Universal closes in on Nintendo deal for Legend Of Zelda movie

The Legend OF Zelda
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As The Super Mario Bros. Movie continues to add to its impressive box office haul, Universal sets out to adapt another Nintendo favourite. 

The Super Mario Bros. Movie is riding high as the box office hit of 2023, with Universal’s animated take on the beloved Italian plumbers surging to a mighty $1.3bn box office haul, currently the highest that we’ve seen yet this year.

Universal seems to have handled every aspect of the process well, avoiding the kind of costly missteps and damaging gaffes that we’ve previously seen when film studios get their hands on beloved video game properties (such as Universal’s own handling of Street Fighter in the 1990s or more recently, the bungled lead-up to the eventually successful release of Paramount’s Sonic The Hedgehog).

It’s certainly paid off for the studio and as we’ve all been predicting, Universal seems keen to partner up with Nintendo once more to bring another of the video game publisher’s iconic titles to the big screen. According to industry insider Jeff Sneider on The Hot Mic podcast, the studio is looking to kickstart an adaptation of the beloved and long-running fantasy series, The Legend Of Zelda. 

The news won’t be surprising to Nintendo fans given how beloved the video game series is, but Sneider does point out that Universal will have to pay handsomely to seal the deal, given the success of The Super Mario Bros. Movie. 

It’s also expected that Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto will be creatively involved again, as he was with the Mario Bros. film. As the creator of both Mario and Zelda, Miyamoto was quite involved with the production of The Super Mario Bros. Movie. Also certain to be called into action again is Illumination: Universal’s animation studio will be handed the project to develop as its next major franchise.

The video game series, which follows the exploits of Link, a sword-wielding adventurer in the land of Hyrule may not be quite as high-profile as the all-conquering Mario Bros. but the franchise isn’t far behind. The most recent game in The Legend Of Zelda series, Tears Of The Kingdom launched last month and became the fastest-selling video game of all time.

We’ll bring you more on this one as we hear it, but this is the move that everybody was expecting from Universal. Now it’s just a case of waiting for official confirmation of the project.

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