Hollywood has adapted many video games to movies, but one of the most popular games of all time has eluded it until now: Pac-Man, the hugely popular arcade cabinet from the 1980s that launched a whole franchise of games about a cheerful little yellow dude (or sometimes his bow-wearing missus). At the games’ heyday in the ’80s, several attempts were made, but none ever got off the ground. There was a short-lived animated series, and then a second series in the 2010s, but that’s about it.
But with several video game movies like the Sonic franchise earning major money in recent years (and with the highly-anticipated Super Mario Bros. animated movie already in development) it looks like there is renewed interest in that old ghost and pellet gobbling hero. The Hollywood Reporter says a “live-action film” based on Pac-Man is now in development. They claim “the project will be based on an original idea from Chuck Williams (Sonic the Hedgehog) of Lightbeam Entertainment.” Bandai Namco, the company that owns the rights to Pac-Man is also involved.
So a live-action Pac-Man? What are we talking here? How will that work? Will it star Pedro Pascal as a dude in all-yellow makeup? An animated movie I could understand. It’s hard to envision Pac-Man in any medium outside of cartoons or comics — at least in a way that wouldn’t be unintentionally off-putting or bizarrely hilarious. But this is why I write these here blog posts and don’t make $100 million movies based on old arcade games about lil’ yellow chompy guys.
Have you ever seen the old Pac-Man animated series. It was … something else. We leave you with this mesmerizing glimpse.