The video game company announced on Tuesday (7 November) that it was developing – alongside Sony Pictures – a live-action reimaging of one of its most successful action-adventure games.
Ball’s return to the director seat comes more than five years after his 2018 film The Maze Runner: The Death Cure. Amazingly, Ball predicted the Zelda adaptation in 2010, tweeting that he could “never even hope to have the chance to direct” such a project.
At the time, he predicted The Legend of Zelda would be “the next big mo-cap Avatar-like movie”.
Following the news, Ball reshared his 13-year-old tweet alongside a Back to the Future gif.
Currently, casting and plot details for the movie remain under wraps. The video game series, however, centres on the journey of an elf-adjacent Hylian character, Link, and the magical Princess Zelda as they fight to save their land from Ganon, an evil warlord turned demon king.
In Zelda creator Shigeru Miyamoto’s original announcement on social media, he wrote: “This is Miyamoto. I have been working on the live-action film of The Legend of Zelda for many years now with Avi Arad-san, who has produced many mega hit films.
— Joe The Marvels hype (@Joefanatic23) November 8, 2023
“I have asked Avi-san to produce this film with me, and we have now officially started the development of the film with Nintendo itself heavily involved in the production. It will take time until its completion, but I hope you look forward to seeing it.”
Zelda, the video game, was first released in 1986 – a year after the Mario franchise was introduced – solidifying Nintendo’s public popularity. Today, there have been a total of 45 Zelda games, including spin-offs and re-releases.
Yet, there have been no screen adaptations except for the one-season 1989 animated TV series, The Legend of Zelda.
Earlier this year, it was rumoured that Nintendo had scrapped a live-action Zelda TV series after plans were leaked by Netflix. In 2015, a source had reportedly described the series as “Game of Thrones for a family” to The Wall Street Journal.