The former CEO of Ubisoft Motion Pictures and producer of the recent Assassin’s Creed flick, Jean-Julien Baronnet, has founded a new film studio which will focus solely on adapting video game titles into feature films, reports Variety.
Baronnet told Variety that his impetus for starting Marla Studios hinged on the fact that adaptating the source material in games takes more than just competency in making films. Baronnet states that it also takes a director who has a deep understanding of video games and knows what the intended audience want to see in a filmic adaptation.
“Producing a video game adaptation is a special process that not only requires movie production know-how, but also a deep understanding of gamer values and the video game creative process,” Baronnet said. “Most of the time they try to copy the video game’s story and/or characters which is exactly what should not be done.”
Having experience in the field, having worked on the upcoming Tom Hardy Splinter Cell adaptation and the aforementioned Assassin’s Creed film, Baronnet stated he wants to elevate what a video game film can be, to be viewed on equal footing with any other film and not just a marketing tie in.
“The key is to have a close relationship with the game designers and to work with them on the key creative angles that will best cope with the game’s DNA,” Baronnet told Variety. “The key is to recognize the passion of gamers, given they spend hundreds of hours in that world. That makes it essential for the ‘universe’ of the game to be as accurate as possible.”
Baronnet said he plans to hire gaming industry veterans to aid in adaption and production of the films, but currently no concrete names have been attached to the new studio. Baronnet also stated that he is currently in talks with multiple studios about adapting their franchises and titles. He, however, didn’t clarify which specific studios or titles. More information is expected to be revealed soon.