Warcraft movie not just for fans of the game, will have “big, universal themes”

The upcoming Warcraft movie, scheduled to hit theaters in March 2016, is not only for fans of the game, according to Legendary Pictures producer Thomas Tull. He told I Am Rogue in a new interview that the movie will have "big, universal themes" that will appeal to an audience far wider than those who have played the game. This was all made possible by director Duncan Jones (Moon, Source Code), a man Tull said is "so talented."

"I think people might initially say, 'It's a video game movie, or it's sort of fantasy whatever.' But just wait. That's the whole point of having a Duncan Jones direct the movie versus maybe some other version. That's really as fans what we want to see, which is stuff that's commercial, but elevated that takes these amazing stories as jumping off points and then puts these directors on them that will tweak it slightly and look at it through a different lens," Tull said.

"I think the mistake sometimes that gets made is you might say, 'how many people played the video game? Well that's big, so lets make that,'" -- Tull

Part of the reason why Warcraft, which finishes shooting soon but still needs many months to finish post-production, took so long to make was because Legendary and Blizzard were not willing to greenlight a version that wasn't up to their standards, Tull said.

"I think the mistake sometimes that gets made is you might say, 'How many people played the video game? Well that's big, so lets make that.' If everybody who's ever played the game went to see it, it's still not enough," he said. "On top of that making a video game movie is a different medium, it's very difficult."

It's tough to know how many people have played Warcraft games throughout the years, but Blizzard claims that over 100 million people have played World of Warcraft alone since it first hit the market a decade ago in 2004. One thing is for sure, though, Legendary Pictures was not interested in simply trying to replicate the game experience for the big screen. That just wouldn't work, Tull said.

"We have come up with a mythology and a lore that's so deep that it got us excited. Because just saying we're going to make what the game you play into a movie, I'm not interested in that at all," Tull said. "We finally got to a story that felt like it had big, universal themes that people will be able to get their heads around. But I also think jabbing your finger into a fence and saying, everything you loved about the game is gone, well I don't get that either. What you do want to do is say, here's something that you really love and here's that version of it. So that's what we tried to do."

Legendary and Blizzard are keeping details about the Warcraft movie largely under wraps. No trailers for the movie have been released, and all we've seen so far is one image from the set. The story focuses on the origins of the battle between Orcs and Humans, and the movie's digital scenes are being handled by acclaimed Star Wars effects studio Industrial Light & Magic. We might get to finally see the movie in action at Comic-Con in July.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
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