Assassin's Creed will be the first movie released by Ubisoft Motion Pictures, based on Ubisoft's popular sci-fi/historical adventure video game series of the same name. The film, starring Michael Fassbender (X-Men: Days of Future Past) and Oscar-winner Marion Cotillard (The Dark Knight Rises), has the potential to be a game-changer for the video game movie genre in terms of both its current (lack of) critical respectability and commercial prospects alike.
Hence, Ubisoft and distributor 20th Century Fox have already begun the viral marketing campaign for Assassin's Creed, a year before the film actually opens in theaters. As a result, we now have additional casting details for the project, along with some information on when the next major wave of marketing (a teaser trailer, by the look of it) will arrive.
Fox/Ubisoft has launched an official site for Abstergo Industries, the fictional organization that (in Assassin's Creed lore) serves as a front for the Knights Templar: a group that has been battled a secret society, known as the Assassins, for centuries.
Fassbender stars in the big screen version of the Assassin's Creed gaming property as Callum Lynch, a man in the present day who - via cutting-edge technology - is able to unlock the genetic memories of his ancestor Aguilar, an Assassin in 15th century Spain, and sets out to use his new skills/knowledge to battle the Templar organization. While the Assassin's Creed movie is based on an original storyline, it will maintain continuity with the video games iteration of the franchise; and thus, the film may contain direct references to key past developments in the battle between the Knights Templar and Assassins (in addition to well-known Assassin's Creed video game characters).
Check out an image of the business card for Abstergo CEO Alan Rikkin in the film, below:
— Assassin's Creed (@AssassinsMovie) December 21, 2015
If you call either of the numbers that are listed on the above business card, you will be lead to a voicemail message from Rikkin - who, as we can now confirm, is being played by Jeremy Irons in the film. It's rumored that Irons is playing Cotillard's father in Assassin's Creed, meaning Cotillard (in turn) might well be playing the daughter of a high-ranking Templar. This also supports past speculation that the film draws inspiration from the storyline for the Assassin's Creed: Unity video game and features a forbidden romance between Fassbender and Cotillard's characters. Here is the information provided by Rikkin's voicemail message:
Hello, you’ve reached the voicemail of Alan Rikkin. I’ll be out of the office on business until March 25 with limited availability.
March 25th, 2016 could thus be when Ubisoft and 20th Century Fox are planning to release the first teaser trailer for Assassin's Creed in theaters (presumably, right after it launches online too). That's the same date that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (which, fittingly enough, also costars Irons in a key supporting role) will open in theaters, so presumably the Assassin's Creed teaser will be attached to the hotly-anticipated DC superhero tentpole when it arrives. If that's the plan then it's a smart move on Ubisoft/Fox's part.
Moving on - you can check out the newly-released Assassin's Creed banner, below:
Assassin's Creed, as mentioned before, could end up being the film that properly breaks the video game movie "curse", given the cinematic potential inherent to its mythos coupled with Ubisoft's close involvement with the development of the project. (Many fans has similar hopes for Blizzard's Warcraft movie arriving in 2016 too, based on similar reasoning.)
Furthermore, the movie boasts an impressive cast that is rounded out by such noteworthy characters actors as Brendan Gleeson (In the Heart of the Sea), along with Michael Kenneth Williams (Boardwalk Empire), as well as a talented director in Justin Kurzel. Indeed, the filmmaker's previous collaboration with Fassbender and Cotillard on Macbeth is proof enough that Assassin's Creed will be brought to life on the big screen with style and flare to spare (if nothing else).
Assassin's Creed opens in U.S. theaters on December 21st, 2016.
Source: 20th Century Fox/Ubisoft