EXCLUSIVE: On the heels of its success with Paramount’s Sonic the Hedgehog films, SEGA has another franchise coming to the big screen with beat ’em up game Streets of Rage getting the film treatment, sources tell Deadline. Derek Kolstad, who created the John Wick action franchise and penned the Bob Odenkirk actioner Nobody, wrote the script on spec.
Streets of Rage, developed and published by SEGA, first launched in 1991 via the Genesis home video game console. The side-scroller follows former police offers who battle a crime syndicate. Since the debut game, the Streets of Rage franchise has spawned sequels across numerous gaming platforms including the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch. The franchise’s latest title, Streets of Rage 4, was released in April 2020 and has sold more than 2.5 million copies worldwide.
Streets of Rage will be the latest project under dj2 Entertainment’s belt, following Sonic the Hedgehog 2‘s impressive box office performance. dj2 signed an overall deal with Amazon earlier in the year and also is looking to adapt The Game Awards winner It Takes Two for television and film.
Also in the works from Kolstad is the heist thriller Just Watch Me, starring Gerard Butler. In addition to writing Nobody, he recently served as a co-executive producer on Disney+’s The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. The fourth film in his John Wick franchise has been slated for release on March 24, 2023, following a delay imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Kolstad is the latest John Wick creative to take on a video game adaptation. Also coming up is an adaptation of Ghost of Tsushima from Sony and PlayStation Productions. Chad Stahelski is directing from a script by Takashi Doscher.
Kolstad is repped by APA, Circle of Confusion, and Behr Abramson Levy; dj2 by APA and Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard LLP.
Matt Grobar contributed to this report.