Bringing a Popular Video Game to the Big Screen:
Behind the Scenes of WARCRAFT
By Ben Kayser, Managing Editor
The global press conference for WARCRAFT started off with a bit of a surprise. Few of the stars were familiar with the extremely popular video game on which the movie is based until they heard about the project.
Attending the press conference were Writer/Director Duncan Jones, and stars Paula Patton, Toby Kebbell, Ben Schnetzer, Robert Kazinsky, and Travis Fimmel, who’s most known for starring in History Channels VIKINGS.
WARCRAFT is a fantasy movie based on the video game that had a large following for several years. Set in a fantasy world, Azeroth is a land inhabited by many species, including humans, dwarfs, ancient magicians, and other creatures. When a horde of orcs crosses through a magical portal from another universe, Azeroth is threatened. However, certain orcs don’t trust their power hungry leaders and want to protect their family. A series of betrayals and partnerships between characters in this fantastical world leads to an epic battle.
Duncan Jones began the press conference by discussing why he was interested in the project.
“One reason is that science fiction has had a number of different sub-genres over the years,” he said. “There’s a big spectrum of what science fiction can be. And, in fantasy, the gorilla in the room is the LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy.”
Duncan continued: “It kind of feels like the spectrum of what is fantasy feels smaller than what is science fiction. So I loved the opportunity to try a film which would hopefully reach the same bar of the LORD OF THE RINGS, but give fantasy a little bit of a new voice.”
While most of the actors had their first introduction to the world of WARCRAFT through the script, Robert Kazinsky, who plays a tough orc, was an avid fan of the game and eagerly sought out a role.
“I think I offered to pay Legendary to have a role in it,” he laughed. “For me, this game has been my life for 12 years. So, it feels like a full circle for me to be in this.”
Kazinsky also discussed the pressure to make the movie the best it could be.
“I needed this film to be good,” he explained. “After 20 years and $10 billion dollars given to Blizzard, we deserved this movie to be good. You’d be amazed at how many people worked on this film mysteriously actually played the game and all felt the pressure to deliver something that would represent the hardcore gamer, like myself. The best way they did that was by simply telling a great story. We’ve been making movies of Jesus for a long time and he died 2000 years ago, and about ancient Egypt and Cleopatra. A good story is a good story.”
Actor Ben Schnetzer added, “It wasn’t a film covering what it was like to play this game. It was a film [with] a great script, a great director.”
Read MOVIEGUIDE®’s full review for WARCRAFT here.
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