Welcome to the New Shacknews

You're currently viewing the beginning of a full site renovation for Shacknews.com. You might find something working oddly. If you do, let us know! More exciting new features to follow.

Zelda live-action series reportedly in development at Netflix

Streaming giant said to be working closely with Nintendo to bring the classic adventure series to live, in the midst of the popularity of sword and sorcery shows like Game of Thrones.

27

Netflix has been building its stable of original series, documentaries, and movies, and may just be moving into a video game adaptation.

The Wall-Street Journal reports that the company is working closely with Nintendo to produce a live-action series based on The Legend of Zelda. Described as the swords and sorcery style of Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings, but with a more family-friendly tone, itwould follow the adventures of an ordinary boy named Link who must rescue Princess Zelda to save Hyrule. As you might expect.

The series is currently seeking a writer, and it's entirely possible that either company could walk away from the project before it gets off the ground. As the report notes, Nintendo has been historically protective of its properties, especially after the disastrous live-action adaptation of Super Mario Bros.

Editor-In-Chief

From The Chatty

  • reply
    February 6, 2015 1:28 PM

    Steve Watts posted a new article, Zelda live-action series reportedly in development at Netflix

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:30 PM

      wher der fuh?

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:35 PM

      Yes. All of the yes.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:42 PM

      FULLY TUMESCENT

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:45 PM

      This is just one of those things that I feel deep down they're going to completely fuck up, yet I love Zelda so much that somehow beyond all logic, I'm interested to see how this goes. Maybe they'll somehow do it right? I guess, on the plus side, it's Netflix. So far they're trying to put out quality shows. If this was ABC or NBC or some shit, I'd be terrified.

      Still, an adult-themed Metroid directly in the same vein as a Ridley Scott Alien/Prometheus movie would have been money. That's the only Nintendo franchise I can legitimately see as a live-action movie/show. Mario would be great as a Pixar/Lego-movie type of animated movie. Well, until he speaks.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:45 PM

      Bets on who will be cast as Link?

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 1:51 PM

        I'll take: a relative unknown. I would expect the villain to be a more high-profile actor. Perhaps Zelda too.

        • reply
          February 6, 2015 1:55 PM

          zelda williams

        • reply
          February 6, 2015 1:59 PM

          I would also cast an unknown.

          I will kick a goose right in the beak if it ends up being Jake Gyllenhaal.

        • reply
          February 6, 2015 2:18 PM

          I don't know if this was purposeful or not, but that actually fits the characters themselves: Link is some noname kid who becomes a somebody whereas Zelda and Ganondorf are both legend in the game world.

          Just thought that was neat

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 1:52 PM

        Justin Bieber

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 1:53 PM

        Shia LaBeouf

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 2:03 PM

        the kid who plays bran stark?

        I imagine they'll put in a kid

        have him grow up to be an adult like ocarina of time

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 2:44 PM

        Neil Patrick Harris - Suit up

        • reply
          February 6, 2015 6:25 PM

          I just imagined him saying that and then stomping off in the iron boots.

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 10:07 PM

        Lindsey Sterling

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 11:50 PM

        Danny Trejo

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:53 PM

      I look forward to the pot episode.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:53 PM

      excuuuuuuuse me princess

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 1:54 PM

      Lol there are currently 3 threads about this. Bumping this one so they're all near the top.

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 1:59 PM

        This should be the *official* topic thread since it's tied into our story. ;)

        • reply
          February 6, 2015 6:16 PM

          Well, you guys should make it possible for mods to fold previous threads into the official one.

          • reply
            February 6, 2015 7:12 PM

            I think that's one of the things our web team has been working on for several months now. I'm not sure where they are in their development process, but I know it's something we all have been wanting for quite some time.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 2:01 PM

      Barf barf barf

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 2:03 PM

      I hope I get to play Ganon

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 2:03 PM

      Brilliant idea. Nothing says "TV magic" like attaching a voice to a silent video game protagonist.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 2:11 PM

      So I talked about this a little on Twitter, but I'll open the floor here too. Which game should serve as the basis for it? Obviously they're going to need to exercise some creative license no matter what, but it'll probably bear a passing resemblance to one of the games.

      I tend to think Ocarina. Even if I don't think the gameplay has aged all that well, the story is the simplest entry point and establishes some important parts of Zelda lore that are more commonplace now. Namely, the Triforce being split into three parts that represent each of the three main characters. Plus, Zelda gets to actually do something, and any modern series can't literally just have a damsel in distress waiting to be rescued the whole time. Giving her some agency as Sheik just makes sense.

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 2:26 PM

        I'll go into this more next week, but I think there should be no basis for this. Give this Link a clean slate, just as every Zelda game (minus a few exceptions like Majora's Mask and Zelda II) go in with a fresh Link.

        • reply
          February 6, 2015 2:33 PM

          I agree on this. I don't think Ocarina would work since Time Travel is never simple and just over complicates things. They can certainly take the base world, and characters and go from there.

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 2:26 PM

        Super Smash Brothers Melee

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 2:52 PM

        If they choose a game.... I suspect either LTTP or Twilight Princess. I liked Twilight Princess best because it had the strongest narrative structure of all the Zelda games that I have played and I think that would translate best into a tv series.

        Majora's Mask might be really interesting to pull off as a tv show, each episode is Link going back to the start with a new take on the same day's events.

        Honestly, they're probably just going to generate a story off the base common lore of all the Zelda games. Evil sorcerer -> princess in peril -> (very) young woodsman starts adventure -> questing with far too much backtracking.

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 2:56 PM

        Obviously the CD-i games

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 6:25 PM

        Ocarina of time, because if you want ganondorf to be a useful character from a writers perspective you need him before he becomes super powerful. Also there is that whole thing about how he betrays the king of hyrule.

        Really though I suspected they'll steal ideas from every game and make stuff up too, but Ocarina will be the closest one.

        • reply
          February 6, 2015 6:26 PM

          Also Time travel would be a new twist for a fantasy series.

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 11:49 PM

        Zelda 2

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 2:22 PM

      I will be very surprised if this isn't terrible.

      • reply
        February 6, 2015 2:35 PM

        I think it's going to be great. Nintendo learned their lesson with franchising properties back in the 90s, they won't let them release it if it's awful

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 2:41 PM

      if that pasty red hed girl gets anywhere near it it will be garbage. you know she is applying right now to be a writer on it

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 2:54 PM

      ??????

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 4:42 PM

      Kill it now!!!

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 4:46 PM

      I would be much less cynical if this were going to be mini series instead

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 5:14 PM

      GREAT! I CAN'T WAIT TO BOMB SOME DODONGOS

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 5:16 PM

      G[Green Arrow]g of Thrones.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 6:27 PM

      3 words Live Action Tingle

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 6:28 PM

      This sounds like a terrible, terrible idea.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 7:17 PM

      Them trying to sell it as a Family friendly game of thrones makes me think they should just do a live action pikmin instead.

    • reply
      February 6, 2015 9:11 PM

      Who will play the fairy constantly pestering link?

    • reply
      February 7, 2015 2:53 AM

      Currently seeking a writer? Unless they've got someone excellent championing this every step of the way, this will either fall apart during discussions with Nintendo, or it'll be trash.

      Lets see if we hear anything more from it in 3 years time.

    • reply
      February 7, 2015 6:48 AM

      I love Zelda, so I've thought about this announcement way more than is warranted. A live-action Zelda has enormous potential. Netflix apparently wants to create "Game of Thrones for all ages." If they pull it off, I am in. The trouble is that there are certain tropes to which a Zelda TV show must adhere, that do not necessarily lend themselves to television.

      First and foremost, Link can't talk. He just can't. I don't care whether they make him stuffy and formal like Legolas from Lord of the Rings, or tilt more toward the surfer-dude interpretation of the character used in the Zelda cartoon series. Whatever Netflix does will be wrong. Link can't talk--not because he's a mute, but because he's the embodiment of courage.

      That's the whole idea. Link does not argue, debate, whine, or express fear with his words. He takes a deep breath, hefts the Master Sword, and plunges head-first into danger. Viewers need to see Link muster his courage and strength without saying a word, because everyone around him is all talk. Every other denizen of Hyrule hems and haws, making excuses why they can't cave the princess or, as is often the case, why they cannot change a bad situation in their own small, meaningless lives. They need Link to do it for them.

      Everyone doubts Link, and Link proves them wrong by taking action instead of wasting time with words. This problem shouldn't pose too great an obstacle. Give him a sidekick (probably a fairy) to do his talking for him. Explain his silence by making him a mute. Or sit on the fact that he can talk, but only in single words, and rarely. Wouldn't it be thrilling to tune into the finale of season one only for Link to calmly and softly say "No" in response to a plan likely to get Zelda killed?

      Second: Link's age. Casting a kid as Link (anyone younger than, say, 17) would be a bad idea. I support Netflix's intention to create "Game of Thrones of all ages," but a significant demographic of "all ages" will not tune if the main character is a stupid little kid who runs around in a green skirt with no pants. Also, most child actors are terrible and should be cryogenically frozen until they reach adulthood if they show the slightest glimmer of promise.

      Third: Zelda. In this day and age, a damsel-in-distress story does not resonate with "all ages." "All ages" must extend to "both genders," and women do not want to see a strapping young lad with a sword storm a tower to rescue a helpless maiden. It just doesn't play. The one thing little-kid me loved about the Zelda cartoon (which was almost completely terrible) was that Zelda played an active role. The princess didn't wear frilly dresses. She wore knee-high boots, had an attitude, and fought beside Link on the front lines against Ganon and his minions. Sure, she got captured a time or twenty, but primarily because she was an important figure instrumental to Ganon's plans.

      The Zelda character needs to channel the spunk of her cartoon counterpart--but maybe not at first. I wouldn't be against a Zelda who, like the princess in Ocarina of Time, was determined to save the world, but couldn't because he father kept her nestled deep in the heart of Hyrule Castle's tall, impenetrable walls. Maybe she starts out helpless and afraid, yet determined. Through her growing friendship with Link, she learns how to take care of herself and matures into one of the greatest heroes in Hyrule lore.

      Hyrule legend, I mean.

      I guess I'm on board with this. I'm hopeful. I've got my fingers crossed. Zelda is such a rich world. There is so much fun lore to explore, especially if Netflix opted to create a mishmash Hyrule from pieces of the more popular Zelda games. I just hope they don't screw it up.

      • reply
        February 7, 2015 6:58 AM

        Also, I'm not under the illusion that Link won't talk. I just know whatever he says, however he says it, will fall flat because it won't live up to the Link we've imagined in our heads for nearly 30 years.