Ubisoft today announced an update on the Assassin's Creed movies, saying that "the development of a screenplay is beginning immediately and the project is being fast tracked as the creative pieces come together". This fast track is a result of a partnership with film company New Regency.
From what we've seen so far, there are reasons to be excited about the Assassin's Creed film and reasons to be terrified (though these are mitigated by the good things).
Good thing number one:
According to the press release, part of the partnership deal between Ubisoft and New Regency is that Ubisoft "maintain control of key elements of the movie’s creative direction." How much control and what those key elements are isn't clearly stated but the suggestion seems to be the script: “Bringing aboard New Regency’s renowned production and distribution expertise while maintaining our own creative and financial flexibility ensures that Assassin’s Creed will be a high-quality film that respects the lore and fans of the video game franchise,” said Jean-Julien Baronnet, chief executive officer, Ubisoft Motion Pictures.
Good thing number two:
Michael Fassbender is involved. Let's face it, the man can do no wrong. He's amazing in Hunger and Shame, and even does a good job of Magneto in X-Men: First Class.
Worrying thing number one:
Despite Barronnet praising New Regency's "renowned production and distribution expertise", New Regency's recent output has included Alvin and the Chipmunks, Monte Carlo, and Love and Other Drugs. Each of them a horrendous film in their own right, but put them in a sack and you've got a present worse than dead kittens.
(Caveat) In 1994, New Regency were behind Natrual Born Killers. Also, good point number one may mitigate the effect of New Regency on the film, maybe.
Separate to this Assassin's Creed news, Uisoft also announced plans to make feature length CGI films of Splinter Cell and Rainbow Six: "In addition to the Assassin’s Creed movie, the studio also is in production on the Rabbids TV series, a collection of 78 seven-minute CGI episodes based on the insane, hilarious and silly stars of the video game franchise of the same name, in partnership with France Televisions and Nickelodeon. Ubisoft Motion Pictures also has two additional feature-length films in development based on the Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell and Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon video game franchises."