Mobile games are a big deal. Even though certain indie developers are retreating to the PC market most mobile game companies are pleased to be in such a thriving market. In China primarily, but also in the US, the market for casual games is booming. It was only a matter of time before Hollywood caught on. The Temple Run franchise has been wildly successful and its games may make the leap from the tiny screen to the big screen if rumors are true. Harry Potter producer David Heyman would help transform the simple game into a feature film.
In a lot of ways this is rock bottom for Hollywood. The games industry has many fantastic games with intriguing characters and complicated plots. Instead of making a companion movie in the setting of the games, which would be great for The Last of Us or Beyond Two Souls, Hollywood is going to transform a game where you can switch playable characters and it doesn’t even matter. The story will probably be as close to the game’s story as it can be – considering the game doesn’t have a story. It would center on an explorer, but there were six explorers in the original game. That hero would have stolen an idol from a temple and would be chased by demonic forces. That’s not really a two-hour story yet. They certainly need a writer to work on it.
To me, this seems like an almost criminal use of a brand. It seems like Hollywood will latch on to anything that already exists whether it was intended to or even plausible to be converted into movie form. Lynn Harris, who is overseeing the movie doesn’t have a lot of material because even though the game is popular, it’s not known for anything that could be made into a film. There are a bunch of video games that have the potential to become good movies. Temple Run isn’t one of them.
Finally, Raiders of the Lost Ark was a movie with almost exactly the outlined plot. It did well. It did well enough that the people at Imangi Studios who made Temple Run probably saw it. They are similar for a reason. We don’t need a Temple Run movie. The game already has a companion movie starring a fellow named Indiana Jones.