Tomb Raider movie rights up for sale as MGM and series star Alicia Vikander leave

Big changes are reportedly underway for the Tomb Raider film series. The Wrap is reporting that movie studio MGM has lost the film rights to the Tomb Raider series and that the star of the 2018 reboot, Oscar-winner Alicia Vikander, is no longer attached to the upcoming sequel.

The report said that MGM needed to greenlight the next Tomb Raider movie by May 2022 to retain the rights to the film, that didn’t happen. Now, sources have told The Wrap that “a huge number” of movie studios are bidding for the rights to the film. The report did not name any of the studios that might be considering Tomb Raider.

The Hollywood Reporter added that both studios and streamers are involved in a bidding war for the rights to the Tomb Raider movie. The opening bids were reportedly taken last week, and the process has now been compared to a “feeding frenzy,” according to the site.

So far, there’s no word on who could replace Vikander as Lara Croft, should this report be true, nor is there any word on who could direct the next movie, if it ever gets made. The report says that any movie studio that buys the rights would do a “full reboot.”

Producer Graham King and his company GK Films bought the Tomb Raider film rights in 2011 from Square Enix, and GK is now taking offers, according to the report. Meanwhile, MGM itself has been sold to Amazon.

Vikander recently said that Tomb Raider 2 was in limbo due to “politics”, and now it may be clearer what he was referring to. Lovecraft Country’s Misha Green was announced as the director of Tomb Raider 2, but that seems to have fallen apart now.

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Roar Uthaug (The Wave) directed 2018’s Tomb Raider, which was an origin story that featured Croft searching for his father, who was played by Dominic West.

The new Tomb Raider reboot fell short in the US, where it earned just $58 million, but pulled in $216.4 million from international markets for a global result of around $275 million. Warner Bros. distribution chief Jeff Goldstein said in 2018 that the movie studio always thought the film would do better internationally, especially in China. “We view the property as an international piece that drives the business,” he said. “And that’s essentially what happened.”

Filming for Tomb Raider 2 was supposed to start in 2020, but was pushed back to 2021 due to the pandemic. However, the cameras never really started rolling, and now there are apparently bigger changes afoot.

As for the Tomb Raider game series, Square Enix recently sold it along with developer Crystal Dynamics to Embracer Group in a deal valued at $300 million.

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