- Call of Duty combat games are on tap for big-screen treatment
- `Warcraft' movie is scheduled for theaters in June 2016
Activision Blizzard Inc. is creating a film and TV studio that will tap its trove of video-game titles such as Skylanders and Call of Duty.
The first effort will be an animated TV series based on the Skylanders game and toys, Santa Monica, California-based Activision said Friday in a statement.
The Skylanders brand, which combines video games with collectible action figures, has generated sales of more than $3 billion since its introduction in 2011. The video-game publisher, which agreed this week to buy Candy Crush maker King Digital Entertainment Plc for $5.9 billion, is also working on films tied to its Call of Duty combat games.
“Activision Blizzard is home to some of the most successful entertainment franchises in history, across any medium,” Chief Executive Officer Bobby Kotick said in the statement. “With the launch of Activision Blizzard Studios, our engaged fans can now watch the games they love come to life across film and television.”
Nick van Dyk, who joined the company last year from the Walt Disney Co., will co-lead the studio.
Video games as a genre haven’t been a huge hit for Hollywood, even if they’ve generated millions in royalties for the owners.
The most successful was “Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time,” which was released by Disney and produced $336 million in worldwide ticket sales in 2010, according to Box Office Mojo. The researcher lists 36 titles that brought in $1.17 billion in domestic revenue.
“Warcraft,” a film based on Activision’s series of online strategy games, is scheduled for release in June 2016 from Legendary Pictures and Comcast Corp.’s Universal Pictures, according to Imdb.com.