Michael Fassbender plays the game for real
In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death, taxes and the inevitability that any big-screen videogame adaptation is guaranteed to be bobbins. Assassin’s Creed is looking to change that, precisely because director Justin Kurzel isn’t approaching it as a videogame adaptation. “It’s an incredible, visceral experience playing the game,” Kurzel tells SFX. “I know it’s deeply, deeply loved, and with that comes a responsibility to find the true DNA of the brand, but at the same time it has to be different from the game in terms of a cinematic experience.”
The film’s tale does take its cue from the first game, however, and sees Michael Fassbender’s Callum Lynch saved from death row by Sophia Rikkin (Marion Cotillard) and Abstergo industries – creators of the Animus, a machine that allows people to relive the memories of their ancestors. Utilising the Animus, Callum travels back to 15th century Spain, where his freerunning, neck-stabbing assassin ancestor Aguilar locks horns with local Templars in pursuit of a powerful artefact.
Kurzel, Fassbender and Cotillard previously collaborated on 2015’s rapturously-received Shakespeare adap Macbeth, and with Fassbender serving as producer for the first time here he was responsible for putting the band back together. But as someone who happily admits to only playing the game “recently” what drew him to the world of the hooded brotherhood? “I just thought that was a really cool concept to start from,” Fassbender tells us. “I wanted to take an audience on a fantasy ride; give them something that sits itself in some sort of scientific theory. It’s an exciting challenge.”
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