Update: It’s not just a “Tomb Raider” series that Amazon is working on. The streamer has their eyes on the prize in developing an entire universe of interconnected projects, including a film, a series from Phoebe Waller-Bridge, and a previously announced video game, all based on the Lara Croft video game character, IndieWire has learned.
THR on Friday following an initial report that there was a “Tomb Raider” series in development added that Amazon struck a deal with Dmitri Johnson’s dj2 Entertainment that would reunite Amazon with “Tomb Raider” after MGM previously allowed the film adaptation rights to the video game expire. Waller-Bridge would not be involved with the game or the film, but the expectation is that a series project could come first in order to reboot the franchise and open the door for other stories to populate the universe.
Johnson’s dj2 Entertainment was behind the anime version of “Tomb Raider” that’s at Netflix, and in the wake of film rights lapsing has been working for some time on getting the rights in order, with the film rights changing hands, as well as the rights to the games in between waiting for Embracer’s acquisition of Square Enix’s assets to close.
Amazon earlier declined to comment on the news to IndieWire.
Original story below:
After starring in the upcoming “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny,” it looks like Phoebe Waller-Bridge has developed a taste for treasure hunting. The Emmy-winning “Fleabag” creator is reportedly developing a TV series adaptation of the popular “Tomb Raider” video game series for Amazon, The Hollywood Reporter reported January 27.
The project comes as part of Waller-Bridge’s overall deal with Amazon, which she renewed earlier this month. The renewal also came with the news that she was adapting the book “Sign Here” by Claudia Lux into a series. Waller-Bridge will write the in-development project but reportedly won’t star as gun-toting adventurer Lara Croft. She executive produces with Ryan Andolina and Amanda Greenblatt, former Amazon heads of comedy and drama and overall deals who launched their own studio but have an overall deal with Prime Video.
Amazon declined to comment on the news to IndieWire.
The “Tomb Raider” franchise began in 1994 with the original PlayStation action video game from British game studio Core Design. The series stars Croft, an athletic and intelligent British archaeologist who travels the world seeking rare artifacts. Each game usually sees Croft on a new treasure hunt, contending with rival hunters and enemies in the process. The original game sold over seven million copies, making it one of the PlayStation’s highest-selling games, and subsequent titles have collectively sold over 95 million copies worldwide. The series has thus far spawned 12 mainline games and several spinoffs, with the most recent games being a well-received reboot trilogy helmed by Crystal Dynamics and released between 2013 and 2018.
The Croft character has already made it to live-action twice. In 2001 and 2003, Paramount Pictures released “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider” and its sequel “The Cradle of Life,” which starred Angelina Jolie in the title role. Both films performed well at the box office but received mixed critical reception. A reboot closely based on the 2013 trilogy was released in 2018 by Warner Bros., with Alicia Vikander as Lara, to similarly mixed reviews. A sequel was in development but canned in 2022 after MGM’s film rights to the video games expired.
In addition to the upcoming “Indiana Jones” film, Waller-Bridge will also star in John Krasinski’s 2024 movie “If.” The “Fleabag” creator was previously attached to the upcoming “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” Amazon series with her “Solo” co-star Donald Glover but reportedly left after creative differences. Waller-Bridge is repped by UTA, Hatton McEwan Penford, Independent Talent Group, and Johnson Shapiro.