Warner Bros is working towards a potential Minecraft film, but the studio has yet to find the right story. Shawn Levy, director of Night at the Museum, proposed a Goonies-style adventure film which was ultimately shot down by developer Mojang. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Levy explained how it all happened.
“What happened simply is Warner’s asked me to develop, ‘How might this ever be a story for a movie?’ Because it’s not a narrative game. And we came up with an approach that felt good to us, and I discussed it with Mojang. And they’re like, ‘That doesn’t sound like what we want. If we’re going to see a movie get made, we don’t know what we want, but that doesn’t feel right.’ And I said, ‘OK, well that’s a movie I can envision.'”
So just what was his idea? He goes on to explain, “It was not a comedy. It had a bit of a Goonies flair… [I]t was an adventure movie, and I thought it could have been a lot of fun and fulfilled a lot of the qualities that people love about the game.”
Levy accepts the fact his idea was turned down, pointing out how hard it is to make a good video game movie. “[I]t’s not my game; they know what they’re doing. The truth is there is a long history of trying to make great movies out of games, and they’re rarely done well. Mojang is still figuring out what they want. We gave it a shot and it wasn’t the right fit, so, these things happen.”
The Minecraft film is obviously going to be a tough nut to crack, as it will be challenging to create a story for an open-world game without narrative. A movie is still possible, as long as another director steps up with an idea that Mojang will support.