In Hall H at last year’s San Diego Comic Con, convention attendees were sitting around watching a mysterious cinematic short that turned out to be an announcement for Legendary Pictures’ Warcraft movie. World of Warcraft and all-around Blizzard fans in the audience went ballistic. Now, nine months later, the first image from the set of the film has been released by Empire Magazine.
The photo shows director Duncan Jones sitting in a chair as he watches a scene unfold on the monitors in front of him. To the left, you can see a knight in armor. Previous directing credits for Jones includes 2009’s Moon and 2011’s Source Code.
Although the Warcraft movie is currently in production in Vancouver, there is still very little known about the film, other than it’s an origin story based on Durotan and Lothar, heroes for the orcs and humans, respectively. According to Collider, the movie stars a slate of mid-level actors including Travis Fimmel (Vikings‘ Ragnar), Dominic Cooper (you’d recognize him as Tony Stark’s dad Howard), Robert Kazinsky (Pacific Rim), and Daniel Wu (Europa Report).
Last December, Legendary Pictures tweeted out their Warcraft movie casting announcements, and Kazinsky’s name was likely met with a few chuckles from people in the know. The actor, who starred in last year’s Pacific Rim, was also the mysterious character Warlow in True Blood’s season 6 and revealed he is a career World of Warcraft player, having put in 16-hour playing days at one point. Getting a role in Warcraft must have surely been a high point for someone who boasts 463 days of playing time in WoW.
Warcraft is a game that dates all the way back to 1994, with the first title Warcraft: Orcs & Humans released on CD-ROM, a term which younger generations probably won’t recognize. The film is most likely to focus on characters found in that first title, since Jones has said that his film will focus on the original games. Durotan is the chieftan of the Frostwolf clan of orcs. Lothar grew up in the court of Azeroth and is considered one of the greatest warriors among the humans.
Blizzard Entertainment went on to release Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness and Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos before eventually releasing the universally popular MMORPG World of Warcraft.
The Warcraft movie is currently set to be released on March 11, 2016. The film was originally slated for release on December 18, 2015, but was likely pushed back to avoid competing with the release of Star Wars: Episode VII.