Video Games Becoming Box Office Hits: Popular
Games Turned into Movies

In recent weeks, there is one TV show that has taken the world by storm, The Last of Us. The TV show is based on the 2013 video game released by Californian company Nasty Dog, and it has received critical acclaim, not only stateside but the world over. In fact, the show – which HBO has created – has been so impressive that over 4.7m viewers watched the season premiere of the show within 24 hours of its release.

And it’s not just the viewership that has been impressive. The show has been rated at a whopping 9.2/10 by IMDB and scored 97% on the notoriously fickle Rotten Tomatoes. To say the show has been a smash hit would be an understatement.

It’s no secret that the video game industry is one of the most profitable in the world. There are hundreds of video game titles being released every month both on game consoles and online. For instance, you can enjoy poker online with enhanced graphics and immersion features on your desktop. Alternatively, dive into the most popular video games in renowned games libraries, such as Steam and the PlayStation store.

But who would have thought that these gaming titles could make it to the big screen? Although The Last of Us has been released on the silver screen, it still got us thinking. What are the most popular video game adaptations of recent times?

Over the years, we’ve seen various adaptations of popular games turned into movies, so let’s explore five of the most successful and well-known video games turned into movies.

Tomb Raider (2018)

Alicia Vikander Lara croft in tomb raider

In 2018, Alicia Vikander brought Lara Croft to life in a reboot of the movie franchise. The original Tomb Raider was released in 2001 and sold over 7 million units worldwide, becoming one of the best-selling PC games ever made. The film adaptation grossed over $274 million worldwide at the box office and earned an Oscar nomination for Best Achievement in Sound Editing.

The original movie franchise had Angelina Jolie in the starring role of Croft and she was widely praised for her performance in the role, even if the movie itself received mixed reviews. Despite that, however, the movie still was the number one box office hit on the weekend of its release, and the franchise also had another instalment in the franchise.

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life was released in 2003 and performed well at the box office, grossing $160m worldwide. Jolie once again starred as Lara Croft, with superstar Scottish actor Gerard Butler performing alongside her.

Resident Evil (2002)

Alice resident evil

Based on Capcom’s 1996 hit horror title, Milla Jovovich starred as Alice in this zombie thriller series which has gone on to become one of the highest-grossing film series based on a video game with $1.2 billion worldwide. The game itself sold more than 8 million copies, making it one of Capcom’s biggest franchises ever.

Resident Evil Village is the newest instalment in the video game franchise. It was released in late 2021 and was one of the video games with best graphics released in recent years.

Angry Birds (2016)

angry birds movie

Rovio Entertainment released this beloved mobile app game back in 2009 and it quickly skyrocketed to become one of the highest-grossing apps of all time with over 3 billion downloads.

In 2016, Columbia Pictures adapted Angry Birds into a movie that went on to gross over $350 million at the worldwide box office. It also won an Annie Award for Outstanding Achievement for Animated Effects in an Animated Production.

Assassin’s Creed (2016)

Assassin's Creed movie

Ubisoft’s 2007 action-adventure title was adapted by Michael Fassbender and Justin Kurzel starring as Callum Lynch and Aguilar de Nerha respectively. Assassin’s Creed sold more than 20 million copies worldwide, making it one of Ubisoft’s best-selling franchises ever. Despite mixed reviews from critics, fans flocked to theatres resulting in a total gross of nearly $240 million at the global box office.

Sonic The Hedgehog (2020)

sonic movie

This iconic Sega classic had its first feature film adaptation with Jim Carrey as Dr. Robotnik and Ben Schwartz as Sonic himself. Since its initial release back in 1991, Sonic has been ported onto nearly every console out there with total sales exceeding 140 million units worldwide—making it Sega’s most successful franchise ever.

The 2020 movie adaptation was hugely successful earning a total global haul of over $300 million at cinemas around the world along with the Best Visual Effects award at the MTV Movie & TV Awards.


From Lara Croft to Sonic The Hedgehog, video games have found success offscreen by being adapted into films over recent years – some more successful than others.

While each movie may differ from their source material slightly here or there due to creative liberties taken by filmmakers, there’s no denying that these films have managed to captivate audiences everywhere regardless – proving that video games can be just as good as any Hollywood blockbuster when done right.

So, if you’re looking for your next great watch – why not try out some of these fan favourites? You won’t be disappointed.

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