The path back to cinemas has been long and hard for the once lucrative Mortal Kombat. A theatrical return has long been discussed, but struggles to exit development hell have waned amidst experimental webseries, and changes in culture.
The movie may have received its best backing to date, with The Tracking Board reporting Saw and Insidious director James Wan will join the film as Producer.
Wan is in hot demand of late, working his way from low budget horror to the pinnacle of Hollywood action blockbusters with this year's Furious 7. He's already attached to direct Warner Brother's 2018 superhero franchise builder: Aquaman, with Jason Momoa in the title role. Past Producer credits include the first five Saw sequels.
The Tracking Board cites Oren Uziel (MK: Legacy) and Dave Callaham (Doom) as script writers. The plot remains tangentially related to the fiction of the hugely successful video game series, centering around a "seemingly harmless guy" who discovers his hidden powers, and uses them to enter the tournament. The film has reportedly been described by the studio as "a departure from the mythology" featuring "darker, brutally real martial arts."
Deviations from the games fit previous plot reports, and the work seen in live-action webseries Mortal Kombat: Legacy. Web director Kevin Tancharoen was previously involved in taking his vision to the big screen, but exited the project in October, 2013 [full story].
Mortal Kombat is underway with New Line Cinema and Broken Road Productions (Paul Blart: Mall Cop, Knight and Day). This month marks the 20th anniversary of the first New Line distributed Mortal Kombat movie.
[Related Article: From Sprite to Screen: Mortal Kombat versus the Movies]