It’s kind of unbelievable that Hollywood has struggled with producing a halfway-decent Tomb Raider adaption…as many have pointed out before me, the basic premise of “Indiana Jones, but a smart and beautiful woman” shouldn’t be this hard to get wrong. But if the movies can’t pull it off, maybe television can.
Netflix announced today they’re teaming up with Legendary to produce an anime version of Lara Croft’s further adventures. The anime (yet to be titled, but we’re guessing the title is “Tomb Raider”) will be set in the timeline of the most recent game trilogy, specifically after the events of the third game.
The details of how it got started are unclear — maybe Square Enix looked at the Castlevania anime and said “We want one’a those” — but it’s happening. Serving as writer and executive producer is Tasha Huo, who’s also involved in the Witcher spinoff Blood Origin. Also involved are dj2 Entertainment, who has their fingers in just about every video-game-to-TV-series pie (they have shows under consideration based on Sleeping Dogs, Life Is Strange, Disco Elysium and more).
Lara has been involved with animation only ONCE before, and if you blinked you might have missed it. In 2007, a company called Gametap commissioned a series of ten animated shorts called Tomb Raider Revisioned. They were an on-demand video game rental company and this was their one and only foray into the realm of original entertainment production. You might think, given the source, these would be terrible, but the production values were actually quite high, and they involved the talents of Jim Lee, Warren Ellis, Peter Chung, Brian Pulido, Gail Simone, Michael Stackpole, Ivan Reis, Cully Hamner, Christos N. Gage, Louie Del Carmen, David Alvarez, and Six Point Harness, with Minnie Driver performing Lara in each short. Worth checking out, if you can find it.
As for the Tomb Raider Netflix anime, it currently has no release window.