News Archive - January, 2021
Mortal Kombat Mobile Spotlights Klassic Kombatants
Choose your klassic!

Since launching in conjunction with MKX: Mortal Kombat Mobile has become a platform for an increasingly eclectic mix of kombat characters. The mobile developer has celebrated the addition of Klassic Noob Saibot with a spotlight on its range of retro rivals. Take a look:

The graphic is a fun nod to the character select screens of arcade and console games, repurposing renders of the various MK Mobile Klassic fighters to highlight a roster of characters worthy of the legendary games they emulate!

Noob Saibot and Smoke are the two most recent characters to get klassic incarnations inspired by Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3. Their palette swap renders stand-in for 2-player selections and can be seen in action in recent Noob Saibot reveal & gameplay and Smoke reveal & gameplay trailers.

The rest of the character select line-up features homages to UMK3 Ermac, MK Sonya Blade, MKII Liu Kang, MK3 Jax, MK Raiden, UMK3 Sub-Zero, MK Goro, UMK3 Scorpion, MKII Mileena, and UMK3 Reptile -- all unlockable to control in Mortal Kombat Mobile!

Does this original Trilogy throwback hit you right in the warm & fuzzies? MK Mobile is free-to-play on iOS and Android via the App Store and Google Play! You can also download the MKO App via App Store and Google Play to interact with the site and receive updates to your device! Leave a like & comment for this story below below, and find more to discover in the Mortal Kombat 11 & 2D Kombat Klassics forums!

Movie IP Licensor Announces New Gaming Deals
MK11 licensor announces new deals!

In the last decade big screen interlopers have become a staple attraction for the Mortal Kombat gaming franchise. John Rambo was the latest cinematic icon to crossover in Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate and we have Creative Licensing Corporation to thank for that. According to a new report, the licensor has started the year by announcing its latest gaming deals. Read on for details:

Industry tracker License Global reports the announcement of new game deals for the movie IP manager, including Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate, Fortnite, Dead by Daylight, Evil Dead: The Game, and World of Tanks.

The report does not specify the details of these new deals, but does cite some of the noteworthy franchises Creative Licensing handles, including Rambo, The Terminator, Evil Dead 2, and John Carpenter properties Escape From New York and Halloween. They do this on behalf of rights holders STUDIOCANAL and Compass International Pictures.

[Related Article: Rambo vs Terminator Mortal Kombat 11 Trailers]

In addition to appearing in MK11; Sylverster Stallone's Rambo likeness has crossed over with World of Tanks, alongside stars of the Escape From New York and Missing In Action films. Terminator's T-800 and Sarah Connor recently entered the world of Fortnite.

All of these appearances have occurred within the last three months, making it difficult to speculate about any future developments. Mortal Kombat 11 notably had a close call with Evil Dead, and has a confirmed past interest in Halloween, but no legitimate conclusions can be drawn from this latest announcement.

NetherRealm Studios has returned for motion capture for something new, and is tentatively expected to release additional downloadable content for Mortal Kombat 11. Would you like to see more guest characters? Share your wishlist in the comments below and find & discuss more in the Mortal Kombat 11 forum.

New HBO Max Trailer Previews Mortal Kombat Action
Sonya Blade has an invitation!

The new Mortal Kombat feature film will premiere simultaneously in limited theatrical release & direct to streaming, and in the latest trailer for Warner's HBO Max we can see a little bit more of the action that's soon to come. Watch it right here:

The trailer repeats scenes of Sub-Zero (Joe Taslim) and Earthrealm's fighters already seen in the previous HBO Max video, but also unleashes a better look at Sonya Blade and more of the film's action-packed opening featuring Hiroyuki Sanada as Hanzo Hasashi!

Australian actress Jessica McNamee is front and centre in a very Sonya appropriate green tanktop, pointing to a research board emblazoned with the name of the movie. She can be heard dramatically referring to an "invitation to Mortal Kombat" -- something she apparently knows a lot about.

New creation Cole Young (Lewis Tan) will find his way to Raiden's temple and the Mortal Kombat tournament after being direct to Sonya by Major Jackson Briggs. Sonya is not referred to by any military rank in the official synopsis and how she came about her information remains to be seen.

In a rapid showcase of all the movies coming to HBO Max we can also see a second of an unidentified warrior standing in the middle of a street, arms out stretched and surrounded by ash or snow. The dark warrior is probably Sub-Zero, who returns in the service of Shang Tsung having fought Scorpion in the movie's ten-minute opener set in feudal Japan. Their conflict was revealed in an Entertainment Weekly preview, with writer Greg Russo explaining the role further.

Mortal Kombat will also be officially released to theatres on April 16th where possible. Posters for the film have already begun appearing at cinemas. Get notices by subscribing to our release countdown and find more in the Media & Merchandise forum! Share your thoughts about the latest preview in the comments below!

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
Klassic Noob Saibot Mortal Kombat Mobile Trailers
Blessed by shadow!

Another warrior steps out of the darkest region of reality to enter the arena of Mortal Kombat Mobile! The dark wraith officially returns in retro style when Klassic Noob Saibot exits the portal soon. Watch the trailer:

Watch: MK Mobile Klassic Noob Reveal Trailer | MK Mobile Klassic Noob Gameplay Trailer

The once passive observer is inspired by his klassic appearances in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 and Mortal Kombat (2011). He joins his recently added future MK11 self in the playable roster, as well as Klassic Smoke, MK11 Shang Tsung, MK11 Scorpion, and MK11 Sub-Zero!

You can join the Brothers of Shadow by downloading Mortal Kombat Mobile for free on iOS or android via the App Store and Google Play. Connect with MK Online by downloading the free MKO App via App Store and Google Play to like this story and share your comments. Cast a dark cloud over the Mortal Kombat 11 forum for more news & discussion!

NetherRealm Studios Returns to Motion Capture Studio
What's next?

Business at NetherRealm Studios has resumed with members of staff returning to the great motion capture facility at their Chicago HQ. Senior Animator Andy Senesac shared a photo from the studio, where he was "blowing off the dust" to the delight of Twitter speculators. Details:

The facial animation specialist worked on cinematics and character animation for Mortal Kombat 11 & Aftermath. Dressed in a grey MK11 tee and pandemic-conscientious tie dye facecover, the animator explained in his own words he's "prepping for the next show!"

A thinking emoji invites speculation for what the "next show" could be. Although Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate brought the complete experience to next generation consoles, further downloadable content is still expected for the best-selling fighting game. This is consistent with a 2019 statement by WB Interactive Entertainment President Matthew Haddad, who stressed there would be "years of content" to come.

The release of MK11 Ultimate & Kombat Pack 2 last November added Mileena, Rain & John Rambo to a stacked roster of thirty-four playable characters, including ten prior DLC additions.

The total has already far exceeded Injustice 2's previous peak of 9 additional post-release character slots. MK11 Aftermath also expanded the game with the first ever downloadable story chapters.

What do you think or hope could be next? Share your predictions in the comments below and dive into the Mortal Kombat 11 forum for more! Fight Klub is a new way to play in a league of it's own and is now in open beta. Follow the link to explore more.

Mortal Kombat Movie Posters Spotted at Theatres
Cinemas prepare for battle!

Mortal Kombat will notably be one of the blockbuster films that debuts streaming on HBO Max as part of a new COVID conscientious WarnerMedia strategy, but will also enjoy a limited theatrical release in select markets. Fans have already started to see the updated Dragon Logo appearing at cinemas, sharing photos to social media. Take a look:

Writer Greg Russo invited fans to send him snaps of the movie poster, receiving images from @itsBeMoeHoney and @Philwest4151. The photos show posters in Texas and San Francisco.

Mortal Kombat will arrive in theatres and streaming on April 16th. Subscribe to the calendar countdown to receive alerts and join the Media & Merchandise for more discussion! Got something to show us? Share your photos on the forums or on social media @MK_Online, Facebook and Discord!

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
Behind The Scenes Mortal Kombat Movie Photo Shows Large Fighter
Beware of spoilers!

The Mortal Kombat movie reboot has started to give up some of its secrets, but even with an official synopsis and first-look photos -- there is still much to be discovered from the April release! A behind-the-scenes photo appears to reveal a towering figure manhandling one of the series' klassic fighters. Beware of spoilers all ye who enter:

The photograph has been circulating across social media networks, with the earliest available source a Twitter user named João Henrique. The image shows monitors during the filming a scene that appears to depict Jax in the clutches of a large, hammer-wielding warrior who is purported to be Reiko.

Mehcad Brooks, or a stunt double, can be seen in a suspension harness to allow him to be effortlessly raised by his opponent in a goozle grip. His torso is blue to facilitate special effects, either the addition of something like his metal arms, or perhaps an event that necessitates them. Jax' arms were removed in a similar battle with Goro in the recent animated feature.

The big man is believed to be 6'11" Australian actor Nathan Jones. The former pro wrestler has appeared memorably in movies such as Mad Max: Fury Road and Troy, and has frequently alluded to filming Mortal Kombat in South Australia on his Facebook account.

The actor appears to have a rich, black sliver of hair atop his typically bald noggin, in a fashion that might conceivably be inspired by Reiko's appearance in Mortal Kombat: Armageddon.

Adding further credence to the claim that this might be Reiko is a previous script leak, and 2019 set visit by South Australian premier Steven Marshall, which appeared to show character artwork for Reiko, Goro, Reptile, and Kabal pinned in the background of a publicity photo [pictured below]. The scene also seems to match a first-look image released by EW showing Jax pushing against an unidentified fighter's large hammer.

What do you think the behind-the-scenes photo shows? Share your thoughts in the comments below and discover more from the movie in the Media & Merchandise forum!

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
MK11 Pro Kompetition Player Disqualified For Variation Name
Event pulls player mid-match.

As the North American branch of the official MK11 Pro Kompetition unfolded last weekend; there was an unexpected interruption to the broadcast event that resulted in the disqualification of player Titaniumtigerzz. Read on for details:

Kotaku brought the story to light, unpacking an abrupt transition in the live HBO Max feed that interrupted a January 16th match between Titaniumtigerzz and Krispifungus.

Befuddled and bemused commentators described the sudden halt in play as a "situation". Whilst seemingly receiving information via headset, announcer Miguel “Darth Arma” Perez noted at the time, "I don't know what we can publicly say". He later ambiguously referenced the rules, encouraging everyone to be "respectful".

Even players were left unclear of what transpired as Krispifungus was defaulted into the next round. Titaniumtigerzz told Kotaku he was later informed in the intervening time by a tournament moderator that the cause for disqualification was a custom variation name: "WhyDidNRSDoThis".

The unknowingly prophetic, tongue-in-cheek variation was assigned to Sheeva: a downloadable Aftermath addition who has drawn criticism from competitive players for an unblockable teleport stomp called the Dragon Drop.

Skilled players can counter the special attack with specific well-timed moves, or a forward dash, but excessive use of the Dragon Drop is considered by many an easy way for Sheeva players to gain a competitive edge.

Despite the noted gameplay issues; MK11 Pro Kompetition organizers have drawn criticism from the playerbase for the handling of Titaniumtigerzz' offending reference. Along with receiving no immediate clear direction after being allowed to initiate play, he was also given no opportunity to alter the name.

The scenario is an inevitable outcome of the recent addition of custom variations to competitive play -- a featured added last November with Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate. The Pro Kompetition has no specific rules preventing this type of knowing meta-textual reference. The decision to disqualify instead falls under the catchall of a code of conduct.

NetherRealm Studios and WB Games have not yet responded to Kotaku at the time of this publication. Mortal Kombat Online has not reached out for comment.

Titaniumtigerzz will play on, telling Kotaku he will not be deterred by the outcome as a competitive player: "I might hate how they do things but at the end of the day it’s their game and I don’t have any other options."

Have your say in the comments below and find more stories to discuss by joining the kommunity in the Mortal Kombat 11 forum. Go deeper into the competitive scene in the Fight Klub forum -- the home of MK Online's live & interactive league now in public beta!

Insert Coin Documentary Blu-Ray Pre-Order Discount
Get $5 off pre-orders with MKO code!

Retro gaming documentary Insert Coin: The Midway Chronicles tells the story of renegade publisher Midway Games in the 1990s from the perspective of those who were actually there. The movie, featuring Mortal Kombat and beyond, can now be yours to own on blu-ray with a special Mortal Kombat Online discount code! Read on:

You can pre-order the Insert Coin Special Edition Blu-Ray right now from the official website link with a an earliybird price of $19.99. Knock a further $5 off when you use the discount code MKONLINE!

The first 100 pre-orders will also receive a collectible Insert Coin logo pin. Blu-Ray discs are expected to begin shipping January 30th. After that the standard price will revert to $24.99 -- so don't delay!

Insert Coin also made its streaming debut late last year on Alamo On Demand, and can now be found for digital purchase or rental on iTunes, >Amazon Prime.

Learn more about the journey to create the documentary in MK Online's interview with director Josh Tsui and watch the trailer right here. Find and discuss more from Midway's arcade era in the 2D Kombat Klassics forum!

Mortal Kombat Writer Corrects Key Movie Details
EW preview and press release corrections.

The gears of the great promotion machine have begun grinding out details from April's Mortal Kombat cinematic reboot, but apparently some of the information has been in error. Writer Greg Russo has addressed some of fans' concerns about character specifics via social media. Read on for clarifications:

Responding to worries raised by the Entertainment Weekly preview article via Twitter; Russo confirmed that anomalous references to "Outer World", instead of Outworld, were indeed a typing error [by EW]. The EW source article has since been corrected.

He also expanded upon the details of Sub-Zero's present day return in the film, clarifying that his powers of cryomancy will have fully developed when Shang Tsung sends him to attack Cole Young, rather than having been magically granted to him.

In the new film's action-packed opening sequence, Bi-Han will have fought his rival Scorpion hundreds of years in the past, rather than just prior to the MK tournament, as in game canon. The change is reminiscent of the webseries Mortal Kombat: Legacy, which also transposed their battles to feudal Japan.

Composite image showing more of Sub-Zero's mask in the HBO Max trailer.

These typos have apparently persisted within official press material as well. The writer revealed references to Raiden as an "Elder God" and Shang Tsung as "Emperor of Outworld" are both mistakes that don't reflect their status within the movie.

Fans have known Shao Kahn as Emperor of Outworld since Mortal Kombat II. His desire to conquer Earthrealm was the overarching threat of the first three installments of the game series. Shang Tsung appears subservient in all three: as an emissary at the Mortal Kombat tournament, and servant the Emperor thereafter.

Traditionally a hierarchy has also existed separating Mortal Kombat's gods, such as Raiden and Fujin, from typically formless Elder Gods. Raiden briefly ascended to Elder Godhood after MK4, but relinquished his position in its sequel - Deadly Alliance. More recent games have blurred these distinctions with the introduction of playable Elder Goddess Cetrion, and the Titan Kronika.

[Related Article: Mortal Kombat Movie Set References MK11 Fighters]

Speaking to the absence of Johnny Cage in pre-release materials, Russo ambiguously says "[n]o one will be replaced" and "[n]o one has been forgotten". Whether or not this actually confirms the klassic characters' inclusion in the 2021 film remains to be seen.

Mortal Kombat will tell the story of original character Cole Young as he explores a lost heritage and mysterious dragon birthmark. The movie debuts in limited domestic theatrical release and streaming to HBO Max on April 16th.

Subscribe to the release event to track the countdown to release and dive into the Media & Merchandise forum for more detailed information. Don't forget to share your thoughts in the comments!

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
WB Release Official Mortal Kombat Movie Synopsis
Feel your arcana!

We learned a lot about the plot of the upcoming Mortal Kombat movie from last week's Entertainment Weekly preview, but now Warner Brothers has laid the basic premise out with an official synopsis. Read on for the full press release:

Original character Cole Young (Lewis Tan) will indeed be at the center of a story that sees him sharing a dragon-like birthmark with Jax (Mehcad Brooks), who sends him on a path to the Mortal Kombat tournament. Cole must learn to unlock his "arcana" -- the soul power of his heritage -- to thwart Outworld Emperor Shang Tsung (Chin Han), and save his family and Earthrealm.

The plot appears to reveal significant changes to established game canon, including the roles of characters, and the invention of arcane birthmarks in a sub-plot reminiscent of the last cinematic adaptation - Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. Read the full press release below: Update: Writer Greg Russo has offered corrections to mistakes contained within the press release.

From New Line Cinema comes the explosive new cinematic adventure “Mortal Kombat,” inspired by the blockbuster video game franchise, which most recently enjoyed the most successful video game launch in its history, Mortal Kombat 11. The film is helmed by award-winning Australian commercial filmmaker Simon McQuoid, marking his feature directorial debut, and produced by James Wan (“The Conjuring” universe films, “Aquaman,”), Todd Garner (“Into the Storm,” “Tag”), McQuoid and E. Bennett Walsh (“Men in Black: International,” “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”).

In “Mortal Kombat,” MMA fighter Cole Young, accustomed to taking a beating for money, is unaware of his heritage—or why Outworld's Emperor Shang Tsung has sent his best warrior, Sub-Zero, an otherworldly Cryomancer, to hunt Cole down. Fearing for his family's safety, Cole goes in search of Sonya Blade at the direction of Jax, a Special Forces Major who bears the same strange dragon marking Cole was born with. Soon, he finds himself at the temple of Lord Raiden, an Elder God and the protector of Earthrealm, who grants sanctuary to those who bear the mark. Here, Cole trains with experienced warriors Liu Kang, Kung Lao and rogue mercenary Kano, as he prepares to stand with Earth’s greatest champions against the enemies of Outworld in a high stakes battle for the universe. But will Cole be pushed hard enough to unlock his arcana—the immense power from within his soul—in time to save not only his family, but to stop Outworld once and for all?

The diverse international cast reflects the global nature of the brand, with talent spanning the worlds of film, television and martial arts. The ensemble includes Lewis Tan (“Deadpool 2,” Netflix’s “Wu Assassins”) as Cole Young; Jessica McNamee (“The Meg”) as Sonya Blade; Josh Lawson (“Bombshell”) as Kano; Tadanobu Asano (“Midway”) as Lord Raiden; Mehcad Brooks (TV’s “Supergirl”) as Jackson “Jax” Bridges; Ludi Lin (“Aquaman”) as Liu Kang; with Chin Han (“Skyscraper”) as Shang Tsung; Joe Taslim (“Star Trek Beyond”) as Bi-Han and Sub-Zero; and Hiroyuki Sanada (“Skyscraper”) as Hanzo Hasashi and Scorpion. Also featured are Max Huang as Kung Lao; Sisi Stringer as Mileena; Matilda Kimber as Emily Young; and Laura Brent as Allison Young.

McQuoid directed from a screenplay by Greg Russo and Dave Callaham (“Wonder Woman 1984”), from a story by Oren Uziel (“Mortal Kombat: Rebirth”) and Russo, based on the videogame created by Ed Boon and John Tobias. Richard Brener, Dave Neustadter, Victoria Palmeri, Michael Clear, Jeremy Stein and Larry Kasanoff served as executive producers.

Bringing the hugely popular property to the big screen, McQuoid led a team of Australian and U.S. filmmakers, including director of photography Germain McMicking (“True Detective,” “Top of the Lake: China Girl”), production designer Naaman Marshall (“Underwater,” “Servant”), editors Dan Lebental (“Spider-Man: Far From Home”) and Scott Gray (“Top of the Lake,” “Daffodils”), visual effect supervisor Chris Godfrey (“Hacksaw Ridge”) and costume designer Cappi Ireland (“Lion,” “The Rover”). The music is by Benjamin Wallfisch (“Blade Runner 2049,” the “IT” films).

New Line Cinema Presents an Atomic Monster/Broken Road Production, “Mortal Kombat.” The film is set for release nationwide on April 16, 2021 in theaters and will be available in the U.S. on HBO Max for 31 days from theatrical release. It will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures.

Witness the first video footage released from the film in the HBO Max promo trailer and catch-up on more first-look photos to see more of the cast.

Mortal Kombat will debut simultaneously in limited theatrical release and streaming to HBO Max in the United States on April 16th. Subscribe to the release countdown for reminders and check out the Media & Merchandise forum to share your thoughts on every development from the movie!

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
Mortal Kombat Featured in HBO Max Preview Trailer
First video from the new movie!

The first preview of the upcoming Mortal Kombat movie reboot has given us extensive plot details and images to ponder. A trailer is yet to surface -- but the latest promotion for HBO Max has offered an appetizer, providing the first video footage released from the feature film! Watch closely:

Most prominently featured is a close-up of Sub-Zero crafting a weapon from ice. The frosty 1 second clip gives full motion to the previously released photo of Joe Taslim as Bi-Han, revealing more of a metallic mask behind the icy sword.

Another blade snaps resonantly just prior to Sub-Zero's appearance, as if challenging the Lin Kuei warrior in a manner we might expect of a ninja arch-nemesis, although we cannot yet be certain of the wielder's identity. The only clues are a brassy metallic wrist guard and spiky projections at the shoulder.

Pay close attention to the montage of action, moviestars, and expositional text and be rewarded with an even fresher perspective. Director Simon McQuoid told Entertainment Weekly he wanted "the dirt to come through", and the barren Australian landscape is indeed well represented at the moment the advert announces "NEW MOVIES".

Although the quartet of kombatants has their backs turned to us, we can surmise from their attire and stature that this is likely Kano, Liu Kang, Sonya Blade, and Cole Young gazing into the great yonder.

Preview photos have thus far eschewed Kano's trademark cybernetic face plate. The director says this isn't a "shiny" movie. Instead, Australian comedy actor Josh Lawson is furnished with three jagged scars pointing towards an eyeball that reflects a suspiciously red retina. Another preview photo offered something more familiar: Jessica McNamee pinning Lawson in dirt that looks very similar to what we see in the video.

Kano will apparently be training at Raiden's temple when Lewis Tan's new journeyman Cole Young arrives under Sonya Blade's direction. There we will also see Ludi Lin as Liu Kang, which may in some way provide context for the unlikely gathering in the image included above.

[Related Article: Neo Was Nearly The One For Mortal Kombat]

Warner Brothers has a full slate of feature films debuting simultaneously in limited theatrical release, and streaming directly via the HBO Max service. Various genre pictures can be seen teased, including DC's The Suicide Squad and a fourth Matrix film. Appropriate enough, given Keanu Reeves' Neo was considered for a guest spot in the 2011 Mortal Kombat video game.

Mortal Kombat is scheduled to officialy premiere theatrically & streaming on April 16th. Are you looking forward to it? Subscribe to the release countdown and share your thoughts about the video teaser in the comments below! Discover more by diving into the Media & Merchandise forum!

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
Mortal Kombat Movie Releases Preview Photos
More Shaolin Monks & Cole Young!

Fans have been granted their first look at the upcoming Mortal Kombat movie in an exclusive feature article from Entertainment Weekly. Now you can further digest what you've seen with unmarked photos -- including new images of the Shaolin Monks and controversial Cole Young! Look:

One of the new images appears to show Lewis Tan working to lock an armbar on an anonymous cage fighter in a dingy arena. EW confirmed Tan will play a fallen mixed martial arts champion, Cole Young, fulfilling widely circulated rumors of a featured character exploring a hidden past.

A dragon-like birthmark will take Cole Turner to the Mortal Kombat tournament, where he'll encounter traditional icons from the popular video games, including its Shaolin Monks protagonists. The birthmark isn't visible in any of the photos, making it difficult to know if it ties into a previously seen alternative logo.

The new preview photo [below] shows our second glimpse of Liu Kang and Kung Lao. This will be the first time Kung Lao and his iconic bladed-hat will appear in a feature film, although Mark Dacascos previously played a live-action version of the character in Mortal Kombat: Legacy Series II.

The full body shot of actors Ludi Lin and Max Huang show promising reflections of the video game characters, revealing more of their iconic red costume highlights. Liu Kang's hands glow with dragon flame, suggesting the martial arts mysticism of the games will be represented.

Additional photographs released via the official movie Twitter include repeats from the EW article, sans watermark. Narrow images of Sub-Zero (Joe Taslim), Jax (Mehcad Brooks), and Kano (Josh Lawson) imply letterboxed stills from the movie. Larger images include Sonya Blade (Jessica McNamee) and Scorpion (Hiroyuki Sanada).

Mortal Kombat will be released theatrically and streaming to HBO Max on April 16th. Share your thoughts about the new stills in the comments below and discover more from the movie in the Media & Merchandise forum.

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
Entertainment Weekly Previews Mortal Kombat Movie
Pics & plot laid out in EW feature!

Entertainment Weekly has at long last given fans the first glimpse of the upcoming live-action Mortal Kombat feature film reboot. An in-depth article is part of their 2021 cinematic preview series, which includes many juicy details and first-look photos. Read on for more:

In Entertainment Weekly's article fans will find an expected blend of familiar video game canon and the type of adaptation tropes we've seen in other recent spin-off versions of the franchise, such as Scorpion's Revenge and Mortal Kombat: Legacy.

Completely new to the franchise will be Cole Young: an already notorious character to be played by Lewis Tan, who is described by the actor as "kind of a washed-up MMA fighter who used to be a champion".

True to widely circulated rumors, the tape-fisted fighter does indeed appear to be down on his luck. Also true to expectation: he appears to be an entry character for penetrating established lore, which he may have a hidden connection to per a mysterious dragon-like birthmark. Tan elaborates, "... along the journey of Mortal Kombat and Cole discovering where he comes from, you're introduced to all these other iconic characters and elements that everybody loves so dearly."

Cole knows nothing of his heritage aside from the mysterious birthmark on his chest — in the shape of the Mortal Kombat symbol. Tan remains mum on how this birthmark connects to the character's origins but agrees "it's a unique symbol" that "will eventually tie into the journey that he's going on." It remains the only clue Cole has when the sinister sorcerer and emperor of the realm Outerworld, Shang Tsung (Skyscraper's Chin Han), sends Sub-Zero, now with his cryomancy powers, to hunt him down.

Cole will apparently connect with many of Mortal Kombat's iconic fighters as he passes from Jax (Mehcad Brooks), to Sonya Blade (Jessica McNamee), and "Elder God" Lord Raiden (Tadanabou Asano), who offers sanctuary at a temple where Kano (Josh Lawson), Liu Kang (Ludi Lin), and Kung Lao (Max Huang) will be training for the tournament. A photo of the Shaolin Monks displays two of the more exciting live-action creations.

As it was in Legacy; the iconic rivalry between Scorpion and Sub-Zero is transposed from recent history to the distant past of feudal era Japan hundreds of years ago. Their battle will apparently dominate the opening of the film, which reportedly dedicates 10 minutes to a violent struggle between Joe Taslim's Bi-Han and Hiroyuki Sanada's kunai-gardening family man, Hanzo Hasashi.

Director Simon McQuoid waxes philosophical in the article about the implications of blood in the series, citing its inspiration beyond the mere stains splattered at the feet of fighters. He describes blood's importance to identity and connection, which no doubt underscores the family tragedy that famously befalls Hasashi, described as "leader of a ninja clan".

McQuoid also explains the aesthetic of the film, which seems very apparent in photos supplied by Warner Bros, particularly in the photo of Joe Taslim attacking Sanada [included below]. "It's not a shiny film… I wanted the dirt and the grime to come through." This rings true in understated costume design and a muted colour palette.

Mysterious tattoos -- or a birthmark, in Cole Young's case -- that provide passage to Raiden's temple may recall Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, but the director reiterates the filmmakers' intent to pay homage and respect to the series' famed lore: "I wanted to make sure that everyone respected the material, the lore of Mortal Kombat, the fans and the love they have for this. Everyone was clear on it"

Key to this homage of series "lore" is also the fatalities the game is known for. McQuoid introduces EW's readers to the prospect of brutal R rated violence -- something we've heard consistently throughout production: "We had a lot of discussions about getting the balance right so there was gore and there was blood and there were fatalities."

Mortal Kombat will debut in theatres and streaming to HBO Max on April 16th. A trailer is expected soon. Share your first impressions with us in the comments below and follow more from the movie in the Media & Merchandise forum!

Mortal Kombat Movie Release
04/23/2021 03:00 AM EDT
Mortal Kombat Conquest Actor John Reilly Passes Age 84
Television star remembered.

Television actor John Reilly has passed away at the age of 84. Best remembered for his recurring role on General Hospital, he was also a featured star in the movie-length Mortal Kombat: Conquest pilot in the late nineties.

Variety reported the actor's passing via his daughter and TikTok personality, Caitlin Reilly, who shared a touching message to her late father via Instagram. No cause of death has been stated.

Reilly was a familiar face on American television from the mid 1970s. He made single appearances on live-action genre programmes like Wonder Woman and The Incredible Hulk, before landing the role of investigator Sean Donely on the soap opera General Hospital in 1984.

In 1998 he appeared as Baron Reyland in the opening two-part story "Warrior Eternal", which also aired as a single feature-length presentation in some markets.

Reyland is the volatile father of Kung Lao's forbidden love interest, and the catalyst that brings together the series' three disparate heroes as a Baron of Zhuzin. His trading post becomes the main setting of the series after he is inadvertently killed by Takeda: a guard possessed with the spirit of Scorpion.

Baron Reyland has no direct equivalent in the world of the Mortal Kombat video game series, but John Reilly did reprise his role as a vision created by Shang Tsung and Quan Chi in the memorable Conquest episode Unholy Alliance.

Mortal Kombat Online is very sad to learn of the actor's passing. Fans of Reilly's work are welcome to share their thoughts in the comments below. Special acknowledgement to user Lone_Wolf_Productions_NY for bringing this story to our attention.

Cyberpunk 2077 Pays Homage to Mortal Kombat
A tribute for good luck!

Fans who've weathered the controversial launch of Cyberpunk 2077 have been rewarded with the discovery of a surprising nod to Mortal Kombat. An in-game collectible pays direct homage to one of the series' most popular characters. Take a closer look:

The "Yellow Jacket Warrior" statue can be discovered by accepting and completing the Fly Me Away side quest initiated through Panam. You'll receive the in-game reward from a character named Mitch, who calls it a good luck charm carried by someone named "Scorpion".

Mitch hands over the good luck statue in Cyberpunk 2077. [image via @TheJohnorrhea]

The digital trinket bears more than a passing resemblance to Mortal Kombat's Scorpion. It even seems to be posed in a hybrid action-stance similar to the original Mortal Kombat 11 box art and collectible statue included with European Mortal Kombat X Kollector's Editions.

A life-size version of the authentic Scorpion statue can be found at NetherRealm Studios in Chicago. The lunging ninja received a formal unveiling for the launch of Mortal Kombat X, which quickly went on to be the best selling installment in the series. Popularity that might account for developer CD Projekt Red's easter egg tribute.

The Yellow Jacket Warrior statue pays homage to Scorpion. [image via @Xbudz]

Fans eager for a Scorpion memento in real life can look forward to McFarlane Toys' MK11 The Shadow variant this month, or seek out the original MK11 Scorpion where available

Scorpion is also on the cover of Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate -- out now for PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC! Find and discuss all the latest from the game in the Mortal Kombat 11 forum!

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