Sony Declares Uncharted A 'New Hit Movie Franchise'

Having one film franchise led by Tom Holland just wasn't enough, so Sony is throwing a couple more chips in with their young star. Hot on the heels of a successful box office weekend, Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group chairman and CEO Tom Rothman sent out a company-wide email declaring "Uncharted" a "new hit movie franchise for the company." The film debuted to a surprising $51 million at the domestic box office, over the Friday to Monday stretch, with its worldwide earnings landing around $139 million worldwide. Rothman celebrated the success with the following comments:

"With over $100M in box office worldwide in just one weekend, and a 90% positive audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, Uncharted is a new hit movie franchise for the company. This marks a great victory for every single division of the company, as the film was our first major production entirely shut down by the advent of Covid, yet we persevered to complete a picture the audience loves and marketed and distributed it with strategic verve worldwide, despite the pandemic."

This marks the continuation of a successful stretch for the company, following "Venom: Let There Be Carnage" and the absolute juggernaut that continues to be "Spider-Man: No Way Home." The President's Day weekend continued the web swingers' success as the superhero flick ranked third in its 10th weekend of release, making $7.65M and bringing its gross earnings to $772 million. Tom Holland may very well be a good luck totem for the studio, so it's no wonder they're gearing up for yet another franchise led by his face.

The next chapter of the Nathan Drake story

The "Uncharted" game series tells the story of treasure hunter Nathan Drake, supposed descendant of Sir Francis Drake, who alongside his mentor Victor Sullivan, sets off on various adventures hunting for everything from lost pirate treasure to the city of El Dorado. The film acts as an origin story for the characters and no spoilers, but the film's ending certainly leaves the possibility for a sequel wide open. This wasn't really a surprise — given it's based on a game franchise with four entries in the Nathan Drake story and even a spin-off following other explorers — but with the film's box office success and Rothman's recent statements, the sequel seems inevitable.

When we first meet Holland's Nathan Drake, he's a street-smart, petty thief working as a bartender. The infamous partnership is initiated by Sully (Mark Wahlberg) who recruits Nathan to help him recover the long-lost fortune amassed by Ferdinand Magellan and lost 500 years ago by the House of Moncada. The simple heist job becomes a globetrotting race to reach the price before the ruthless Santiago Moncada (Antonio Banderas), vicious mercenary Jo Braddock (Tati Gabrielle), and fellow fortune hunter Chloe Frazer (Sophia Ali). The film also sees Nathan looking into the mystery of his long-lost brother, Sam (Rudy Pankow).

Story-wise, the film is more of a reboot than a direct prequel to the games, but it leaves room for many of the original story elements to be incorporated later down the line. A second film could directly follow up on the events of the first and, based on the signature Sully mustache that Wahlberg sports by the end of the film, jump right into the events of the first game, "Uncharted: Drake's Fortune."