Currently the lightning mouse detective is taking the world by storm. So far, the initial response seems vaguely positive which as a video game adaptation…we take those. Video game film adaptations have a notorious history of being less than stellar. Most for reasons spanning from failing to understand the value of player autonomy in certain properties to being shameless cash-grabs trying to bank on a pre-sold concept and are doomed to fail from the start *Cough* sonic *Cough*. Coming up with a video game adaptation to live-action film is not an easy task, unless you’re me of course. I’ve seen this question floating around, it was most recently featured on the “Anime Podcast of Some Sort” and no spoilers but they gave some pretty good answers.
So, I guess let’s put me to task? Playing the role of producer I, K will answer the question of what video game would be adaptable into a successful film and in honor of the Anime Podcast of Some Sort I will be doing double duty, I will also pitch what existing media would make a great Anime series. This is meant to be in the name of good fun, so please feel free to participate in the comments, sharing your own suggestions, and your thoughts on mine and just not take anything to seriously. Okay. Okay, let the fun begin.
Adapting a Video Game to Live-Action Film
Reasoning: As being the creative driving force behind this project I want some room to breathe. I don’t want or have the desire to have this be a burden to make a shot for shot, 1:1 remake of the original game or what each individual fan has in their head. If anything, I’ve learned from the Sonic backlash is that you should embrace the iconic elements of the properties and incorporate them into a cinematic experience. I want to explore a world and characters that can serve as fun escapism without feeling robbed of the autonomy the player usually operates within the universe and characters. Finally, I don’t think we should take ourselves too seriously, because of the stigmatized impression of a video game movie I think it’s fine we’re not aiming for a cinematic masterpiece but a fun crowd pleaser that will earn some box office revenue. That is why I would adapt…..
Blade Runner/Judge Dredd meets Fast & the Furious/ Speed Racer
The high speed, high impact world behind the zero gravity (F-Zero) racing world is perfect for the big screen. Flipping the issue of player’s losing the ability to explore the world on their own terms; we’re going beyond the tracks and exploring the depths beyond the tracks of: Big Blue, Red Canyon, Fire Field, and Mute City. The same goes for our characters, no longer constraint to the cockpit, fans will finally get the likes of: Jody Summer, Samurai Goroh, and of course Captain Falcon himself in action. The F-Zero franchise has been a successful franchise with a proven history and has sold over 5 million copies as a franchise. However, oh Captain my Captain has been a mainstay in the Smash Series and one of its most recognizable and fan favorite characters making it not completely unreasonable to think there’s an audience that would want him on the big screen.
Besides being a fun sci-fi racing flick comparable to something like Ready Player One, this film would also explore Captain Falcon as the bad ass bounty hunter that can punch fire. It wouldn’t be Captain Falcon if we didn’t embrace the camp to a degree, I don’t know why I’m under the impression that I need to convince people that you can have a guy with fire combat skills and not make it look ridiculous when the MCU exists. How much money did the African kitty cat movie make again? MCU sets a general idea of tone and design costuming and world should seem sleek and practical, action should be taken seriously, but there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be allowed to have some fun along the way.
Who Should Direct?
I’d say it depends on the production philosophy and budget.
If you want to go full CGI- blue/green screen in studio production then I like James Wan (Aquaman, The Conjuring, Furious 7). James Wan is someone who after Aquaman I consider is visually savvy and understands how to create a substantial style to a film. I think Aquaman whether you consider it a good film, I think it’s visually busy and kind of epic which could work really well with the world of F-Zero.
However, if you wanted to do a hybrid production and take advantage of more practical effects and naturalistic landscapes then I’d be all for George Miller (Mad Max: Fury Road). Fury Road is stunning in how it blended real stunts and effects with more grandiose computer-generated visuals. I’m sure if this film could have some authentic grit, and stunning appeal to the aesthetic of the film that George Miller could crush this project just like what he did with Fury Road.
Casting the Captain
Remember how I said I didn’t want to have to fight against an iconic look of a character…Thank God my choice wears a helmet! I think it buys me some leeway, I honestly consider Metroid to be another solid choice maybe my second choice but c’mon we could cast Scarlett Johansson, or Charlize Theron, or genetically engineer a super model and some dumb guy going to start a petition to “cast a prettier actress”. I feel that if I get a strong jawline, and someone who has both action experience and some comedic charm then I’ve done my job.
My initial choices are Channing Tatum and John Cena. Both seem to look the part, would have enough star power to attract an audience, but are also probably more affordable than some other choices you might think such as The Rock, Chris Evans (hehe) or Ryan Reynolds.
I can visualize a teaser trailer dropping with a slow build up showing establishing shots, scenic shots of the world slowly building up the suspense of what exactly this is for, then you cut to black. The guitar rift is teased. Pan up reveal shot to show Captain Falcon, cue the Mute City theme ( similar to the 0:20 mark of the Brawl version) show some fast cutting action shots and badda bing badda boom you have some intrigue. I believe if this happened and if the visuals look good then I think fans will be ecstatic that the F-Zero franchise is not dead, and is being given some well deserved respect for an underappreciated franchise.
LOG LINE: Bounty hunter Captain Falcon infiltrates the world of zero gravity (F-Zero) racing as he tries to hunt down and save Mute City from the looming specter known as Black Shadow.
Adapting a Story into an Anime Series
Reasoning: I feel if you are going to create something in this medium, you should explore the artistry of it. You can really do spectacle imagery that might be too hard to achieve with practical lighting and set designs so let’s make something that lends itself to illustrating a picturesque world. Understanding that a majority of anime series end after one 12-13-episode season I’m going to offer something that seems satisfying at that pace and limitation. Finally, I will be doing something that is plausible and marketable, and I believe fulfills my desires for dramatic emotion, and something that has great thematical depth to swim around. That’s why my pitch is……
The Daughter of Evil
This series of songs lays the perfect outline for what I believe could be one hell of a series. For some background, the Aku no Monogatari (Story of Evil) is a collection of songs produced by mothy_Akuno-P performed with a synthetic vocalizer software. A vocaloid producer uses a special software that allows them to input melody and lyrics and then the program can produce a voice to perform the song. The most popular vocaloid voice is Hatsune Miku, I guess you could say we had something similar in the states but instead of having a cute anime girl we said “what if instead, we made a coked-up amphibian guy” wait what?
This series has since spawned light novels, a theatrical musical and has made cameo appearances at a Hatsune Miku concert and in a video game. All that is left is to send it home and make an anime series out of it. What attracts me about this series is the use of color. Each character seems to have some attachment to a certain color, and I love the idea of playing with those visual elements. I think there’s a lot of clever ways you can manipulate the environment to put emphasis on the tragedy of the series. I would want to take a Fanny and Alexander approach to it ( a reference I don’t expect everyone to get but I review it here if you’re curious to visually see what I’m talking about) and create this vibrant, glowing and gorgeous scenery and slowly overtime transition into something dull, barren, and empty. I would want the castle the initial place of comfort and nostalgia to almost look like the Ballroom from Beauty and the Beast and be an immaculate place of warmth and for every location to have a separate prominent color scheme as we transition throughout the story.
I initially called this The Daughter of Evil because while there are plenty of songs and lore to expand on, I want to mostly focus on the main story line of Riliane and her twin brother Allen. I think you can establish a tragic dichotomy between them; essentially one suffers from internal conflicts and musters up external actions while the other faces external conflicts but must come to terms with the consequences internally. I really think if you frame it right, Allen could make for a great tragic hero. Let’s put emphasis on the inner turmoil of Allen and concentrate and demonstrate him as someone who isn’t blindly complicit in his sister’s actions but someone aware of the atrocities. Having Allen be someone who increasingly grows uncomfortable with the position of being the tyrannical queen’s right hand man but someone who by the end of it becomes affirmed in his dedication to his loyal bond to his precious little twin would seem fitting for the character burdened with a cruel destiny.
Riliane also is an interesting character to study and expand upon as well being a message of corruptible power and immaturity. Riliane is tragic because as the story is inspired by the slanderous interpretations of Marie Antoinette, I think evil should be an exaggerated characterization. Riliane is a young person who suffers many character flaws of hubris, lack of empathy, and entitlement but when her motives are out of heartbreak and grief it becomes a little more empathetic for the fact the character who shouldn’t wielded a responsibility and power as great as she does.
I think the aesthetic of properties such as Violet Evergarden and the Fire Emblem franchise showcase a European-inspired look done well in anime and that it’s an alluring concept. For some wondering if the story line is too simplistic then I don’t want to spoil this not real anime but I’d encourage you to list to “Servant of Evil” and “Regret Message” as I think they both demonstrate both how there’s some nice twists and emotionally heart-felt moments that would certainly make it an engaging affair to watch unravel and isn’t as simple as it might appear on the surface.
Consider maybe an abridged Daughter of Evil serves as the OP and you could do something like an instrumental version of Servant of Evil for the end credits. I don’t want to dismiss how truly unique and trailblazing the original songs do create this exotic storytelling experience and should be appreciated as such, however if you get the right production on this. One that wants to elaborate on the bonds between characters, extend the story through visuals and really concentrate on how to make those emotional beats hit you like a semi-truck instead of going for something dreadfully standard then you might have some magic here.
To anyone following the K at the Movies lore (why?) but cool fact this was the post that got deleted and has now been rewritten. Surprisingly enough, this is just my opinion of what I think would be some neat things if I had the power of a producer. Would you watch either of these pitched ideas? How would you go about adapting these instead? What would you make if you had the power to create a film or series? Feel free to share answers in the comments I’d love to hear people’s better ideas and then go “gosh darn why didn’t I think of that”. If you haven’t please consider helping reach my follower goal of… whatever number, you see +1 is my goal and helping with reaching it would be appreciated. Alright. Alright. Thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you at the pitch meetings?