MANILA, Philippines – Fantasy trading card game Magic: The Gathering (MTG) is on its way to the big screen as a large-scale film franchise, reports The Hollywood Reporter.
According to the report, production outfit 20th Century Fox has acquired screen rights to the collectible card game, with X-Men and Fantastic Four screenwriter and producer Simon Kinberg on board with production.
While further details about the production have yet to be released, Fox said they are marketing the project as a film franchise on par with worldwide blockbusters Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings.
The Magic phenomenon began in the ’90s, spreading throughout comic book shops and schools, eventually leading to organized tournaments in the US. In 1999, multinational toy brand Hasbro bought Magic developers Wizards of the Coast.
As the trading card game’s popularity grew, the tournaments extended to other parts of the globe. Today, most collectibles come with a hefty price tag, not only for their value in battle, but also for the cards’ graphic art created by specialized fantasy artists.
How the magic works
According to the MTG official website a player assumes the role of a planeswalker or a powerful wizard. Armed with spells and magical creatures in the form of a deck of playing cards, each planeswalker is in a constant battle against one another, vying for “glory, knowledge, and conquest.”
The experience relies both on luck and strategy. After acquiring random cards from the Magic booster pack, players aim to grow their collection by trading with other players. Hard-core traders will attest that the game requires skill, with money at stake in professional tournaments.
In the Philippines, the gathering of Magic card collectors remains unfamiliar to those outside the trading realm, but a Magic: The Gathering Philippines page on Facebook proves that planeswalkers are among us. The page is constantly updated with information about tournaments and gatherings happening locally.
Today, the MTG realm may be explored not just through the cards, but through digital games, ebooks, novels, and comic books as well. In addition, Spellslingers, an online show featuring the latest cards and “adrenaline-paced battles,” may be viewed on YouTube.
Here’s a quick look into the game:
‘Magic’ fans are already anticipating the new movie, and have taken to Twitter to express their excitement.
I can't believe they're turning this into a movie! http://t.co/2B6mE79wCc— Meghan Camarena (@Strawburry17) January 15, 2014
Thirteen-year-old me demands to be writing the MAGIC: THE GATHERING movie! I anticipate @laurensblum will be my competition for the job.— Chris McCoy (@thatthere) January 14, 2014
BAM! Now THIS is some Hasbro movie news to be excited about! MAGIC THE GATHERING! http://t.co/FmtI2oLWZl— mktoon (@mktoon) January 13, 2014
Awesome now that Magic: The gathering is becoming a film finally my scripts Old Maid and Snap! can start being shopped around.— ryan morrissey-smith (@TigersMS78) January 14, 2014
Given the game’s loyal following, intense speculation is to be expected, from concept to casting news. Expectations for the movie adaptation of the beloved game are bound to be high, and the fan base continues to grow.
@morganshaw Oh my god MAGIC the GATHERING is my LORD and SAVIOR. It’s still COOL right? Did you NOTICE that I LOVE it?— Jake (@thejakeshenry) May 13, 2013
Dang it, Magic the Gathering..I didn't want to spend more money on you. But the new stuff looks so amazing. #HobbyistProblems @wizards_magic— Timothy Martuch (@tubatimo) January 13, 2014
Nooowww I see what all the fuss was about! I'm officially hooked on Magic: The Gathering. I play my newest nerd card for +7/+7 awesomeness!— Gus Ronald (@goosemangus) January 8, 2014
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