In surprising news that’s bound to shock everyone, it turns out there’s a market for well-made Pokemon films starring beloved Canadian-American actors. Detective Pikachu is now officially the highest grossing video game movie of all time.
The Ryan Reynolds-starring live action/CG hybrid has taken the top spot from the really very not good Warcraft, which released in 2016 and went on to gross an impressive $433 million worldwide. Detective Pikachu had previously fallen short of first place by around $4.5 million, but Amazon’s Box Office Mojo now reports that a succesful weekend has pushed the movie’s total earnings to $436 million worldwide.
While it’s a great achievement for everyone involved, it’s not as if Detective Pikachu had that much of a job to stand out in a genre that’s typically produced some truly awful movies. Even with a modest 67 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it’s far and away the most well-regarded video game movie, beating Tomb Raider and Rampage by 15 percent.
It’s unclear just how long Pikachu will be able to hold on to this top spot, given the terrifying tidal wave of video game movies that are threatening to hit in the next few years. Sonic the Hedgehog is coming in February 2020, and if Paramount Pictures can get the redesign right and make sure Sonic doesn’t look like a child’s drawing of a sleep paralysis demon come to life, anymore then they might have a shot.
There’s also a Mortal Kombat movie reboot aiming for a 2021 release, though given that film will be R-rated and feature big screen fatalities, I can’t imagine it’ll have the same mass appeal as a film about Pokemon.
Finally, there’s a Tomb Raider sequel I don’t expect much from, a Mario movie that will do pretty well, and an Uncharted movie starring Tom Holland as a young Nathan Drake. Given Holland’s star power right now (I mean, he’s Spider-Man), I reckon that could do some serious business at the box office, especially if they cast a big name as Drake’s friend and mentor Sully. I’m hoping for Tom Hanks, personally.
For now, Detective Pikachu should just enjoy the top spot. I’m looking forward to seeing the inevtible sequels and spinoffs that we get from this new Pokemon movie franchise, too. Current rumours suggest we’re getting a prequel about Mewtwo, and a live-action adaptation of the original Game Boy games.
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Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.