Rumours have been circulating that Universal is closing in on a deal for an upcoming animated Legend of Zelda film. This speculation has been denied by Chris Meledandri, CEO of Illumination and producer of The Super Mario Bros. Movie.
When asked about the rumours during an interview with TheWrap at the Annecy International Animation Festival, Meledandri denied the existence of any such project. He stated, “I don’t know where that came from” and went on to acknowledge his relationship with Nintendo due to his position on their board of directors. He further added, “But in terms of the specifics, that was just something that I’ve been hearing lots of rumors. This is just about what’s next between Nintendo and Illumination.”
Even director Benjamin Renner, who is promoting his upcoming animated film Migration, commented on the situation. He stated, “I see one rumour every week” referring to the alleged Zelda film.
Although the partnership between Nintendo and Illumination has been highly successful with the Mario Movie grossing over $1.3 billion worldwide, there is no confirmation of any future projects. Meledandri’s response is standard and does not confirm or deny the rumours. It is likely that Nintendo will be the one to announce the existence of any future projects, given that they were the ones to announce the production of the Mario Movie back in 2018.
Regardless of whether the rumours are true or not, Illumination is unlikely to reveal any information at this time. Fans of the Legend of Zelda franchise will have to wait for further news from Nintendo to know for sure if an animated film is in the works.
Meledandri’s denial of the rumour appears to be a standard response. The success of the Mario Movie demonstrates the potential of the Nintendo-Illumination partnership. However, there is no confirmation of any upcoming projects at this time.