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Video games have been a popular source for movies recently. As such, it's not surprising that one of the most popular game franchises, Call of Duty, is being mined for movie material. What is a little surprising is just how much material the studio is apparently mining and how quickly it's been completed. There are apparently already multiple scripts for Call of Duty films that have already been written, meaning that Activision Blizzard's dream of creating a Call of Duty cinematic universe is apparently already coming true.
It was back at the end of 2015 when video game publisher Activision Blizzard announced the formation of their own production studio with an eye to turning their popular game franchises into feature films and television shows. The idea of creating a Call of Duty cinematic universe, in the vein of Marvel Studios was announced then. Cut to a year and a half later and The Guardian reports that studio co-presidents Stacey Sher and Nick van Dyk claim that there are already multiple scripts and the pair are now mapping out how their new film universe will go together.
According to the co-presidents, the existing scripts are written in such a way as to embrace the tone of certain entries within the Call of Duty game series, without being directly based on any of the plots. Stacey Sher says that one script is a film that "feels like" Call of Duty: Black Ops and another is similar to the Modern Warfare franchise. She also mentions a third film which she calls a hybrid, "where you are looking at private, covert operations, while a public operation is going on."
It's clear that Activision Blizzard is in this for the long haul if there are multiple scripts and the beginnings of a planned universe before the first film gets in front of a camera. At this point, it appears the goal for that is for the first movie in the franchise to get underway sometime in 2018.
Call of Duty has been one of the most prolific game series in recent years, releasing a new title every single year. As such, the franchise has plenty of games to help build stories. The franchise began with games set it World War II, and recent indications are that the next game in the series will go back to that era, but the most recent games have been closer to science fiction than modern military combat. There's a good chance that there's a place for those games in this cinematic universe as well.
As much work as Activision Blizzard has done, it will all come down to the critical and commercial success of the first Call of Duty movie, whenever that actually happens.