Warner Premiere has today issued an official press release to announce their upcoming ten episode, live-action digital series based on Mortal Kombat. A formality to confirm what was already widely reported January 15th; the release reiterates Kevin Tancharoen's role as director of the shorts, with filming set to start in Vancouver this February.
In reference to Tancharoen's work on the well known Mortal Kombat: Rebirth viral video [full story], the press release makes deliberate note of it's status as an "unofficial fan short." The ten episodes are also described as revealing unseen history regarding the characters fans "know and love", suggesting the digital series may have much closer ties to the video game canon than the urbanized versions seen in Rebirth.
No casting was revealed in the press release, but Michael Jai White has already made it known he will return to reprise his Rebirth role as Jax, appearing alongside confirmed characters; Scorpion, Johnny Cage, and Liu Kang.
Update Jan. 25: When asked if she would appear in the new project, actress Jeri Ryan, who appeared in Rebirth, confirmed via Twitter that she has been offered the role of Sonya and is in negotiations. Ian Anthony Dale offered similar confirmation on the 15th, regarding his return as Scorpion.
Update Feb. 6: Jeri Ryan has confirmed via Twitter that she has accepted the role of Sonya Blade. She will leave for Vancouver tomorrow, where the series is set to be filmed. Ryan notes her enthusiasm for her chapter, "BTW, just finished reading the whole script for Mortal Kombat. Holy crap... I think u might just love it. Get ready..."
If the digital shorts do indeed elaborate on the history of the icons of the franchise, they will be part of a noted effort to explore the characters and their stories, adding to animated vignettes that have already been released to reveal more about Scorpion, Sub-Zero, and Mileena in the lead-up to the game.
Warner Premiere today announced development of a live-action digital series based on the best-selling Mortal Kombat videogame franchise. Directed by Kevin Tancharoen, known for his popular unofficial fan short Mortal Kombat: Rebirth which garnered over 10 million views online, and in conjunction with the upcoming Mortal Kombat videogame, this action-packed, digital series will take gamers deep into the history of warriors they know and love such as Scorpion, Johnny Cage and Liu Kang. Shooting for the digital series will take place in Vancouver starting in early February.
Mortal Kombat is one of the most celebrated videogame franchises of all time. Since its debut in 1992, it has spawned four arcade games, 10 console-based videogame titles, two movies (Mortal Kombat and Mortal Kombat: Annihilation), two televisions series (Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm and Mortal Kombat: Conquest) and an animated prequel Mortal Kombat: The Journey Begins. Additionally, a new Mortal Kombat game will be coming out April 19, 2011 on the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft.
Available this spring through online digital retailers from Warner Bros. Digital Distribution, the Mortal Kombat digital series is an anthology of multiple live action shorts, each providing never-before-revealed insights into characters featured in the upcoming videogame as well as the game’s universe. Additional details, including casting, will be announced in the coming weeks.
The ten episode "digital series" will be made available this Spring, likely through avenues such as iTunes and Amazon. You can already find MK releases through these services: the first of WaterTower Music's Mortal Kombat: Songs Inspired by the Warriors collaborations with Teenage Riot Records has been made available as a pre-release [iTunes/Amazon].
Mortal Kombat, the new video game for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, will be released April 19 in standard and special editions. Mortal Kombat Online will report on confirmed details for international versions as information is made available.