Video game adaptations are generally the worst of the worst when it comes to movies. Few are any good, but some manage to gain cult notoriety. The last video game title you’d suspect would get the film treatment might be the block-dropping game Tetris. However, we were all proven wrong when it was announced that a movie based on the video game was heading into production.
Developed by Threshold Entertainment and Larry Kasanoff, who was a producer on the Mortal Kombat movies of the ’90s (as well as various other MK-related titles) and movies like True Lies and Strange Days, the film has managed to find the necessary funding to get made. But not only that, it now looks like it could become a trilogy. More on the story below.
Deadline says “The project is eyed as an $80 million China-U.S. co-production under Threshold Global Studios, a new banner formed by Bruno Wu and producer Larry Kasanoff.” The studio has been working on the film adaptation with The Tetris Company for over a year, for what we can only assume to be on making a story more interesting than just waiting for the one I-shaped block to save us all.
And it only gets weirder from here. The plan is to release Tetris as a trilogy, with the film shooting in China and other locations in 2017. The fact that Chinese cast will be featured in the ensemble pic that’s billed as a sci-fi thriller is not the least bit surprising considering that China is a major financial partner in this project. Often times to make sure a film is a hit overseas, particularly China, a Chinese actor or actress will be cast. Kasanoff tells the site that it’s “not at all what you think; it will be a cool surprise.”
There really isn’t much else to the game besides fitting blocks together and being disappointed when the next piece you are going to get isn’t the one you want. In 2014, Kasanoff said “Tetris is the teeny tip of an iceberg that has intergalactic significance.” So it should be interesting to see how he ties the global and intergalactic aspects together for one film.
While some of us may be pessimistic about this, we should be aware that there has been somewhat of a resurgence in the video game adaptation business as Sony’s The Angry Birds Movie and the upcoming Warcraft from Universal are all hitting theaters this year. So maybe if they find the right person to pen the script, the Tetris movie could be good. But many would defer us to the long-running history of bad video game movie adaptations if we expect the movie to be a box office hit.
No word yet on when the movie will be released.