Donkey Kong, Pac-Man, Frogger and more will make an appearance in the upcoming film Pixels, thanks to recent partnerships with several game companies, Sony Pictures Entertainment announced today.
Pixels stars Adam Sandler, Michelle Monaghan and Peter Dinklage's mullet in a movie inspired by the short film of the same name. After aliens mistake footage of classic arcade titles for a threat from Earth, Sandler and friends must team up to protect the planet from their game-inspired assault. The list of partners and their relevant properties is as follows:
- Atari Interactive (Asteroids, Breakout, Centipede and Missile Command)
- Konami Digital Entertainment Co., Ltd. (Frogger)
- Bandai Namco Games Inc. (Pac-Man, Galaga and Dig Dug)
- Nintendo (Donkey Kong)
- Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. (Q*bert)
- Taito Corporation (Space Invaders)
- Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment (Joust, Defender, Robotron and Wizard of Wor)
According to director Chris Columbus, there would have been "no way" to make the movie without the classic game characters.
"They are as important to the film as the roles that Adam [Sandler], Kevin [James], Michelle [Monaghan], Peter [Dinklage], Josh [Gad] and Brian [Cox] are playing," Columbus said. "It was a real thrill to see everything come together exactly as we envisioned it, and we're grateful to have all of these fantastic companies on board."
Previously, the drector said classic characters will be "fully realized, three-dimensional, pixelated characters that are quite threatening."
The original short, created by Patrick Jean, featured cameos from characters such as Donkey Kong, Frogger and squadrons of Space Invaders. Because of this, producer Allen Covert said, it was "critical" to use them in the movie.
"We approached them with a deep love for their characters and a respect for the elements that make them unique and iconic, and we've worked with the companies to incorporate those elements into the film," Covert said.
For more on how Pixels went from a short to a full-fledged movie, check out our interview with Jean and screenwriter Timothy Dowling. Pixels hits theaters May 15, 2015.