Do you like Minecraft, but find it is just too interactive? Too vast to get a hold on? And what’s with all these confusing “buttons”? Maybe a movie is more your speed, and Mojang has got just the thing in the works to keep you happy. Yes, a film based on the world-famous sandbox game Minecraft is in the works, yet will presumably offer theatergoers relatively few choices for their decor. Long speculated on after mischievous creator Notch leaked its existence back in 2014, new information has now come out about the project.
Minecraft: The Movie is slated for May 24th of 2019, and is set to be directed by Rob McElhenney of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia in association with Warner Brothers Studios. Vu Bui, COO of Mojang, has stated that it will be a large budget production that will be available in both IMAX and 3D.
Why anyone decided that a property known primarily for its lack of limitations should be adapted into a linear narrative is beyond me, but it can’t be argued that the massive stacks of money flowing from anything with six sides and a pixellated texture probably has something to do with it. Nor is it the first time that someone has attempted to staple a narrative onto Minecraft, with Telltale’s Minecraft: Story Mode trying that trick in narratively driven video games. Minecraft remains the most successful gaming product of all time*, and has basically defined what a ‘video game’ is for a whole new generation of gamers.
License holder Microsoft may well have a long line of cubic cash-ins planned to keep the brand going for a long time, and as long as mod support holds out the game will maintain a vibrant following. Given that, at E3 they discussed add-ons taking the idea of mods to mobile, windows 10, and console versions of the game, it appears Minecraft will be with us for quite a while with further expanding horizons with both official and unofficial content.
While there’s no problem with a good game having staying power, I hope things don’t reach the level they did with sponsorships in the 90’s. As long as there’s no breakfast cereal I think we’re safe, but keep an eye out for the inevitable cartoon, playing now in someone’s feverish, cash-fueled dreams.
*Except Tetris, but come on, that’s like water beating out Coke for most popular beverage.