Former Marvel Studios chairman David Maisel, who is executive producer of Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America: The First Avenger, has been brought on-board to help develop the mobile game Angry Birds into a feature length film.
Maisel is currently in talks with screenwriters and directors regarding the project and Rovio, the company behind the game, hopes to follow in the steps of Pixar.
“There has been so much chatter about an ‘Angry Birds’ movie, but it’s now real,” Maisel told Variety. “The process is starting now.”
Maisel saw the opportunity in growing “Angry Birds” given the worldwide popularity of the game across a wide demographic.
“People are interacting with these characters six inches from them each time they play, and that creates an emotional connection,” Maisel said. “This is not an American thing. It’s not even a Finnish thing. It’s a global thing that’s something I’ve never seen before. It will be exciting to expand (this intellectual property) within Hollywood.”
Angry Birds has been downloaded more than 250 million times since its launch late in 2009, so promoting and marketing the film won’t be a problem given the built-in popularity and the fact Rovio can communicate with the fanbase directly on their phones. Business-wise it makes a lot of sense, but whether they follow Pixar’s method of making good films remains to be seen. They can still make money even if they churn out something like Garfield or The Chipmunks.
In the game players use a slingshot to help a flock of animated birds destroy a group of evil pigs who stole their eggs. A basic good birds vs. bad pigs premise is there, but getting a decent screenwriter could help develop the story into something more film-worthy.