This week “Detective Pikachu” surpassed Duncan Jones’ “Warcraft” film to become the highest-grossing film adaptation of a video game to date. “Warcraft” famously opened in 2016 to poor reviews and outright terrible domestic box-office with $47 million.
However overseas, especially in Asian markets, it did very well – pulling in a further $386 million. Unfortunately, due to its high $160 million price tag, it simply didn’t do enough to justify a follow-up.
Jones had a major story arc planned for the franchise had it continued on and recently he sat down with Collider to talk about the 4K Ultra HD release of his earlier work “Moon”. During that interview, talked turned towards where “Warcraft” could have gone, and Jones spoke about what it was like to do a film of that size:
“I had just spent three and a half years working on not just one studio film but a film which went through multiple studios. So it was an absolute… The essence of studio filmmaking. I got a chance to experience multiple studios’ takes on what a film of this size should be on one movie because…originally, we were Warner Bros. I was working with Atlas. I was working with Universal. I was working with Legendary. I was working with Blizzard.
Obviously Blizzard were very passionate about what film should be because they are who had been with the game for so long and they didn’t want to detract from that. So there were more points as to what the film needed to be. And then Legendary was bought by Wanda while we were making the movie. So it was a unique moment in time for experiencing what kind of craziness studio filmmaking could be.”
Jones says a big challenge was to merge the high fantasy setting of the video game franchise with a more grounded believability for general audiences. He also spoke about how the story would’ve played out had it continued:
“For me the story was about Gul’dan and taking the false walls, the symbol or the tribe that he was the chief of, taking them away from the world that was dying, on setting them up with a new home on this planet of Azeroth. And, really that was going to happen through his baby son who’s, for those who are lore junkies, was going to grow up to be this character called Thrall.
So really it was about, that story and everything else was how the orcs left their home world and clear that new home for themselves in Azeroth that was the three film arc I would’ve wanted to follow up… I genuinely think that in retrospect and as time has moved on, people are starting to appreciate the film more than maybe the critics did when it first came out but unfortunately I don’t think we’re going to get to make anymore.”
Jones went on to helm “Mute” for Netflix and is currently in pre-production of the “Rogue Trooper ” film.