And it is that, for Meledandri, the barrier between both worlds is on the verge of extinction.
“I think the natural evolution is for these lines to disappear,” the producer told AFP.
“We’re starting to see that video games played in real time have a lot of power, we see a level of visuals in video games that is just amazing,” he explained.
Meledandri also noted that there are “video games that integrate narrative in a number of effective ways, and a mix of artists working in both areas.”
The Illumination studio, which he directs, is the latest to try to close this gap with the release this week of the highly anticipated film of Super Mario Bros. in American theaters.
With a history of having raised a box office of 4 thousand 400 million dollars with the franchise of My favorite villainthe Paris-based studio managed to convince stars like Chris Pratt and Jack Black to add their voices to the Nintendo cast.
However, it was a long shot considering that not all video game adaptations have been successful on the big screen, as was the case with the original 1993 film from Super Mario Broswhich was a critical and commercial failure.
But Meledandri said they put this aside while planning their new movie. “I don’t remember any conversation about the 1993 movie. It came up maybe three times,” she said.
Since then, a small but growing number of productions that merge both worlds have conquered the audience, among them Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and warcraftplus the Emmy-winning Netflix series Arcane and the recent launch of HBO The Last Of Us.
“We are quick to talk about trends. But trends are just a collection of individual experiences,” the producer opined.
Although in several unsuccessful attempts to adapt video games to the cinema, Hollywood wrested creative control from the authors of the original franchises, Meledandri believes that basing films on video games is “perfectly viable” if a collaborative process is established.
“If we continue to work like before, I think it’s going to be more difficult to make solid movies,” he added.
Despite the fact that cinematic elements are becoming more common in video games, there is little evidence that the interactive component can be successfully translated to film or television.
“Very talented people,” like Charlie Brooker, have dabbled in interactivity on shows like Black Mirrorwhich had an episode titled “Bandersnatch” that allowed viewers to make choices that influenced the plot, Meledandri noted.
“It’s one of those notions that has captivated people for many years, but I think it’s much harder to achieve,” Meledandri said. “I don’t know anyone who masters this.”