Home » Nintendo to develop ‘Zelda’ movie in latest entertainment push

Nintendo to develop ‘Zelda’ movie in latest entertainment push

by Stewart Cole

The Nintendo logo is displayed at Nintendo Tokyo, the first official Nintendo store in Japan, at the SHIBUYA PARCO department store and shopping mall complex, during a press preview in Tokyo, Japan November 19, 2019. REUTERS/Issei Kato Acquisition of licensing rights

TOKYO, Nov 8 (Reuters) – Nintendo ( 7974.T ) said on Wednesday it will develop a live-action film of the long-running “The Legend of Zelda” franchise in the Kyoto-based company’s latest push beyond its core gaming activity.

Nintendo had a big hit with the animated movie “Super Mario Bros” this year, which highlighted the appeal of video game adaptations at the box office and helped boost demand for the old Switch console.

Shares jumped 6% a day after Nintendo reported it sold 6.84 million Switch units in the first half of the fiscal year, boosted by incremental hardware updates and titles featuring its popular roster of characters.

The “Zelda” movie will be produced by “Super Mario” creator Shigeru Miyamoto and Avi Arad, the veteran producer of films such as “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.”

The two men have been working on an adaptation of the “Zelda” franchise for years, but the film will take time, according to Nintendo’s social media posts.

The “Zelda” movie will be co-financed by Nintendo and Sony ( 6758.T ), which also has success adapting game franchises, and directed by Wes Ball, whose films include the upcoming “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes”.

Nintendo announced Tuesday that it had sold 19.5 million units of its latest “Zelda” game by the end of September, as the series continues to deliver hits nearly 40 years after its first installment.

While gaming remains Nintendo’s main profit driver, sales in its mobile and intellectual property businesses more than doubled to 55 billion yen ($365.86 million) in the first half of the current fiscal year.

The development of the “Zelda” movie comes at a time of renewed appetite for adaptations of Japanese franchises worldwide, with examples such as Netflix’s recently released adaptation of the long-running pirated manga series “One Piece.”

($1 = 150.3300 yen)

Report by Sam Nussey. Edited by Sandra Maler and Christopher Cushing

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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