Details of the rumor are thin at best basically describing the recurring plot of The Legend of Zelda games: a young warrior named Link must rescue the captured Princess Zelda and save the kingdom of Hyrule. It is reported that Netflix is working closely with Nintendo and is currently looking for writers to handle the adaptation from game to episodic series.
Nintendo has been particularly protective over their IPs in recent decades, likely stemming from several mishaps involving third parties who took Nintendo properties and failed to deliver quality products. There was the notoriously bad Philips CD-I title Wand of Gamelon which was one of Nintendo’s and the infamously bad Super Mario Bros. live action film in 1993. The Legend of Zelda had a short lived ’80s animated series as well which I enjoyed, but what would I know, I was seven.
If the rumor turns out to be true, it does hold water with things that Nintendo guru and Mario creator Shigero Miyamoto has said. Miyamoto said that he enjoyed creating last year’s Pikmin shorts and would like to explore more focused storytelling projects, in addition to the games he already produces.
Netflix has found a great deal of success producing their own shows for their streaming service. Shows like House of Cards, Orange is the New Black and even the last season of Arrested Development have all been good exclusives for the service to carry.
I am hesitant to get excited for the project because it is being billed as a family-oriented Game of Thrones. To me, that screams of corporate speak for fantasy, swords and magic, sans gratuitous sex scenes. If any Nintendo property has the chance at being taken seriously it is The Legend of Zelda, I just hope audiences can connect to a lead that doesn’t speak.