Netflix has some big production plans for 2015, and they may involve a new Nintendo-themed series. According to The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), the streaming service is in the early stages of creating a live-action Legend of Zelda series.
A person familiar with the situation told WSJ Netflix is working closely with Nintendo to jump-start the possible series, which would be based on the game company’s best-selling Legend of Zelda franchise, which first debuted in America in 1987. Netflix’s series would likely be about Zelda’s main character Link, a regular boy charged with saving the land of Hyrule and its ruler Princess Zelda. WSJ’s source said both the SVOD service and Nintendo are looking for a writer to pen the series they are calling “Game of Thrones for a family audience.”
It’s unclear whether this Zelda-based Netflix project will blossom into a fully-fledged production. As The Wall Street Journal rightly points out, Nintendo isn’t known for being liberal in allowing others to recreate or use the game company’s intellectual properties (case in point: Nintendo’s recently-launched and controversial YouTube Creator Program). The only major productions Nintendo has ever allowed based on its games are one season of an animated Legend of Zelda series in 1989 and the notorious flop of a film Super Mario Bros. in 1993.
However, if Netflix and Nintendo manage to pull off this new Zelda-based series, both companies will likely see a swarm of the game’s fans tuning in to check out the TV version. WSJ said a Netflix spokesperson has declined to comment, and a Nintendo rep did not respond to the publication.