Ever since realizing that people who buy video games also buy other things, Hollywood has been eager to get its greasy mitts all over that elusive gaming dollar. The only problem? With a couple of exceptions, games based on films are usually awful. The solution, you would have thought, would be to pick on a game with cinematic visuals, strong characters and a good, simple storyline to explore. Or you could pick a game with no plot at all, no characters and where everything is comprised of blocks. There is a lot of cocaine in Hollywood. Hence; Minecraft: The movie, an exciting if not mystifying project that just announced its first cast member.
Variety broke the story that rubber-faced funnyman Steve Carell of The Office (US) and 40 Year Old Virgin is currently in talks to join the cast. Other names attached to the project include Rob McElhenney, creator of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, who is slated to direct. McElhenney penned the script with Wonder Woman screenwriter Jason Fuchs, although, given the plotless nature of the game, we can’t even begin to guess what the story will be about.
It’s been a difficult birth for The Minecraft Movie. When Warner Bros. acquired the movie rights from Mojang Games back in 2014, they probably thought it was going to be a simple task to capitalize on the runaway success of The Lego Movie and squeeze a few dollars from Minecraft’s enormous fanbase. Instead, they ran into difficulties almost straight away, with Reel Steel Director Shawn Levy dropping out due to creative differences with Mojang. Apparently, they didn’t like the sound of his proposed idea for the film; a Goonies-style madcap adventure.
The movie is set to hit theaters on May 25th, 2019, Roy Lee will produce through Vertigo Entertainment, along with Jill Messick, the producer behind Mean Girls.
The Minecraft project is a bit of a mystery and this latest announcement has done little to shed light on it. Steve Carell can certainly bring the funny (and the serious, as 2014’s Foxcatcher attests), but this could just as easily end up being an Evan Almighty as a Despicable me. There are 100 million Minecraft players spread out across the globe. To them, the game represents limitless freedom and the power to let their unfettered imaginations loose on a world free of any restrictions. With so many people using the game to live out their own personal stories, it remains to be seen how many of them will pay to watch someone else’s