Will The Popularity Of 'Pokemon Go' Fast Track A Live-Action 'Pokemon' Movie?

It's been just over a week since Pokemon Go debuted on mobile devices and the game has taken the world by storm (at least in the territories in which it's been made available so far). Pokemon has always been a popular Nintendo property, but the popularity of this game is something fascinating and wonderful. People are leaving their houses at all hours of the day, walking around their neighborhoods and cities, meeting strangers, just so they can find Pokemon. Sure, some have used it for evil, but overall, this new game is paving the way for a new kind of gaming that incorporates the real world like no other game has done before.

So with the popularity of Pokemon Go being off the charts, is there a chance we might see a live-action Pokemon movie get off the ground sooner than later?

You may remember a few months ago that Pokemon was at the center of a bidding war in Hollywood. The rights were being battled over like a Pokemon Gym by Warner Bros. Pictures (who distributed Pokemon: The First Movie all the way back in 1999), Sony Pictures, and Legendary Pictures, with the latter emerging as the frontrunner.

However, since that story emerged, we never heard if the rights to Pokemon ended up in a studio's hands or not. But this week, Deadline revealed that Legendary is indeed nearing a deal to the rights for Pokemon to be turned into a live-action movie.

At first, it might seem ill-advised to have a motion picture studio owned by a Chinese media company adapting a Japanese property since relations between China and Japan are always tense. But Legendary is coming off massive success with Warcraft, the most successful video game movie of all time, so Nintendo probably doesn't have anything to worry about in that regard.

Fans have been clamoring for a live-action Pokemon movie for a long time, and it sounds like Pokemon Go just might be the key to finally getting off the ground. After all, just over a week into the game's release in the world, some tech savvy players appear to have discovered a partnership with McDonald's on the horizon with even more sponsored locations coming to the game in the future. So it would only make sense for Nintendo to take advantage of all possible exploitation of Pokemon at this point and strike while the iron is hot.

As someone who previously had no interest in Pokemon whatsoever, never being curious enough to play the game or read the cards, the constant social media buzz about Pokemon Go inspired me to check it out, and I've been playing like crazy for a few days now. There are plenty other people I've talked to in the same boat, so this could be huge for Pokemon as a brand, and that means more box office dollars for Legendary Pictures as well. Stay tuned to see what happens with a Pokemon movie as time goes on.