The Legend of Zelda: The Hero Of Time, a live-action fan made movie that’s based upon The Ocarina Of Time is now no more. The flick, which had gathering a decent amount of buzz for the past couple of weeks from assorting gaming blogs and the such, plus was even available online for viewing in its entirely (it even had live screenings in LA and NYC), was recently yanked across the board for perhaps obvious reasons. Via the official website:
“Hey, everyone. We just wanted to let you know that Dec. 31 was the last day that The Hero of Time was available for viewing. We came to an agreement with Nintendo earlier this month to stop distributing the film. In the spirit of the holiday season they were good enough to let us keep the movie up for you to watch and enjoy through the end of 2009, but not past 2009.
We understand Nintendo’s right to protect its characters and trademarks and understand how in order to keep their property unspoiled by fan’s interpretation of the franchise, Nintendo needs to protect itself — even from fan-works with good intentions.”
For the time being, bits and pieces are still viewable, primarily via YouTube. Better watch the following while you can:
It looks okay, I guess. The fact that the final thing clocked in at a supposed 100 minutes is at least impressive. Simply because most fan based films are just five minute fake trailers to a movie that will never be fully realized. Then again, the makers of those are not necessarily lazy but perhaps just sensible. To spend so much time and energy (and money) on characters that you don’t own is fairly risky, as well as pretty damn foolish.
The nature of fandom when it comes to stuff like this is rather curious. Why does this happen in the first place? Because some people clearly love game X and want to express their connection to it in some form or fashion, especially if they’re creative. It’s not so much of an issue when the first two aforementioned resources are tapped into, it’s the third, plus the number of people to a certain extent, which is where things get complicated.
Some argue that Nintendo are being jerks, especially since there’s no official Zelda movie in the works. Yet no matter how well intentioned fans might be, and no matter how nice looking their creations are, Nintendo must strictly enforce their intellectual properties at the end of the day. Some believe that the better these fan creations, the more Nintendo has to risk (note: that’s not to say that’s why this got red flagged… not to be a jerk, but I honestly don’t understand what all the hub-but was about to be honest). A far more valid question is why Nintendo doesn’t go after people who create their own comics utilizing characters as well, and the sad reality is, movies are more high profile and have more of a potential money-wise. Meanwhile, those who create their own sequels to games as actual games is a whole different, and far more complicated topic that is best saved for later.
The funniest part is how many of these fan creators have the need to infuse their own ideas into the narrative or whatnot. Which is almost out of necessity; despite the strong narrative of Ocarina of Time, the plot is still paper thing. Which leads me to the one question I used to always ask: why not just create something featuring your own damn characters and story? Because as someone else astutely pointed out: cuz no one would then give a rat’s ass.
The Hero Of Time team seems to be taking it in stride, which is the right way to handle the matter. Perhaps this was mostly a means to demonstrate their technical merits and land jobs in the industry (yet another reason why many opt for the trailer only route since it’s a great way to mostly focus on the flash). They also seem like nice folks, though the following video has me wondering:
Not gonna lie; I wish I had been there. And it’s cool that these kids were able to pack in a movie theater in Manhattan with something that was essentially a gigantic love letter to their favorite video game. But the part where the composer chimes in is where I get iffy; even though I honestly can’t comment, since I haven’t seen the whole thing myself, I still have to wonder how much of his own original compositions are garnering such positive responses, and how much of it is simply recycled material. No offense, but I took any trademarked Zelda ditty and lazily added a few chords, it’s still going to sound like genius. Just saying.