Since they started committing toward making films based on their video games, Ubisoft has mostly focused on getting big names in front of the camera, bringing in Michael Fassbender to star in the Assassin's Creed adaptation and assigning Tom Hardy to the lead role in Splinter Cell, which already came with another big name-- Tom Clancy-- attached to it. Now, for the first time, Ubisoft is bringing in the big guns behind the camera as well. Variety reports Michael Bay is on board to develop Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon as a potential franchise, with an eye toward directing it as well.

The project is set up at Warner Bros., but Ubisoft will remain involved via Ubisoft Motion Pictures-- they're taking a cue from the Marvel Studios playbook and actually getting in on movie production rather than just selling the rights to their titles. Assassin's Creed is already set for a 2015 release, but Ghost Recon could get going just as quickly-- they're currently meeting with screenwriters, and are aiming to start hiring a cast in July. If Bay likes the script the writers come up with, he might decide to direct.

Ghost Recon-- or, rather, the Ghost Recon series-- is massively popular, having existed in 9 different iterations that sold a combined 24 million copies, but if you're a games luddite like me, here are the basic, very Michael Bay-like basics. The game follows a top-secret group of Army Special Forces soldiers called "the Ghosts," with missions coming directly from the President to do all kinds of world-saving stuff-- ending civil unrest in Russia, restoring order during Cuba's first democratic elections in 50 years, rescuing the President from Mexican rebels, all kinds of stuff. Given Bay's background for cooperating with the American military, it's not hard to imagine him giving the franchise some realistic touches, while also including enough over-the-top action to keep gamers and fans of his movies happy.

Bay's Platinum Dunes production company seems to have never met a pre-existing property it didn't like, getting behind everything from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot to an endless string of horror remakes. Bay himself, though, is a lot choosier about the franchises he jumps on board to direct-- Transformers aside, all of his directing projects have been original ideas (or Bad Boys II). Will he make an exception to helm another franchise based on an idea that belongs to another company. Given that his latest original film Pain & Gain has made a tiny $49 million, he might just be ready to get on the pre-made gravy train.

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