I've got good news and I've got bad news depending on your point view. It looks like #MortalKombat may be returning to movie theaters. It might not be long before we can see a good Mortal Kombat movie in all its ultra-violent, bone-crunching glory. And it's all thanks to director Simon McQuoid, who's in the running to take the helm of the latest cinematic reboot, according to a report from Variety that was confirmed by Mortal Kombat creator Ed Boon.
McQuoid is an Australian director mainly known for commercials. His clients have included Duracell, Logitech, Samsung and Netflix, but gamers might know him for his live-action work for #PlayStation and #Xbox. McQuoid directed the 'Michael' ad for Sony's #PlayStation 3, in which the eponymous player is cheered by famous video game characters like Nathan Drake, Kratos and Solid Snake, as well as Halo 3 'Enemy Weapon' spot, in which two retired old-timer UNSC veterans reminisce about the franchise's weapons.
Mortal Kombat Movie Legacy
Mortal Kombat has a spotty record when it comes to live action adaptations. In the '90s New Line Cinema (a division of Warner Bros) produced two Mortal Kombat movies: Mortal Kombat and Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. While the former just about stands up as one of the better video game action movie adaptations, the latter is pretty laughable. The live action TV series Mortal Kombat: Conquest (seriously, shouldn't it be Konquest?) didn't exactly wow critics or viewers, either.
Fresh hope for a good, gritty live-action Mortal Kombat adaptation came when fan and director Kevin Tancharoen released an unauthorized short film, Mortal Kombat: Rebirth. The warm fan reaction to this teaser led Warner Bros to release a two season web series called Mortal Kombat: Legacy (with Tancharoen as director) in 2011 and 2013.
Choose Your Director
New Line has actually been looking to make a reboot of the Mortal Kombat movie franchise for some time now, and at one point it looked like Kevin Tancharoen was going to be involved, but he dropped out in 2013.
2015 saw New Line bring in director James Wan (Saw, Insidious) as an executive producer on the reboot. Writers associated with project include Dave Callaham (Doom, The Expendables) and Oren Uziel (Mortal Kombat: Legacy, 22 Jump Street). According to Variety, writer Greg Russo has taken the latest pass at revising the Mortal Kombat movie script.
You're Still Trying To Win
The 1995 Mortal Kombat movie remains the best and most straightforward live-action adaptation of the games so far, in this author's most humble opinion. Even the games themselves tread a fine line between gripping and gritty on one hand, and cringe-worthy tastelessness on the other. There seems to be some serious talent tapped for the upcoming 2017 reboot, and if it will stick to the original MK1 simple storyline and go from there, we could see a Mortal Kombat cinematic universe worthy of the legendary video game.