High Tech

Amazon-owned MGM lost the movie rights to Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider’s movie rights are up for grabs. According to a report from TheWrap, the Amazon-owned MGM waited too long to create a sequel to its 2018 Tomb Raider film, freeing up the rights for the next Hollywood studio that wants to take a stab at creating an adaption of the long-running video game franchise.

Several studios are currently engaged in a bidding war to snap up the Tomb Raider rights, TheWrap reports. And since the license come with no obligation to retain the same cast and crew, the next Tomb Raider film could be a total reboot that passes the Lara Croft baton to yet another actress.

The 2018 Tomb Raider stars Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft, and was met with mixed reviews that criticized its weak portrayal of the series’ titular archaeologist. As we noted in our review at the time, MGM’s Tomb Raider seems to blend elements from the 2013 game with the early 2000s Tomb Raider film adaptions starring Angelina Jolie (which also didn’t get the best of reviews).

MGM originally planned to release a sequel to its film in 2021, but the COVID-19 pandemic likely got in the way of production. In 2020, the film’s director, Ben Wheaton, told The Verge’s sister site Polygon that he’s still committed to making the film, but it’s “in the mists of COVID.” It’s possible that Amazon’s acquisition of MGM in March also had something to do with the studio’s decision not to greenlight another Tomb Raider.

On the small screen, Netflix is still working on an animated Tomb Raider adaptation. The series, which still doesn’t have an official release date, will take place following the game’s trilogy reboot that concluded with Shadow of the Tomb Raider.

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