the box office. Using that math, ScreenRant estimates that Warcraft actually only made $145 million, which is below its reported production budget; and this number doesn't even count marketing expenses. Looking at the numbers through that light, it's not hard to understand why the Warcraft sequels aren't coming.

Warcraft stars Travis Fimmel, Paula Patton, Ben Foster, Dominic Cooper, Toby Kebbell, Robert Kazinsky, Clancy Brown, and Daniel Wu.

As for Jones, he went on to release the low-budget sci-fi movie Mute for Netflix in 2018. It is in the same universe as his 2009 breakout hit Moon starring Sam Rockwell. Jones had said he had plans for a third movie in that connected universe, but for now, it's only a graphic novel. "

"It's going to be a tricky one to finance in this era where original material on a bigger budget is difficult to get made, so I definitely want to do the graphic novel so at least it will exist in some form," he told Polygon. "Then, hopefully, if people read the graphic novel and get really excited about it, I’m gonna try and use that as a way to leverage getting the movie made."

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Ovirew

I remember people heavily criticizing the movie when it came out. To be fair, it didn't really grab my attention like it should have.

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Wretch1d

I really enjoyed it and dont get the hate

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jenovaschilld

Here are two really good movie reviews that go into detail, and explain why the wow movie was just so bad.MOVIEBOB review wow movieandRolling Stones movie review of wow filmit doesn't pander the films origins just why film and movies are all about storytelling and why people that make video game movies always forget the whole 'storytelling' part.

MY biggest problem with the movie was that it had no clear defined movie structures. in Act one it threw as many characters as it could fit but really did not ground any of the protagonist or antagonists in any caring way, that fans of the game or newbies would even care or get invested in. Act 2 is building and structure - to allow growth and motives. From LOTR, to Mad Max to Marvel movies, they fantasy/action you have the more important the 2nd act needs to be. But the wow movies kept having to go back and restructure its main cast, introduce new charactes, lands, and settings. This is just bad editing and directing. Act 3 is your culmination, and ending, which again wow movie needed to do more world building to try and explain its first two acts. Leaving us with a quick finish and no satisfying resolve. Another bad blunder by editing and directing.

The story is actually not that bad, one that has been told many times before. But what this movie really needed to do would be to start off small. Just like the game. Start small on one or two characters/antagonists build up their motives (why they give a shit and why the audience should also), then build the world and motives by 2nd act. I am not saying wow movie needs or has to be as good as the hunt for red october but it at least needs to build enough meaning - after all this is a movie or storytelling, not a 90min ad for the game. Which is more in line of what they made, and ad for a game.

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ballaShotCaller

It was a great movie except for one thing. The acting and the editing of it. There are some C grade scenes there with no emotion and the orcs had wayy more emotion than the humans.

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Nefastuss

To me it was an okay movie. Not terrible, not great.

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ThePlantain

As someone who knew absolutely nothing about Warcraft, I guess it wasn't so bad. Although some things were a bit off for me.

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darklordvyperx

I really wish there was a sequel. I hate when films end on a cliffhanger and then we never get to see the finished product. Proof positive that Hollywood is more concerned with money than it Is with the art.

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Stunningham

@darklordvyperx: Sequels typically make less than the original movie. You want to make something to continue a trilogy when the 2nd and 3rd will likely lose money just to be artistic go ahead and front the project. Good luck.

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NorthernDruid

The movie was really good, it was great to see Medhiv struggle with his (literal) demons having only encountered him in WC3 up until then. It was a fandom movie of course, so most of it's quality came from the portrayal of the world from the games. Some of the dialogue was a little bit of classic cheese but that's not a negative quality if you enjoy it.

Mostly it struggled with setting the location of things, it really needed a few map-pans with something to show where things were happening in relation to one another (as well as show where in the eastern continent things even were).

At least WC1 and WC2 are on GoG now, and with the remake of WC3 it's not as if a continuation of the story is gonna be hard to find and I imagine it's gonna be easier to get in at WC2 than WC1.

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Ember_to_Flame

Watched in theaters, 3d, oh man I regret that. Disliked the movie so much, but then I got it on blu ray n watched it at home without 3d and it wasn't as bad, 3d ruined the movie completely(and most other movies too but that is just what I think.) Never ever in my life gonna see a 3d movie in theaters again.

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darklordvyperx

@ember_to_flame: yeah, I remember seeing avatar and clash of the titans in 3d and they were terrible in 3d.

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Ember_to_Flame

@darklordvyperx: Oof, I almost went avatar 3d, but I managed to get a 2d show despite my friends wanting 3d. So happy about that decision. Amazing movie. Skipped 3d on clash too now when I come to think about it. 3d kinda ruins the experience immensely.

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gamingdevil800

@ember_to_flame: 3D movies are just as bad as they were when cinema's tried using the red/blue 3D glasses in the early 2000's. Most movies put barely any effort into them which results in you watching a movie except it's way darker due to the glasses with barely anything popping out of the screen, not worth the extra money. 3D has almost died out in cinema's like the majority of showings are 2D now where I am.

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Ember_to_Flame

@gamingdevil800: Majority? ALL shows were in 3d last time I was in cinema like last year or something, Warcraft never went on 2d here in any cinema, maybe in the US what do I know. I think there's like a very few titles that has some 2d shows. I really like a lot of colors but 3d feels very colorless.

Truly hope the trend dies out.

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gamingdevil800

@ember_to_flame: My region of the UK it's all 2D apart from the major blockbuster which has a couple of 3D showings like Endgame and Far From Home.

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Nefastuss

@gamingdevil800: Can't stand 3D movies, they are freaking dark.

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Elranzer

The Warcraft movie was boringly about only Humans and Orcs. There were brief cameos of the other races at the end but that was it. The visuals for a Warcraft movie were disappointing.

It's pretty bad when a random in-game FMV from World of Warcraft is more impressive than an actual Warcraft movie. Perhaps Blizzard should just get their excellent FMV team on making a full movie. Square Enix already does this.

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darklordvyperx

@Elranzer: I've been saying this for years! A full blown in house Blizzard cinematic film would be fantastic!

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JusstaDrop

I’ve walked out of two movies in my life: Amazing Spider-Man (couldn’t handle hearing the Spider-Man origin story told again and that movie birthed my ability to literally guess the lines before they were said in future content) and this movie. It was terrible. It was all over the place.

Avatar image for Barighm
Barighm

Doesn't help when your own actors don't seem particularly enthusiastic about their roles.

But this kind of project should never have left Blizzard's hands in the first place. Their CG shorts look amazing, and some of them aren't half bad. Make it a CG animated movie straight from Blizzard (same for Uncharted from ND) and I'll bet it will be...well, at least a little better.

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Elranzer

@Barighm: Which is what Square Enix does.

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Thanatos2k

The movie flopped for a reason.

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happynoodleboy7

It was a pretty enjoyable movie, I don't regret watching it. Kinda disappointing to think it won't get a sequel but I'm not going to mope about it.

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linthenius

The movie was always pretty good. Not something i'd call best movie of all time levels. But still a great movie. Problem is you would miss out on basically everything if you never played the original games.

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Barighm

@linthenius: Well, that's kind of the point of origin movies. They're supposed to familiarize audiences with the characters and world. Warcraft's biggest problem is that it expected audiences to digest a little too much for an origin movie.

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JasperWest

As a fan of Warcraft I loved the movie, but I fully understand that unless you like and know the games lore and characters, very little exists to like in the film. It's a shame, if anything I'd like Blizzard to work with Duncan Jones and maybe maybe make a series of short films to finish the films story.

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el_swanno

@jasperwest:

It seemed like a movie that was very much made with the fans in mind. I really liked it but I found the human characters a little forgettable. The orcs were great.

I was kinda looking forward to the sequels but I figured they were never going to happen when the film didn’t become the next Lord Of The Rings.