Last year, Ubisoft, the French videogame developer behind the crazy-successful game series, was in negotiations with Sony Pictures to create an Assassin's Creed film franchise, but those talks never panned out. Instead, Ubisoft Motion Pictures is looking to maintain a certain degree of creative control by developing the film independently. That means Ubisoft will put together a team of star, director, and screenwriter that can then be shopped about to potential distributors. So Sony might very well end up distributing an eventual Assassin's Creed movie.
The games, which have sold over 30 million copies since 2007, follow Desmond Miles, a contemporary bartender who abdicated his responsibility as the last in a line of trained assassins. After being kidnapped by a corporation with ties to the Knights Templar, Miles eventually starts using a sort of time machine to go back in time, experiencing ancestral memories and collecting "Pieces of Eden" in different ears. The first game took place during the Crusades, the second in the Renaissance, and this October's sequel is set during the American Revolution.
Michael Fassbender is a known quantity, having turned in tremendous performances in small dramas like Shame and Hunger for Steve McQueen, as well as blockbusters like X-Men: First Class and Prometheus. While he was a standout in the latter two mega-movies, he was part of ensemble casts both times, and it looks like Fassbender might be looking for a signature action franchise in which he is the lead. According to Variety, Fassbender is attached to star and produce through his DMC Film with Conor McCaughan.
"Michael Fassbender was our first choice," Ubisoft Motion Pictures CEO Jean-Julien Baronnet commented. "Michael (Fassbender) is an extremely smart, talented, versatile and committed actor."
Fassbender is currently playing the lead role in The Counselor, a violent tale of the drug trade in the American Southwest written by Cormac McCarthy. That film reteams the actor with his Prometheus director Ridley Scott. He's also appearing alongside Brad Pitt and Michael Kenneth Williams in Shame director McQueen's next movie, Twelve Years a Slave. Early next year, the X-Men: First Class sequel is scheduled to start production under the direction of Matthew Vaughn, and Fassbender will be reprising his role as the younger, angrier Magneto.
We don't yet know just how Assassin's Creed will adapt its videogame source material, nor really anything else about the movie, so stay tuned for more.