Action figures, board games, and amusement park rides have been turned into movies with varying degrees of success in recent years. Now studio execs have hit upon another, even more unexpected source of inspiration: restaurants. Or one restaurant, anyway.
Benderspink and Broken Road are teaming to make a movie based on Medieval Times, the Middle Ages-themed chain famed for its live tournaments. Because why make an original medieval adventure when you can make a medieval adventure that already comes with brand recognition and tons of built-in cross-promotion? Hit the jump for more details.
As a restaurant, Medieval Times has been around for decades. Its nine locations in the U.S. have served some 53 million customers to date. The chain is known less for its food than for its entertainment, which sees knights competing against each other in jousting, swordfighting, falconry, and other events. It’s also been referenced on the big screen a few times over the years, most memorably in The Cable Guy and Garden State. However, this would be the first film based on the restaurant itself.
Deadline reports that the two production companies have just closed the rights deal, and are now working on a package to shop to studios. How exactly they plan to turn the restaurants into a movie remains unclear, but it seems safe to bet we’re in for an action epic set, somehow, in the Middle Ages. Given the current popularity of Game of Thrones, I also wouldn’t be surprised to see some fantastical elements tossed in.
There’s no reason a Medieval Times movie can’t be good; Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean sounded absurd at first but turned out to be genuinely thrilling. On the other hand, it’s become clear that brand recognition by itself isn’t enough to sell a film. If it were, we’d be breathlessly covering pre-production on Battleship 2 right about now. Here’s hoping the folks behind Medieval Times: The Movie have learned that lesson.
Discuss: A Game of Thrones knockoff doesn’t interest me, but I would totally watch a movie set in a contemporary Medieval Times restaurant. You know those fake knights and kings have some awesomely bizarre behind-the-scenes stories to tell.