Paul W.S. Anderson’s Resident Evil: The Final Chapter is scheduled to hit theaters in early 2017, but the writer-director is already prepping his next video game adaptation. According to reports, Anderson and his producing partner, Jeremy Bolt, plan to move on to the movie version of Monster Hunter.
Since the first game in the series released in 2004, Monster Hunter has become one of the biggest franchises in all of gaming, particularly among Japanese audiences. The next installment, Monster Hunter XX, is expected to make its Japanese debut next March.
“What I love about Monster Hunter is the incredibly beautiful, immersive world they’ve created,” said Anderson in an interview with Deadline. “It’s on the level of like a Star Wars movie, in terms of world creation. There are no real central characters so it’s a bit like when we first approached Resident Evil and imposed our own characters and story on that world. I think this is a perfect IP for us to do exactly that same thing again.”
Anderson and Bolt have apparently already secured the rights to Monster Hunter from Capcom. The studio was more than willing to support the film’s development, given that the Resident Evil movies have been such an enormous success — the franchise is expected to exceed $1 billion in ticket sales with the release of The Final Chapter.
However, there’s another advantage to putting Anderson at the helm of the budding franchise:an existing relationship with visual effects studio Mr. X. The Canadian outfit’s work helped keep costs down on the Resident Evil franchise, so there are hopes that Mr. X can do the same for the spectacular visuals necessary to bring Monster Hunter to the big screen.
Anderson’s lofty aspirations for the first movie center around an everyman American who’s forced into action when mysterious creatures start to invade the real world, culminating with a larger-than-life showdown at the Los Angeles International Airport. The film is being developed with the intention of starting an ongoing franchise.