It doesn't even seem real, but it has been two years since the world was introduced to big-budget Hollywood Sonic the Hedgehog. As one of the last wide movie releases before the COVID-19 pandemic, Sega's blue hedgehog was a certified star in 2020. Now that the anticipated sequel is upon us, we wondered if other Sega properties would be good candidates to be expanded into a cinematic universe. The question was posed to our staff, who wasted no time in turning their video game dreams into some sort of fancy, intertwined universe.
Question: Which Sega property would you like to see expanded into a cinematic universe?
Panzer Dragoon - Donovan Erskine, Dragon-tamer
Panzer Dragoon is one of those gaming franchises that would lend itself pretty well to film, so long as the filmmakers took plenty of creative liberties. The universe itself is fascinating and really fleshed out, but there’s an opportunity to introduce some brand new characters - both human and dragon - within it. Besides, we haven’t had a good “dragon” movie series since the How to Train Your Dragon flicks, I’d say we’re due for a proper successor.
Jet Set Radio - Sam Chandler, Fly like a butterfly
Sign me up for more Jet Set Radio. Whether it’s more games or other forms of media, I am on board to see the GGs take back the streets of Tokyo-to one graffiti design at a time. With a wealth of wild characters and antagonists, there is plenty of opportunity for backstories on each one, making it perfect for a cinematic universe. Plus, Tokyo-to is a fantastic setting.
Sega Bass/Marine Fishing - Chris Jarrard, ‘You caught a crab. Oh Yeah!’
If I had control of the Sega pocketbook, I would attempt to make some deals with Hollywood to turn the beloved Sega Arcade Fishing games into an extended universe. I want a reality show where the charter captain and voiceover guy from Sega Marine Fishing have to run all sorts of other businesses that they aren’t qualified for, such as funeral direction, controlled demolition, or prenatal care.
There could be a Sega Bass Fishing movie that is 3D but also allows cinemagoers to cast lures from their seats with virtual tackle and equipment. We could cast Rami Malek and the second Spider-Man to be fish and Alec Baldwin could be the boat.
Afterburner - Bill Lavoy, Not Maverick
You know, I have fond memories of the Afterburner franchise, and I’d be more than happy to watch it make the jump to the cinematic universe. A Netflix series that centered around fighter pilots, jets, and all the drama of Top Gun? Yeah, I’d check that out, but I’m thinking there are probably a dozen (or more) Sega properties that would make the cinematic jump long before you’d see any Afterburner on your favorite streaming platform.
Streets of Rage - TJ Denzer, Big on Cinematic Punchies
There’s a lot of really fun Sega IP that could make for a great cinematic universe, but at this point, I think the one I would enjoy the most is Streets of Rage, AKA Bare Knuckle. Sega spent three games building up the lore of the urban fight between Axel Stone, Blaze Fielding, their friends, and the evil Mr. X. Dotemu went further in continuing to build upon that legacy with Streets of Rage 4 and its DLC. These games are some of my favorite beat-’em-ups in the history of the genre, but I could certainly go for a Streets of Rage experience where I could sit back and watch them do all the punchies without me feverishly having to mash some buttons. After all, I can certainly get down on a quality martial arts flick or TV series. If we're all being honest here, I would also love to see a Hollywood A-lister such as Jennifer Lawrence or Sir Anthony Hopkins be forced to eat a whole turkey out of a trashcan in 4K DolbyVision.
Virtua Fighter - Dennis White, Social Media Wrangler
There are some great SEGA franchises that would make fantastic movies (Space Channel 5 with the right creative direction would be an amazing musical I would totally be down for), but when getting expansive enough for a cinematic universe, you need characters with enough depth to carry individual films. I think the world of Virtua Fighter has enough options to make something really special.
I’d love to see some globe-trotting adventures. Pai trying to prove she is a kung-fu master worthy of her father’s reputation who also happens to be dying from a fatal illness and wants to make a final stand is some powerful drama. Sarah Bryant or Vanessa leading a Black Widow-style action movie would be pretty cool. And of course, I can’t forget about Jeffry McWild, the Australian fisherman who enters the tournament to win enough cash for an epic boat so he can take on his dreaded rival, the Satan Shark. Yes, an epic sea thriller is exactly what Hollywood needs! Let’s get Virtua Fighter 6 out the door so we can get around to bringing this franchise to life!
Bayonetta - Morgan Shaver, Umbra Witch
Bayonetta from developer PlatinumGames and publisher Sega is one that might be hard to properly adapt in a cinematic sense, especially in terms of whether it’d involve live-action casting as it’d be damn near impossible to cast an actress capable of embodying the role of Bayonetta.
However, the series is so ripe with content that it'd be a real shame to not explore the idea of an expanded Bayonetta cinematic universe with two games worth of content to go on, and a third game set to release in the (hopefully) near future. That said, it’s worth noting there was an anime adaptation of Bayonetta in 2013 from studio Gonzo called Bayonetta: Bloody Fate which wasn’t bad by any means, though it wasn’t exactly a grand slam either.
It’s also been almost a decade since Bloody Fate was released. Now, you have the events of Bayonetta 2 to factor in, which was released after 2013’s Bloody Fate in 2014, along with the upcoming release of Bayonetta 3. With this, I think it’d be more than worthwhile for PlatinumGames and Sega to revisit the idea of adapting Bayonetta and giving her the sort of cinematic universe she deserves.
And with that out of the way, I now have the urge to go back and replay Bayonetta and Bayonetta 2 for the millionth time.
The House of the Dead - Steve Tyminski, Stevetendo show host & zombie hunter!
With the success of the Sonic the Hedgehog movie, it gets you thinking about what other Sega properties could be made into a movie and have a cinematic universe attached? Usually, my go-to answer for Sega-related stuff is Sonic but Sonic set the bar pretty high so I’m going with another one of my favorite Sega properties, The House of the Dead. I know there have been House of the Dead movies before but I don’t think they really had anything to do with the games. That being said, you could have the various games be different points in the timeline for the cinematic universe. The House of the Dead 2 is my favorite game in the series and you could have so many of the different characters, complete with their “interesting” dialogue and voices. You could have a new generation of agents run into the old-school ones from the games. If I had to pick a Sega game to push into a cinematic universe, give me the House of the Dead franchise.
Golden Axe - Blake Morse, Co-EIC
Fantasy properties are always a hot commodity, and thanks to Game of Thrones we’re seeing a lot more of them get a shot as TV series or film franchises. That makes the Golden Axe series ripe for the picking, you’ve already got a solid Conan The Barbarian-style cast with the original trio of heroes and even more options when it comes to the arcade sequel. It’s got everything you’d want including, impish thieves, skeleton warriors, berserkers, and some of the craziest mounts that the world of video games has ever seen. And then there’s Death Adder, what a great name for a villain! He’s also pretty huge and ominous when you finally get to that final battle. The settings themselves are pretty whimsical and include an epic battle while flying on a giant eagle; that’s just begging to be turned into a fight scene with a ton of shaky-cam shots and hard cuts!
There you have it, folks. Our staff is hungry for more Virtua Fighter, Bayonetta, and, apparently, fish. What Sega properties would you like to see expanded into a cinematic universe? Would you subscribe to Netflix for a Seaman cooking competition or an OutRun movie directed by Tyler Perry? Let us know in the comments below and have a solid holiday weekend.
Shack Staff posted a new article, Shack Chat: Which Sega property would you like to see expanded into a cinematic universe?
The safer bet is Out Run, but a campy Altered Beast, please.
rise from your grave
welcome to your doom!
Shenmue. Already got the anime so that’s a good start.
PHANTASY STAR, BITCHES!
The guy who shouted "SEGA!"
Golden Axe, starring Peter Dinklage as Gilius
Streets of Rage, in a gritty grindhouse B-movie style from the early 80s.
Uh Yakuza is already a cinematic universe.
Hyokkori Hyoutanjima: Hyoutanjima no Daikoukai