Though it seems at times that Mario gets all of the attention (good and bad), he isn't the only core franchise character that Nintendo owns. The Metroid series, featuring bounty hunter Samus Aran, is another core franchise that many fans would argue hasn't gotten the respect it deserves in recent years.
Rainfall Films, the company behind the 2008 Legend of Zelda April Fool's trailer for IGN, recently released an 11-minute Metroid fan film called "Metroid: The Sky Calls." Given the positive reaction that has already forming around the film, Nintendo might want to take notice if they really are considering feature films like they suggested back in August.
"The Sky Calls" doesn't directly adapt any of the Metroid games, instead drawing on the series lore to craft an original story. The visual style is true to the games, and certain aspects of the film (such as periodic first-person views similar to those seen in the Metroid Prime games) add to the genuine feel of the movie, too. The visuals are impressive for a fan film, though this isn't surprising given that Rainfall has won several awards for its visual effects work in shorts and music videos - and, it claims a client list that includes G4 TV, Disney, and EA Games. Even the morph ball sequences come across as fairly realistic.
Obviously, this isn't Rainfall's first time tackling Nintendo IP. The fake Legend of Zelda trailer showed a familiarity with the source material, even if the visual effects weren't as sharp as they are in "The Sky Calls"; of course, it's worth remembering that the trailer was also made seven years ago. Rainfall has only gotten better in that time, and they've set the bar high for any other Metroid film projects be they official or not.
Those expecting silly, ham-fisted lines and poorly-scripted sequences will have to look elsewhere, because Rainfall gets pretty much everything right with this Metroid short. While an official Nintendo Metroid feature film would likely be more directly based on the source material, we can only hope that the director of that movie (should it ever happen) manages to capture the feel of the series as well as Rainfall has. If "The Sky Calls" has any flaws, it's that it's occasionally difficult to see some of the details, because much of the film skews a little on the dark side.
Obviously, not everyone is going to love the short. Jessica Chobot's delivery may come across as weak to some during the Metroid movie's opening sequence, and it may not contain as much action or series references as some fans would like. Of course, one must also remember that it's an unofficial fan film and Rainfall likely wanted to make sure that it didn't step on any toes at Nintendo.
We'll let you know of any news concerning an official Metroid movie when/if it comes our way.
Source: Rainfall Films