Is this new approach in making of Mortal Kombat series an indication of a paradime change in the movie/game industry?
Mortal Kombat Is Back In a Fight for the Future by Seth Schiesel, a New York Times article.
This article describes a short, live-action video that an amateur director, and fan of the Mortal Kombat series, created based on the game. It gained immediate fame after going viral and most viewers assumed that it was created by the company that makes the game. It was actually shot in only two days on a very limited budget. Kevin Tancharoen, the director, was offered a job from Warner Brothers studios to direct a full web series based on the game, called “Mortal Kombat: Legacy.”
This demonstrates the opportunities that the internet gives amateur artists, like Tancharoen, to make their work known. At age 26 he was given the job at Warner Brothers because of the fame that his viral video produced. Web-series such as this are a good way to create hype for upcoming games, as they are much shorter and cheaper than full-length films. I came across another web-series that is in development based on the Dragon Age game series, which is described in this article: http://www.pcworld.com/article/219694/dragon_age_redemption_borrows_felicia_day_for_liveaction_series.html. It is clear that developers see the potential in these web series and are utilizing the internet to promote their products. I first wondered how the companies are making money off of them however, since they are free to watch online, but the article later answers this. They plan to eventually make the series available for sale on DVD and iTunes, and it will promote upcoming games. It seems that these web series are a good way to advertise and expand your product while profiting off of them. They will likely only be successful for IPs that already have a fan base however, as it will be difficult to make money off of them if people do not already have an interest in the series.
This is an article about a short video based upon the Mortal Kombat series of games. It was an 8-minute long game that became a hit on Youtube. It was believed that the creators of the game had created this video, but in fact it was a 26 year old director, Kevin Tancharoen, who had an interest in the game series. It was a low cost two day project. He was picked up by Warner Brother Studios shortly after the release of “Mortal Kombat: Rebirth.” He was then instructed to direct a web series based on “Mortal Kombat: Legacy.” He had been given an unexpected opportunity to kick start his career because of something he did; it happened in a different way than he had thought it would. He had planned on keeping in private to show to Warner Brothers Studios, but in fact because it did go viral and was a great success, this gave him an opportunity to do something great.
Tancharoen had taken an old classic game from his childhood and made it into something that the children of today can look forward too. Growing up we realize that the games, television shows, and movies were really good and should be brought back. This is exactly what he did. “Mortal Kombat” (1995) and “Mortal Kombat: Annihilation” (1997) were the only films based upon this game series, until Tancharoen got an opportunity. An opportunity had risen to another person because of this new Mortal Kombat popularity. Ed Boon, co-creator of the Mortal Kombat franchise, has been working on new Mortal Kombat game. This is one that would be used with current generation consoles, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.
According to Carl Lyon’s article “Jeri Ryan Talks ‘Mortal Kombat: Rebirth’,” (http://www.fearnet.com/news/b22100_jeri_ryan_talks_mortal_kombat_rebirth.html) he suspects that this web series will kick-start something that could turn into something big. Because of the success Tancharoen had with his short 8-minute Mortal Kombat video, the generation of today can start to learn to appreciate where their games and videos had come from. This is a good thing because it brings back the joys of childhood to those that played it in their youth, and is molding the current youth into more people like Tancharoen.
This article was a great read and really grabbed my interest because I have been playing Mortal Kombat ever since the original game came out. I was also a little surprised that I did not hear about this movie trailer earlier due to its popularity and also the fact that it has been on the internet for a while now.
The article focuses on a Mortal Kombat movie trailer with high quality production that appeared on the internet very unexpectedly. I was extremely impressed with the “Mortal Kombat: Rebirth” trailer and felt that this could very easily be something that is shown on the big screen. After watching it however, the first thing that came to my mind was that a big production company did not necessarily have to make this. It was very interesting to see when continuing to read the article how much confusion this video brought about. It is not surprising that many people thought the Mortal Kombat creators were affiliated in the making of the film. I was not sure either until I read more and discovered that Kevin Tancharoen, a young director in Los Angelas, was responsible for the video. This immediately made me think of the short film “Ataque de Pánico!” created by Fede Alvarez.
The video created by Fede Alvarez was a low budget film similar to that of the Mortal Kombat trailer, and it was extremely well made. “Ataque de Panico!” landed Alvarez a 30 million dollar contract for his talents. The first thing that came to mind upon reading that Warner Bros. offered Tancharoen is that must have been an absolute dream come true. For anybody that is passionate about film making, videos such as Tancharoen’s “Mortal Kombat: Rebirth” and Fede Alvarez’s “Ataque de Panico!” should be great inspiration.
My biggest thought while reading this article is how big of an impact video hosting sites can have on anybody. Prior to these sites, it had to have been extremely difficult to pitch a movie idea to a big production company, or even show them something that you had created and felt could have a lot of potential. Now, it still may be very difficult to get into direct contact with big-time production companies, however posting your videos on outlets such as Youtube will catch the eye’s of production companies if it is worthy of further development. If a video is to become viral, production companies will find out, which is exactly the case with Tancharoen. It is just amazing to see how many people get their foot in the video industry from posting videos online. For example, Jarett Cale and Geoff Lapaire created an online show called Pure Pwnage. The show became viral and eventually landed them a television show(www.purepwnage.com)
The other big part that I took from this article is that “big studios are now beginning to devote millions of dollars to original productions meant for the Web first, before potentially heading to other media.” It is an extremely interesting idea and I feel that there is no doubt that this will become the norm for big studios. The option allows for a lot more affordability and also flexibility. By putting it online, studios do not have to worry about paying for time slots to get it onto television, and they also do not have to worry about trying to get the audience to view the show at a particular time. Once it’s online, it can be viewed at any time. This will be a great indicator for production studios to see if it is worth continuing a show, or to scrap it completely. The part that I find most interesting is that this simply just could not have been done a few years ago. It really goes to show just how rapidly technology and ideas are evolving.
I had a great time reading this article for several reasons. First, it is great to see people fulfilling their dreams and landing a big time job for something that was posted on the web. Secondly, it is a great inspiration to know that that if you have a great idea or creation, it will be seen. Lastly, it is always interesting to see the new developments in technology and the rapid change that it brings about.
I found this article interesting on many levels. the first thing that grabbed my attention was the title. I Used to own the origanal Mortal Kombat game and I cant count how many hours I put into it back in the day. I thought the article was going to describe the new game that has recently been released. The other day I watched a video of the “fatality’s” and they are BRUTAL!
*do not watch if you are squeamish
But that is besides the point, the real message behind this article is that there has been a birth of a new Mortal Kombat web series called Mortal Kombat : Legacy. Its very interesting because the series was created due to a viral video. The young director Kevin Tancharoen had spent 7500 dollars making a trailer for a new Mortal Kombat movie. He filmed it in only two days yet it looks incredibly realistic. There are no flaws, in the acting, the editing and the camera work. I honestly felt like I was watching a real trailer. It was suspenseful yet there was still action. the fact that he made that video with only 7,500 dollars in two days blows my mind. And the job Mortal Kombat offered him was well deserved. So now Tancharoen has started the series Mortal Kombat Legacy and from what I saw, it was just as amazing as that pitch he had created. You have to love stories where the little man puts in the hard work and gets the big job. It just shows that anyone can make it, you just have to put in the work. I imagine that pitch mut of been hell to make, all the editing, the effects, the camera work for so little money. But he did it. And it was well worth his time and effort.
The other thing that interested me about this video is the emphasis people are putting on the web. Companies are finally beginning to see the power of the web and they are beggining to utilize it. I found it interesting that they would send their video exclusively to the web first however. I feel web should be second choice if television fails, though they did say they eventually wanted it on television. Still users everywhere have to appreciate that people are putting their videos and ideas on the web first now a days because 9/10 they are free to watch! It will be interesting to see if more companies follow suit and release primarily to the web instead of television.
Mortal Kombat is back. They have been making identical games for twenty years and it seems as though franchises such as these can never just have the grace to die young. Mr. Lesinski said, “For now it’s much easier and it makes more sense financially to work within existing brands where you know there’s a built-in audience. The next step is to start doing original intellectual properties for the Web that also includes big-name talent.” This is a problem that has plagued the film and video game industry forever. I’m sick of Call of Duty, I’m sick of Pokemon, I’m really sick of The Fast and the Furious.
Here is a link to an article that lists a few game franchises that should die: http://www.joystickdivision.com/2010/08/the_top_ten_video_game_franchi.php
It seems that no one attempts to create anything new anymore. Every movie that has come out in the last 15 years is based on a novel or another movie. It’s a joke.
I respect the quality in the production of the Mortal Kombat series, but it’s not that exciting. Perhaps it is because I don’t have the emotional attachment to the series that some people do.
In my opinion, Mortal Kombat never left. As a kid, i was fascinated with the Mortal Kombat franchise started in 1992, ironically in the same year as i was born. We’re practically brothers. This article illustrates the raw power held within the internet to be used as an instrument to convey the things that can be brought back to the forefront of lives through media. 26 year old, LA based director Kevin Tancharoen recreated a high quality classic “rebirth” of a popular game and film on an extraordinary low budget, only to blow away viewers and make an important statement. Personally, i think this is awesome. It’s a prime example of how some money, after effects, good friends and actors, and a mastermind producer behind the scheme can literally, beat out Hollywood. As for this film becoming a means for launching another installment of the series, i’m all for it. I think that Midway should strike a deal with this Tancharoen fellow, as he proves to be a valuable investment if integrated into Midway, working with Ed Boon and John Tobias. I mean, why not? However, i do believe that it is up to the official creators who hold the license of the franchise to make the decision of when, where, how, and if they want to collab or even recreate the timeless classic.
While researching the future of a MK 3 film, i came across this video game blog, which has been following the possibility of a MK 3 feature film, offering updates and hype since about 2007.
It’s funny because looking back, none of the suggested actors or release dates actually followed through, however, i’m sure these actors are still on the casting call for future production.
I’m not interested with Mortal Kombat as much as I am with the concept of a piece of cross-platform media working in this particular direction. Schiesel was very accurate when he said that “[t]he history of movies based on video games is choppy at best…” I remember the first Mortal Kombat film, and I personally thought it was horrible, just like the films for Doom, Hitman, and Max Payne. There are some very successful film and television franchises based off of video games, such as Tomb Raider, Resident Evil, and the obvious Pokemon TV series, but these seem to be marginalized when one looks at the sheer amount of film produced in this vein. Personally, I think the concept is good, but the people who worked on the games were never really involved in filming, even behind the scenes. If that could be better incorporated, as Warner Bros. seems to be doing here, then the films have a good shot at success.
I think the coolest part about this is that a little director from nowhere gets to make a shot at the big time. I have many friends who create things near the professional level and it would be incredible to see them go big. My one friend right now is shooting a show the includes 2 seasons. He already has the trailer for the show(http://vimeo.com/23362657). It looks so professionally done and exciting. He is also going to make a website for theses episodes and hot them there. This is simialr to what is going to happen with the new Mortal Kombat movie. This movie is going start on the web and maybe eventually move to a more physical media like DVD. This is a very interesting idea. It maybe come the new norm, seeing as how popular internet surfing is today. It just keeps growing too.
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