Nintendo is returning to live-action films with a new movie based on The Legend of Zelda, the company announced today.
Nintendo is co-financing the production with Sony Pictures, but the Mario maker will be putting up more than half of the money for it. Sony Pictures will distribute the final product worldwide.
The film is being produced by Nintendo and Arad Productions, with Nintendo representative director Shigeru Miyamoto and Arad Productions chairman Avi Arad listed as producers.
Arad is best known for producing many of Marvel’s TV and film projects, from the X-Men and Spider-Man cartoons of the ’90s through to the Tom Holland Spider-Man films, as well as Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and its sequel.
He also has experience with video game adaptations, having produced the Double Dragon cartoon of the early ’90s before his comic book excursions, and more recently producing the Uncharted film, which also starred Tom Holland.
The on-screen talent has yet to be announced, but Wes Ball will be sitting in the director’s chair.
Ball directed the Maze Runner trilogy of movies, and is also handling directing duties for the upcoming Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes.
“By producing visual contents of Nintendo IP by itself, Nintendo is creating new opportunities to have people from around the world to access the world of entertainment which Nintendo has built, through different means apart from its dedicated game consoles,” Nintendo said in announcing the film.
“By getting deeply involved in the movie production with the aim to put smiles on everyone’s faces through entertainment, Nintendo will continue its efforts to produce unique entertainment and deliver it to as many people as possible.”
Nintendo began its current push into film back in 2016, when Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima said the company was in talks with a number of partners for an array of Nintendo movies.
While the Super Mario Bros. Movie with Illumination is the only project from that push to date, it has been an unqualified success, passing $1 billion in worldwide box office receipts after just a month in theaters.
Interestingly, when Kimishima first revealed the company’s movie ambitions, he said Nintendo wasn’t pursuing live-action films in light of the poorly received 1993 Super Mario Bros. movie starring Bob Hoskins and Dennis Hopper.