Sony is making a fresh foray into film and television with its new PlayStation Productions studio. As the name likely implies, this studio will create new film and television programming based around Sony and PlayStation's wide range of video game properties.
Spearheaded by Asad Qizilbash as well as Sony Interactive Entertainment chairman Shawn Layden, PlayStation Productions has already been launched. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the new studio is based out of the Sony Pictures lot in Culver City, allowing the company to adapt its more than 100 original properties to a new medium in any way it sees fit.
Considering how big television and film are these days, and particularly considering the success of the extended Marvel Cinematic Universe, the folks at Sony apparently saw a unique opportunity to leverage its IP into new properties. Qizilbash says the company was even able to speak with Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, to get a better understanding of the industry's current climate.
"For the last year and half, two years, we’ve spent time trying to understand the industry, talking to writers, directors, producers," Qizilbash said. "We talked to Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Kevin Feige to really get an understanding of the industry."
Given how much money Marvel has been raking in, we're not surprised to see Sony looking into similar plans. Of course, Marvel has a huge catalog of IP to draw from as well as a long-established fanbase of dedicated readers. As it so happens, the same is largely true for Sony and its 20+ years of original PlayStation IP. Following Marvel's footsteps won't be easy, but the payoff could be tremendous.
"We looked at what Marvel has done in taking the world of comic books and making it into the biggest thing in the film world," Layden said. "It would be a lofty goal to say we’re following in their footsteps, but certainly we’re taking inspiration from that."
It seems that Qizilbash and Layden really want to make PlayStation Productions work, and that of course means there will be an uphill battle. Films based on video games just aren't good, by and large, and though many go on to be commercially successful, nearly all of them are panned by critics in some form or another. The real challenge is making video game movies and TV that live up to the properties, but considering Sony's breadth of experience in the industry — to say nothing of its top-to-bottom ownership of first-party IPs — the company has all the right ingredients for success. As for where the new studio starts first, only time will tell.
Kevin Tucker posted a new article, Sony launches PlayStation Productions film and TV studio