There's also news in the world of upcoming video game movies, as new casting announcements, directors, and release date reveals seemingly happening every week. Luckily you're in the right place to find out just what's happening with all the upcoming video game movies that are in production, and which ones have slipped into limbo.
Video game movies are big business for Hollywood these days, and the dark times of cheap spin-offs and disappointing adaptations seem to be behind us for now. Whatever your gaming interests, or if you prefer to watch rather than play, there's something that will interest you on this list. Spider-Man's Tom Holland will play Nathan Drake in the Uncharted movie, we're getting a Sonic the Hedgehog sequel, and production on the Metal Gear Solid movie is well underway.
Find out more about all those movies and more with our regularly updated upcoming video game movies list, and then check out our list of the best video game movies that you can watch right now.
Upcoming video game movies for 2021
Resident Evil: Welcome To Raccoon City
Release date: November 24, 2021
The Resident Evil movies were due a reboot, and Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City sure looks like one. Based on the first and second games in the series, it follows a group of survivors as they battle the zombies in 1998's Raccoon City. Kaya Scodelario stars as Claire Redfield, Robbie Amell as Chris Redfield, Hannah John-Kamen as Jill Valentine, and Avan Jogia as Leon S. Kennedy.
Johannes Roberts, who made The Strangers: Prey at Night and 47 Meters Down, is directing and writing.
"With this movie, I really wanted to go back to the original first two games and re-create the terrifying visceral experience I had when I first played them," he told Deadline. "Whilst at the same time telling a grounded human story about a small dying American town that feels both relatable and relevant to today’s audience."
Upcoming video game movies for 2022
Release date: February 18, 2022
Tom Holland will play a young Nathan Drake, and the latest candidate for the cursed director's chair is Venom and Zombieland director, Ruben Fleischer. According to Holland, Wahlberg is back in the cast, but as Sully instead of Nate Drake as he was previously cast. The word before the pandemic was that filming was set to begin shortly, but production was put on hold in March. Since then we've had the first picture of Holland as a young Drake, and Wahlberg with an impressive mustache.
The movie will be on Netflix, too. Thanks to a new deal, Netflix has exclusive rights to stream Sony's theatrical releases.
Rumors and drama have surrounded the Uncharted movie since around 2010, when Mark Wahlberg confirmed he was playing Nathan Drake and that Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci would be his co-stars. Directed by American Hustle's David O Russell, fans we're confused about the rumored plot lines, and things soon fell quiet. Fans hope's soared when Dan Trachtenberg was announced as the new director, but he left a few months later.
Bumblebee director Travis Knight took his place, but only for a couple of months, leaving the director's chair empty for now. Perhaps because of this, Sony Pictures has confirmed it's once again delaying the release of the live-action Uncharted film. This time the release has slipped to March 5, 2021, a further three-month delay for a movie that's been in development, off and on, since 2008. Naturally, the coronavirus pandemic would eventually impose its effects on the Uncharted movie and delayed its release to February 18, 2022.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2
Release date: April 8, 2022
You read right: 2020's live-action film adaptation of Sonic the Hedgehog is getting a sequel. It will be with us next year, and is bringing quite the new casting announcement with it. The Suicide Squad star Idris Elba has confirmed he'll play Knuckles the Echidna, and the main cast from the original, Ben Schwartz, Jim Carrey, and James Marsden will all return. Jeff Fowler also returns as director.
This time around Sonic joins forces with Tails - whose casting is yet to be revealed - to stop Dr. Robotnik/Eggman and Knuckles from getting their hands on a powerful emerald.
Super Mario Bros.
Release date: December 21, 2022
No, not a remake of the infamous 1993 live-action adaptation starring Bob Hoskins as Mario and John Leguizamo as Luigi, but a new animated movie. The project is a collaboration between Minions studio Illumination and Nintendo, and has an impressive cast list. Guardians of the Galaxy star Chris Pratt will voice Mario - to mixed reactions from the internet - Anya Taylor-Joy will play Peach, Charlie Day is Luigi, and Jack Black is Bowser. Keegan-Michael Key will play the vocal part of Toad, and Seth Rogan will voice Donkey Kong. Nintendo also promised Charles Martinet (the voice of Mario in the games) in a cameo.
Release date: TBC 2022
In addition to the now-released Assassin’s Creed movie, and upcoming adaptations of Splinter Cell, Ghost Recon, Watch Dogs, and Rabbids, Ubisoft is pushing ahead with The Division. It's genuinely exciting because the post-viral, New York apocalypse film already has Jake Gyllenhaal and Jessica Chastain signed up, and I would watch happily watch Chastain grout tiles for three hours, never mind take on the end of the world.
According to an update from Ubisoft in February 2021, the movie will head straight to Netflix. We're the Millers and Skyscraper director Rawson Marshall Thurber is at the helm, with Ellen Shanman as screenwriter.
Upcoming video game movies with no release date
Minecraft: The Movie
Release date: TBA
First announced in 2019, the Minecraft movie originally had a March 4, 2022 release date, but the pandemic reshuffle of movie schedules has left the adaptation undated for now. There have been no recent updates beyond the release date cancellation, but as far as we know Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist director Peter Sollett is still in the director's chair for the project.
The original director was Shawn Levy of Night at the Museum fame, but he was replaced in 2015 by Mythic Quest's Rob McElhenney. That deal also fell apart, with McElhenney explaining that Warner Bros. bosses just didn't like his plans for the plot.
At one point in 2016 The Office's Steve Carell was in talks to star in the movie, but with all the changes since don't place any bets on seeing his name on the cast list in the future.
Metal Gear Solid
Release date: TBA
Kong: Skull Island director Jordan Vogt-Roberts is almost as passionate about games as he is about films, and fought to take on the Metal Gear movie project. Now his fans are regularly treated to shots of him hanging out with Hideo Kojima, and he's talked openly about wanting to do the story justice.
In his most recent tweets sharing concept art for the movie, Vogt-Roberts suggested the movie was still in the very early stages, referring to "if/when" the movie would get made.
DAY 4 of #METALGEAR33@Kilo_Three has this incredible ability to insert Yoji Shinkawa’s fantastical and iconic designs into our mundane reality.Something about this satellite imagery feels dangerous. It feels real. It feels like stolen intel.Metal Gear Rex for President 2020 pic.twitter.com/zMJLSkBx5SJuly 17, 2020
Jurassic World writer Derek Connolly is on board to help with the script. Oscar Isaac is rumored to be taking the role of Snake.
"I think people understand - through my relationship with Kojima and otherwise - that we're really trying to shepherd this in the most interesting ways," Vogt-Roberts told us last year.
"There's about a million steps to take and about a million things that can go wrong in the process, but I'm excited because the intent is right, the approach is right. The ethos and the producers and the executives, we all have the best interest right now in mind."
Five Nights at Freddy's
Release date: TBA
In 2018 it was announced that serious scare studio Blumhouse - home of The Purge and Insidious series - had picked up the rights to the killer animatronic bears horror story. Chris Columbus - director of Home Alone, Mrs Doubtfire, and the first two Harry Potter movies - was named as writer, director, and producer on the project.
It's been pretty quiet since then, but Scott Cawthon, creator of the Five Nights at Freddy's series, did say back in November 2020 that filming was scheduled to begin in 2021. Cawthon has since retired from game development after controversy over his donations to Donald Trump's campaign. There's has been no update on whether or not his retirement will affect the movie adaptation.
"The story is the big challenge. You know, Five Nights at Freddy’s should have been easier because there are books, there’s a lot of lore and storytelling. For a video game, I think it has more storytelling than almost any other," Blumhouse CEO Jason Blum told Inverse in November 2020.
"But still, the story goes down so many rabbit holes. It goes down so many different directions. It’s big. Choosing which part to tell the first time out of the gate — and how to tell it — has been tricky."
Release date: TBA
Optioned way back in 2004, The Splinter Cell movie has changed its creative team a few times now, but one constant has remained: Tom Hardy is the live-action Sam Fisher. With Hardy as its star the adaptation feels a lot more alive than most of the movies on this list, and a 2017 interview with producer Basil Iwanyk suggested things were moving forward.
"We’ve got a script. It’s a little long, but it’s the best script we’ve had," he said. "We’re going in there to figure out how to cut some pages and give it to [Tom] Hardy. This draft kind of addressed Tom’s notes. We’re going to give it to Hardy in the next couple of weeks and hopefully try to get it done this year."
Tomb Raider 2
Release date: TBA
Tomb Raider 2 has had a tumultuous time making it to big screens. The latest update is that Lovecraft Country creator Misha Green is set to helm and write Tomb Raider 2. On Twitter, she said her pick from the "classic" era of Tomb Raider games is 2006 title Tomb Raider: Legend, which is the one where Lara is on the hunt for the legendary sword Excalibur.
My fav from classic era is Legend & from survival era it’s a tie between Rise & Shadow. So I’m thinking something like:🔦⛏🗻🗿🧟♂️👊🏻🏺 🦖🔫🔫🏃🏻♀️*whispers* Who’s as excited as I am for a @TombRaiderMovie!?!? 🤑💃🏾🤩 #TombRaiderJanuary 25, 2021
While the addition of Green is good news, the movie is still without a release date. Originally set for March 19 2021, it currently lurks in limbo waiting for a new slot on the MGM schedule.
Originally Free Fire and Rebecca director Ben Wheatley was set to direct the sequel, but parted ways with the movie earlier this year. "I had quite a few projects, and they all just gutted out," he told The Hollywood Reporter. "We were doing a bit of Tomb Raider but that looked like it was going right into the long grass and wasn’t going to happen."
Call of Duty
Release date: TBA
Things aren't looking bright for the Call of Duty movie. Back in February 2020, the movie's director announced that it would be delayed indefinitely. It pains me to remind you that mid-February was just before everyone started delaying productions, so it's almost a certainty that nothing's changed since then.
Before things took a sharp downturn, things were looking good for the Call of Duty movie. Stefano Sollima was signed on as director, and if that name is familiar it's because made Sicario: Day of the Soldado. Kieran Fitzgerald was on board as the writer - he's also currently at work on Sherlock Holmes 3 - and in the past has penned Oliver Stone's Snowden and a few episodes of gripping Netflix documentary series Wormwood.
"Not a war movie, but a soldier movie," Solima said of the project in an interview with Polygon. "I think that this is what I will do. I think it’s a missing part. [There have recently been] some movies [about] soldiers, but only some of them are masterpieces. I think I miss modern [soldier movies]. As an audience.”
Release date: TBA
We tried to pin down the current state of the Mass Effect movie in 2017, but honestly it's just a series of the rights being handed around the industry like a game of hot potato.
Optioned in July 2009, with Blackhat writer Morgan Davis Foehl signed up for author duties in 2012, the movie now seems stuck in development hell. Ghost in the Shell and Inception producers are still listed as on board, but we can't help feeling that the ugliness around Mass Effect: Andromeda's launch probably killed this deal. Perhaps the release of Mass Effect 5 could resurrect it?
Release date: TBA
It turned out that the original deal with production company Good Universe had fallen through when it was acquired by Lionsgate, and the rights returned to the game's developers Campo Santo.
“Jess and Keith are hard-working and visionary film producers with impeccable taste in video games," said Campo Santo's Sean Vanaman at the time. "Not unlike when we met Joe Drake and the team at Good Universe in 2016, we knew in our first conversation with Jess and Keith that they’d make great partners. We have no doubt in their expertise, their taste and their passion and assume that our experience as so-so game developers will make us first-rate producing partners."
Gears of War
Release date: TBA
Big aliens, big men, a bunch of fans already primed to see more of both - a Gears of War movie seems like a sure bet, which is probably why it's been in the works in one way or another since 2007.
Since then rumors have swirled around, including that Netflix wanted to buy the rights to the story for a movie or TV show with Dave Bautista, but the latest official update came from The Coalition’s Rod Fergusson in 2019.
"In order for the movie to be successful, it has to be a great movie first and a Gears movie second," he said. "Basically, the way that we sort of reconciled that was, we said, ‘oh the movie should be an alternate reality’.”
Ghost of Tsushima
Release date: TBA
Get ready for a kickass Ghost of Tsushima movie, because Sony Pictures and PlayStation Productions have called on John Wick director Chad Stahelski to adapt the atmospheric adventure game.
"We’re excited to be partnering with Chad and 87Eleven Entertainment, to bring their vision of Jin’s story to the big screen," said Asad Qizilbash, Head of PlayStation Productions. "We love working with creative partners like Chad, who have a passion for our games, ensuring we can create rich adaptations that will excite our fans and new audiences."
Release date: TBA
Well knock me down with a feather, the Portal movie is still alive. As recently as May 2021, JJ Abrams confirmed it was in active development at Warner Bros.
"We actually do have a script that’s being written for the Portal movie now at [Warner Bros.]." Abrams, who is the producer of the film confirmed. "We’re really excited about the take and the pitch, so it feels like that thing’s finally on the rails.”
It's been eight years since the movie was initially revealed, so it just goes to show you should never give up on dreams.
Release date: TBA
In 2017 it was announced that we were getting an adaptation of Sleeping Dogs, with Star Wars: Rogue One actor Donnie Yen in the lead role. More recently, in an interview with Collider in August, Yen gave fans some hope after the long silence.
"I'm still hopeful. I mean, every day they tell me it's going to happen. I'm co-producing and collaborating with [producers] Neil Moritz and Toby [Ascher], with their company, and currently talking with a couple of big platforms. And they tell me every single day it's going to happen, so we'll see. Like I said, I believe in destiny. So, if it's going to happen, hopefully, it will happen the first half of next year."
Upcoming video game movies limbo
There are a bunch of upcoming video game movies that haven't been officially canceled, but at this point, it's safe to assume that you don't need to be saving space in your diary for either. Here are all those unfortunate movies, and the last we heard on them.
- Asteroids - Universal Pictures picked up the rights to a movie based on the classic black-and-white space shooter way back in July 2009. Director Roland Emmerich left the project in 2015, and it doesn't appear anyone else has picked it up.
- Dante's Inferno - Back in 2010 publisher EA promised us a movie and in 2013, Fede Alvarez - the guy who directed the Evil Dead remake - was announced as leading the project. At least 2010 did give us Dante's Inferno: An Animated Epic, starring Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill.
- Deus Ex: Human Revolution - Dead silence since its 2013 announcement, changing writers, directors, and even production companies since then. At last word Dr. Strange writers C. Robert Cargill and Scott Derrickson had signed up, and It and The Lego Movie producer Roy Lee was backing it.
- Devil May Cry - Capcom announced the movie was being made at E3 2011, and we haven't heard a thing since.
- Far Cry - Industry sites say it was last optioned in 2016 and will follow a former Special Forces operative tracking down a missing journalist. Could they track down a missing update on this movie first?
- Fruit Ninja - Yes, that Fruit Ninja. New Line picked up the project in 2016 to make a live-action comedy, but we haven't heard anything since. Which is probably for the best.
- God of War - More a thing of rumor than a real project, but Cory Barlog, creative director at SIE Santa Monica Studio has tweeted positively about the idea.
- Ghost Recon - Around 2013 this project had Michael Bay attached, but there have been no recent updates on the project. Live-action short Ghost Recon Alpha, produced by Ridley Scott, was released in 2012.
- Gran Turismo - Optioned in 2015, the last update was in 2017 and was that the script was being worked on. If it is coming out still, it's driving towards Hollywood very very slowly.
- Heavy Rain - The rights were snapped up in 2006 before the game was released, but it's been *checks watch* 15 years since then.
- Kane and Lynch - Revealed in 2007, in 2013 there was news that Gerard Butler and Vin Diesel were on board with director F. Gary Gray. It's been all quiet since then.
- The Last of Us - With news of the Last of Us TV show series in the works at HBO - starring Pedro Pascal and Lady Mormont herself, Bella Ramsey - it's a safe bet that we won't be getting the once discussed movie adaptation of the PlayStation series.
- Rabbids - The most recent update from 2019 is that Lionsgate snapped up the movie rights, and plans to make a hybrid live-action movie. The Final Girls director Todd Strauss-Schulson was in talks to direct at that point, but here in 2021, it seems all quiet on that deal front.
- Temple Run - Announced in 2013, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them producer David Heyman was apparently in talks with Warner. Bros about the project. Nothing has been heard since then.
- Watch Dogs - Announced in 2013, the last we heard about the hacker movie adaptation was in 2016, when Ubisoft said it was working with Sony to make it happen On IMDb it was listed as the "Untitled Mark Wahlberg/Hacker Project" so let your mind run wild with that for a while.