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Sony’s ‘Horizon Zero Dawn’ in Development as Netflix Series

PlayStation Productions ramps up development on hit video-game properties

Sony Pictures Entertainment CEO and Chairman Tony Vinciquerra announced Thursday during an investor briefing that hit PlayStation title “Horizon Zero Dawn” is being developed as a new scripted TV series. Additionally, Sony confirmed that Amazon Prime Video has secured the long-rumored “God of War” TV series.

The “Horizon Zero Dawn” series is in development at Netflix while the planned “Gran Turismo” series has yet to finalize a distributor.

These projects join a growing roster of popular PlayStation titles being leveraged for new on-screen content including: HBO’s “The Last of Us,” Sony’s blockbuster live-action “Uncharted” film and the studio’s gestating feature adaptation of “Ghost of Tsushima.”

“Horizon Zero Dawn” comes from Amsterdam-based Guerrilla Studios and was released on Playstation 4 in 2017. The game is an open-world action and adventure game and was one of the most successful game launches on the console, having sold more than 20 million copies worldwide. A follow-up game, “Horizon Forbidden West,” was released this past February on PS4 and PS5.

“Horizon” is set on Earth in the far future in which an apocalyptic event caused by artificial intelligent robots has wiped out most of life on Earth. The humans that populate Earth now represent a primitive, tribal society with no knowledge of the old world that exists around them, and they live among mysterious and dangerous machines resembling animals and dinosaurs that now roam the Earth. The game follows Aloy, a young woman and outcast who holds the key to understanding the ancient past and is equipped with an old piece of technology she calls a Focus that allows her to understand the machines and their weaknesses.

The games have also been spun off into comic book series and merchandise, and the follow-up game even attracted “The Matrix” star Carrie Ann-Moss to join its cast.

As Hollywood scrambles to collect fresh intellectual property and feed content-hungry distribution channels, the video-game industry in increasingly being utilized to fill the void. Netflix already houses the popular anime “Castlevania” and the well-received “Arcane,” based on the hit game “League of Legends.” It is also developing live-action series based on “Resident Evil” and “Assassin’s Creed.” Amazon Studios is currently developing a “Fallout” TV series from Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy (“Westworld”) as well as a “Mass Effect” show. Meanwhile, Peacock is recruiting an eclectic cast for its upcoming adaptation of “Twisted Metal.”

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