A 'Complete' Tomb Raider Reboot Is In The Works As MGM Loses Movie Rights

The rights to "Tomb Raider" are up in the air, and a Hollywood bidding war has erupted regarding who will become the new cinematic home for all things Lara Croft. MGM, the previous company to obtain the rights to the popular video game, had until May of 2022 to greenlight a sequel to their 2018 "Tomb Raider" film, but failed to do so, meaning the rights are back on the market.

The news was broken in an exclusive report from The Wrap, who received word that a bevy of Hollywood players are vying for the chance to make a "Tomb Raider" film of their own. Unfortunately, this also means that Alicia Vikander, who starred in the titular role of the 2018 film, is no longer attached to any upcoming "Tomb Raider" films. Whoever nabs the rights will be creating yet another complete reboot of the story, with an entirely new creative team.

It's a shame, because Vikander has been open and honest about her desire to return to the character, saying in an interview, "I think Misha and I have been ready, so it's kind of in somebody else's hands, to be honest." She was referring to Misha Green, "Lovecraft Country" creator, who had originally signed on to write and direct the sequel back in 2021. This latest report from The Wrap, however, says that "there are no casting or director commitments." This doesn't mean that it's impossible for Vikander to return, but it seems highly unlikely that we'll get another round with her as Lara Croft.

Third time's the charm?

The rights holder is currently producer Graham King and his GK Films banner, who acquired the "Tomb Raider" rights in 2011 from game publisher Square Enix. King and GK Films will be the decision makers on what happens next with "Tomb Raider." It's a shame, because Misha Green had already put a lot of work into the sequel she called "Tomb Raider: Obsidian," which was supposed to head into production before the pandemic caused a delay. While the 2018 "Tomb Raider" film wasn't a huge hit with critics or the fans, it still managed to pull in a decent box office haul.

The "Tomb Raider" video games were first brought to the screen in 2001 with Angelina Jolie starring in the titular role of "Lara Croft: Tomb Raider", and again in the 2003 sequel "Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life." Twenty different "Tomb Raider" video games have been made since the original game's launch in 1996, giving whichever studio wins the bidding war plenty of material to mine through for their new reboot. 

For what it's worth, my money is on Warner Bros. who distributed the 2018 film, but this is entirely personal speculation.