Today, we will discuss the making of board games into movies. That’s right, there is a trend going on with making toy franchises, especially by Hasbro (Transformers, Battleship), into movies. Now we all know Battleship stunk bad, but the fact is that it made about $100 million in profit, which means it is likely there will be a terrible sequel and other movies to follow in its path.
We have a guest lister today as well. Sam Mark breaks down his top 5 first. Check out Sam’s blog where he writes comics and his father illustrates them. You can find the blog here! Here is what Sam has to say and his list to follow:
I’m a huge board game nerd. I recently went to Strategicon, a board game convention which was down near the airport. I literally spent money to go play new and upcoming board games. What’s been most fascinating for me, is the recent spike in movie deals based on board games. Most notably, Battleship, which hit theaters this past summer. The movie cost $209 million to make, but domestically, only brought in $65 million. Thankfully, outside of America has a terrible taste in movies, where internationally, Battleship made $237 million. Which is why, I believe, the following movies could be made and be financial successes.
5. (Blank) With Friends
First off the bat, I know I’m cheating a little bit. There’s a lot of types of “games” with Friends, but I could still see the following movies made:
Hanging With Friends
A group of college students becomes friends when they find themselves thrown together for a science project. Little do they know, that their real chemistry was about to start. Starring Jonah Hill, Hayden Panettiere, Jesse Eisenberg, Michael Cera, Emma Stone, Josh Hutcherson, and Kat Dennings.
Words With Friends
A re-make of the movie “The Words” but re-shot with the cast of Friends. Even Marcel the Monkey.
Scramble With Friends
The sequel to Hanging, but the rights bought by a different studio. This time, the movie revolves around a breakfast competition in Jonah Hill’s character’s hometown. With the help of his friends, will they be able to out-scramble the rival bed and breakfast that’s threatening to bulldoze Hill’s family business? The rival owners would be played by Adam Scott and Eva Mendes, where Hill’s parents will be played by Henry Winkler and Susan Sarandon.
The combination of strategy, world domination, and luck of the die would make for a fantastic war epic. America most hold strong, as the ancient alien armies of South America, Africa, and Austrailia start to pour into North America, Europe, and Asia. These armies planted in the Earth’s crust during the “meteor” strike and doom of the dinosaurs, rise again to bring extinction to the human race. Starring Chris Evans, Gerard Butler, Ke$ha, Jesse Plemons, and Kate Upton.
3. Settlers of Catan
A fictional period piece, where the fruits of labor are in high demand. When a thief takes all of the Green Family’s resources, they must build the longest road through desert and scarcity in order to take advantage of the sheep sea port, if they are ever to survive the winter. Starring Anthony Hopkins, Kurt Russel, Sally Field, Judi Dench, Anne Hathaway, and Chris Hemsworth.
2. Candy Land
The animated tale of the kingdom of Candy Land. When King Kandy mysteriously vanishes, its up to his son and daughter to find him. From the Gum Drop Mountains to the Crooked Old Peanut Brittle House, these siblings discover a cookie-d’tat that threatens the realm. Starring the voices of Mae Whitman, Ryan Reynolds, Sean Bean, Bob Newhart, and Angela Lansbury.
Such a classic game of strategy, this black and white silent film, directed by David Lynch, pits the forces of oppression versus classicism. David Lynch plays all the characters. He also writes the movie’s theme song, Checkmate Through My Heart.
Alright Sam, awesome list. Bringing the fire! Here is mine:
5. Stratego – The board game is a simple two player game of capture the flag. You move your pieces, some more powerful than others, in order to find your opponents flag. The movie would be like that as well, but instead of a flag, the bad army (Red) would be searching for something else. Perhaps a secret mineral known as “unobtainium”? Then, the good army (blue) would be forced to fight off the red army and stave off elimination. Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana would star side by side as members of the blue army.
4. Trivial Pursuit – The Saw franchise has made a huge amount of money by putting humans in impossible situations and making them choose to live or die. The catch was that the people “playing the game” were actually not being murdered, they were killing themselves. Well, what if we combined Saw’s brutality with the drama of Slumdog Millionaire and made people play a game of life and death by answering questions? The catch is that it will be televised like the Hunger Games for all the world to see. The winner will live in a state of fame and comfort for the rest of their lives while the losers lose their lives. Too much for you? Well, then simply do not pursue trivia!
3. Magic: The Gathering – This one might be cheating a little bit because Magic is not really a board game. But it is played on a table top and some people (like a lame friend of mine in particular) play with little game mats that they roll up and bring around with them…for those reasons, we are counting Magic as a board game. Anyway, I would love to see Magic made into a movie, especially if made correctly. Most people see Magic as a total nerd thing, but what they fail to realize is that Magic is an ever evolving game full of writers who create story lines and characters that bring the game to life. It is not just a simple card game. It is a game that tells a story (multiple stories really) and those stories could be brought to life on the big screen. If I could choose one story, it would be the story of Kamahl, a troubled gladiator who turns his back on life in the arena for a life of solitude in the forest. But when the Cabal, an evil guild, plans to take over the forest, Kamahl is forced to fight back with all the might of the Krosan Forest. Gerard Butler could star as Kamahl, and the guy that plays Pyat Pree
in Game of Thrones could play the evil leader of the Cabal.
2. Small World – Small World is a game about the overcrowding of different races (like elves, goblins, orcs, dwarves, trolls, halflings, humans, ratmen, etc) on a small piece of land. The races show up and have to fight for survival until they basically over reach and are conquered by a different race and become extinct. In the movie, we could follow one race as they fight to survive against multiple others before succumbing to the inevitability of extinction. It could be a wonderful commentary on humans as a whole on this planet. Morgan Freeman would narrate.
1. Pandemic – When doctors first discover the Scalabrine Fever racing across North America, they think it is nothing but a form of the common flu. But little do they know, that the disease kills people within eight days. There is no stopping it, there is no cure. The only thing saving the human race is the fact that some people, for whatever reason, are immune to the disease. The movie would start with the disease already spreading, but the twist comes when the dead people start rising again. That’s right, Scalabrine Fever turns humans into Zombies. The survivors quickly realize that they must stick together and they frantically try to survive. They will learn it takes more than love and antibiotics to cure the world of Scalabrine Fever!
A big thank you to my friend Sam Mark on his list. What games would be on your list and why? Leave them down in the comments below!