After six disappointing Resident Evil movies, Netflix will reportedly take a stab at the franchise with a television series.
In 2002, Capcom’s beloved survival-horror video game franchise Resident Evil was brought to life on the big screen. Well, sort of.
The movie, which was written and directed by Paul W.S. Anderson, was only loosely based on the video game series. Besides the title, the inclusion of zombies and maybe some very broad references to the game, like Umbrella Corporation and Raccoon City, the 2002 film had very little in common with the video game series.
It introduced us to Alice (Milla Jovovich) who would go on to serve as the main protagonist throughout the franchise, despite it being based on a game that featured plenty of intriguing characters, like Jill Valentine. This was an intentional decision by Anderson as the director reportedly felt like using characters from the games would make the movie too predictable.
Like most other video game adaptations at the time, it was a flop with critics. However, it earned over $100 million at the worldwide box office on just a $33 million budget. More importantly, it spawned an entire film franchise that currently consists of six movies to date. The franchise has cumulatively earned $1.2 billion worldwide, a shocking number considering the poor reception from critics and fans alike.
While later films in the franchise featured appearances from the characters of video game series, the damage had already been done. The movie series had gone so far off the rails, the only thing it had in common with the games towards the end was just its title and maybe a few characters.
But despite the Resident Evil film franchise’s poor standing with fans, there’s clearly a desire to see the beloved video game series brought to life. This is evidenced by the movie franchise ranking as the highest-grossing film series ever based on a video game.
There’s clearly a thirst for zombie blood, which could explain why Netflix is reportedly developing a scripted series based on Resident Evil. According to Deadline, the series will be a Netflix global original from German production and distribution company Constantin Film, the studio behind the Resident Evil movie franchise. That alone has me nervous.
Here’s what Deadline’s Nellie Andreeva had to offer about the series, which has yet to be confirmed by Netflix:
"“No one is commenting but I hear the plan is for the series to expand the Resident Evil universe and deepen the exiting mythology. I hear the series will keep the basic premise, which also served as a setup for the movie franchise. The drama series will explore the dark inner workings of the Umbrella Corporation and the new world order caused by the outbreak of the T-virus. While the project is in early stages, the series is expected to incorporate all of Resident Evil’s signature elements, including action sequences and ‘easter eggs.'”"
There’s a lot of question marks surrounding this project, especially in regards to her description. Constantin Film execs have reportedly been discussing plans to reboot the franchise with the company hiring Johannes Roberts to write and direct a potential feature film with a new cast. It sounds like this series will be linked to the film, which could be kind of neat.
Of course, for me, it will all come down to how authentic it is to the video game series. Are you excited about a possible Netflix series based on Resident Evil?