As Sega’s boss talks about turning more of its old games into movies following Sonic’s success, we’ve come up with a few not-entirely-serious suggestions of our own.
You’ll probably have different memories of Sega depending on your age. If you’re incredibly ancient, like some of us, you may remember its early 80s arcade hits and consoles like the Sega Master System and Super Hang-On. If you’re less old, perhaps you have dim recollections of the criminally underrated Dreamcast – Sega’s ahead-of-its-time console that marked the end of its tenure in the hardware market. If you’re annoyingly young, maybe you just think of Sega as the company that makes those Sonic The Hedgehog games and films.
The point is, Sega has been going for over 60 years now, and has a huge back catalogue of games (or ‘intellectual properties’ as business types like to call them) to fall back on. Sega boss Shuji Utsumi has noted this himself in a recent interview with CNBC, in which he talked about all the ways Sega could leverage its games and franchises in ways that mimicked the success of the Sonic The Hedgehog movies.
Admittedly, Utsumi wasn’t just talking about films – he’s also keen to do more stuff like having characters appear in places kids are congregating these days, like Sonic’s official Roblox game from last year. Also, it’s more likely that Sega will concentrate on its other recent successes, including the Like A Dragon series of games (once called Yakuza), Persona, and the recently-acquired Angry Birds.
This is our list, though, and as far as we’re concerned, there’s a solid argument that Sega should pump millions of dollars into producing film adaptations of its more obscure 1980s and 90s output. Needless to say, these adaptations should be made with only the finest filmmakers and actors the planet has to offer.
With this in mind, here’s our not-entirely-serious list of suggestions:
Director: Pete Docter
Stars: Meryl Streep, Jake Gyllenhaal
Synopsis: Based on Sega’s 1984 arcade game of the same name, the CG-animated Flicky sees the titular mother bird (Streep) attempt to rescue her brood of chicks from multiple floors of a surreal apartment building filled with hungry cats and, unaccountably, iguanas (all played by Gyllenhaal). Flicky the mother bird learns some valuable life lessons along the way. We’ve pitched it to Pixar as The Raid meets It’s A Wonderful Life.
Chances of happening: We accosted Pete Docter in a San Francisco car park and he threatened to call the police.
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Stars: Jason Momoa, Gal Gadot, Peter Dinklage, Chris Hemsworth
Synopsis: Three unlikely heroes – Ax-Battler (Momoa), Tyris Flare (Gadot) and Gilius Thunderhead (Hemsworth) – team up to save the mythical land of Yuria from the evil Death Adder (Dinklage) in a high fantasy epic. Will be elegantly shot by Villeneuve as a two-part saga, with the first part concluding with our heroes gathered around a campfire, boosting their energy by beating a bunch of harmless elves to death.
Chances of happening: Villeneuve has said he’ll do it if we please just stop hanging around near his driveway.
Director: Joseph Kosinski
Stars: Tom Cruise
Synopsis: After more than thirty years of service, a top pilot (Cruise) finds himself training a detachment of rookie aviators for a specialised mission the likes of which no living pilot has ever seen. All similarities to Top Gun: Maverick are entirely coincidental.
Chances of happening: We’ve already had a cease-and-desist letter from Paramount’s lawyers, so not high.
Director: Paul Schrader
Stars: Adam Driver
Synopsis: Once a console-selling celebrity and Sega mascot, Alex Kidd (Driver) now lives alone in a rundown part of New York. Making ends meet as an Uber driver, Kidd cuts a lonely figure – at least until he meets another out-of-work Sega star, Opa-Opa (Robert De Niro) who points out that the now insanely wealthy Sonic the Hedgehog has a holiday home in the Hamptons. Horrendous violence eventually ensues.
Chances of happening: We’re waiting for Mr Schrader to accept our friend request on Facebook. More on this as it develops.
Director: James Cameron
Stars: Sam Worthington
Synopsis: Following a harrowing car crash, door-to-door encyclopedia salesman Jim ‘Space’ Harrier (Worthington) wakes up in the mysterious Fantasy Zone. Hearing a mysterious voice cry out, “Get ready,” the hapless Jim is swept through a seemingly endless wasteland, his only choice being to shoot an army of strange creatures in the hope of finding a means of escape. Will be filmed using the glasses-free 3D technology James Cameron promised us for Avatar 2 but didn’t deliver. A motion-captured Sigourney Weaver makes a cameo as a one-eyed woolly mammoth.
Chances of happening: Cameron’s people have told us he’ll be getting right onto Space Harrier once he’s finished with the Avatar franchise in 2097.
Director: Zack Snyder
Stars: Hiroyuki Sanada
Synopsis: Seasoned ninja Joe Musashi (Sanada) comes out of retirement to rescue some kidnapped children from an evil criminal organisation. An uncredited Ana de Armas cameos as the face of Marilyn Monroe on some posters in the background for some reason.
Chances of happening: We’ve suddenly realised that we genuinely want to see this one happen. Unfortunately, Snyder can’t promise us that he won’t shoot the entire thing in slow-motion.
Streets Of Rage
Director: Derek Kolstad
Stars: Glen Powell, Ana de Armas, Michael B Jordan.
Synopsis: Tough young cops Axel Stone (Powell), Blaze Fielding (de Armas) and Adam Hunter (Jordan) fight a city’s criminal underbelly the only way they know how – with their bare knuckles. All joking aside, this one does actually sound like it’s happening, with Kolstad (creator of John Wick and writer of Bob Odenkirk beat-’em-up, Nobody) said to be adapting the 90s brawler last year. There’s no word on the cast yet – we made that bit up. Nor do we know whether the heroes will eat roast chickens hidden in bins, in time-honoured Streets Of Rage style.
Chances of happening: Probably a lot more likely than anything else in this list.
Director: Lynne Ramsey
Stars: Barry Keoghan, Emma Roberts
Synopsis: At the behest of a heartless movie mogul (Dave Zaslav, cameoing as himself), young gopher Geoff (Keoghan) is tasked with driving a brand new Ferrari from New York to Los Angeles in less than 36 hours – without being caught speeding. Or crashing. Roberts stars as a casting director along for the ride who, curiously, doesn’t say a single word to Geoff for the entire journey. Script by Steve Zaillian.
Chances of happening: Zaslav has told us he’ll bankroll it, but can’t promise he won’t delete it from the studio hard drives afterwards.