‘Magic: The Gathering’ Movie in Development

Published 7 months ago by , Updated January 14th, 2014 at 7:18 pm,

magic the gathering movie Magic: The Gathering Movie in Development

Magic: The Gathering is the latest niche fantasy game (and Hasbro property) to begin the climb to the big screen, after Universal started pressing ahead with a Warcraft movie – with Duncan Jones (Source Code) calling the shots – and WB attempting to work out the legal complications that are holding up a Dungeons & Dragons movie reboot.

For those unfamiliar, Magic: The Gathering is a printed card game that was created by Richard Garfield in 1993 and represents ongoing fights between wizards (a.k.a. “planeswalkers”) who battle their opponents by use of various spells, enchanted artifacts and creature summonings.

According to THR, Fox has set writer/producer Simon Kinberg to produce the film adaptation, with the intention of putting together the first chapter in a new big-budget franchise “on the scale of Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings.”

Kinberg has his finger in several pies right now, including his role as the chief architect for 20th Century Fox’s budding shared Marvel universe – he wrote/produced this year’s X-Men: Days of Future Past, is working on the followup X-Men: Apocalypse and he revised the Fantastic Four reboot script – and Lucasfilm/Disney’s forming Star Wars universe, where Kinberg is producing the animated series Star Wars Rebels for Disney XD and writing a spinoff film (one that might be a Han Solo origin story/spinoff).

Which is to say, for the foreseeable future Kinberg probably won’t much in the way of free time to devote his creative energy to getting the Magic: The Gathering franchise off the ground.

world warcraft movie start date Magic: The Gathering Movie in Development

Warcraft and Magic: The Gathering face something of an uphill challenge, considering that full-blooded fantasy movies not set in either Middle-earth, the Wizarding World or Narnia have traditionally yielded mixed results, when compared to the box office heights reached by trilogies like The Hobbit or the Harry Potter films. Some have gone on to become cult successes on the home video market, but even in the age of the geek, niche fantasy movies aren’t surefire bets (see: the swords & sorcery/reboot Conan the Barbarian‘s box office under-performance).

Of course, with people like Jones striving to bring more respectability to movies that are about wizards not named Gandalf or Dumbledore – while Marvel Studios plans to introduce a truly mystical superhero with Doctor Strange in the next few years – it’s as good a time as any for Magic: The Gathering to make the transition to the film medium.

Now Fox just needs to cast a wizard as intimidating as Jeremy Irons, and Magic: The Gathering will be ready to go.

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Screen Rant will keep you posted on development for Magic: The Gathering as more information is made available.

Source: THR

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TAGS: magic: the gathering

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  1. I know next to nothing of World of Warcraft or Magic the Gathering, but the more epic fantasy movies the better.

  2. I can see Warcraft working.

    MtG? hmmm Ive played it, enjoyed it, just dont see the story with it. All I can compare it to is the Yugio (sp?) cartoons my son use to watch.

    • You should read the free comic books online. I think that MTG still has them on their site.

    • Uuuh MTG actually has TONS of story. Each set has an accompanying novel (or they used to anyway). Not to mention how fantastic some of the artwork and design is, it could blow people away if translated accurately. It’s better than most fantasy actually imo, save for the lonely top that is Tolkien’s work.

      I can see this being awesome, were it not they probably will go with recent stories, I’ve quit playing since 2009 so don’t kbow how they are.

  3. There is so much potential in the magic universe. So many different characters to follow and pick from

  4. I am pretty irritated by the start of this piece. Magic is not niche and has 12 million active players in 75 countries. It is a worldwide game and the biggest collectible card game. It shares a ton with dungeons and dragons mainly because hasbro owns both. It is a great game i have played for 20 years dare you to say that about 95% of games. I actually think if magic had a successfull movie we might see a explosion of players which i welcome.

    • Apologies for the confusion, I wasn’t trying to belittle MTG by calling it “niche” – just meant that it’s part of a culture that’s relatively limited in the size of its following, as opposed to being mainstream.

      • It is niche. Plain and simple. Yea i played it when i was in my teens and even a few times in my twenties, but its VERY rare to find people who know about it. World of Warcraft and League of Legends are the #1 and #2 games played in the world yet i dont know a TON of people irl that even know about those games unless they know about WoW from the south park episode years back. Calling it niche is not an insult at all.

        MTG is also a video game, and 12 million worldwide is not that many people. WoW at its height had 19+ million players and LoL currently has ~30 million active monthly users – they are still both niche. There are 7 billion people in the world and when not even close to 10% play the most played game on earth. 700 million is 10% for the people who care.

        Anyway – a small % know about something, a smaller % play it, dont act like its a worldwide phenomenon when its surely isnt. Its niche.

  5. I need to see Mirrodin realized on the big screen.

  6. I always thought MTG looked cool when I was a kid I just had absolutely no idea how to play it. Seems like its got film potential though! (not that I’d really know…)

  7. OH YES! This is too good to be true! An MG movie?

    I can so see this going for years and years. There is so much material to draw from!

    BTW if Cristopher Lee is cast as the voice of Nicol Bolas then I will simply die from a serious nerdgasm.

    They just have to do this right. Thankfully the movie producers and writers will have on their side the creators of the game and we are talking about the same people who created Dungeons and Dragons…

    Yep, looking forward to this!

  8. I wouldn’t put movies like Conan in the same vein as warcraft, lotr, harry potter or magic: the gathering…
    and thus would not judge the potential success of these new films through them.
    The reason fantasy movies not set in middle earth, hogwarts and narnia don’t do well is because there ARE NONE.

    There are barely any other films about wizards and elves (hellboy II: golden army, being the only one which comes to mind)
    which is the kind of fantasy which does well now (pagan-ish kind of stuff) and the reason s***** greek mythology movies
    and hack/slash man-centric action movies like Conan don’t do well. People want fantasy first, characters second, action last
    in their fantasy movies now. There is, in fact, a massive demand for these kinds of movies, one which, if the quality is high, these
    films will fill and benefit greatly from.

  9. Loved M:TG and still have a few sets and rare cards safely tucked away (beta Black Lotus :D ) but am unsure how they are going to turn it into a movie w/o the cards or game premise.

    I admit to never having read the books so can only surmise at its base there is an alignment thing with each of the 5 colors…let the battles begin!

  10. Fox also gave us dragon ball evolution so they will most likely screw this up too.

    • Oh boy, they kamehameha’d the heck outta that show, just awful…*summons the DBZ dragon* “oh great dragon make a good DBZ movie for the sake of the world”

      • of ALL the things to wish for….you might as well have asked for a ham and cheese sandwich. What a waste of a wish!

  11. Simon Kinberg? It should be Joss Whedon IMO

  12. The success or failure of a MTG movie will depend entirely on whether they are faithful to the source material.

    Consider the truly awful “Eragon” movie, where Hollywood took a decent first timer’s hit novel, cookie-cuttered a bunch of fantasy cliche’s into it, then dipped it in dingo poop.

    If they can keep the studio bureaucrats out of the plot and stick to the source material (Say, something set during the Urza/Mishra era) then it could do well…if they revamp The Hobbit with MTG creatures and spells, it will stink.

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