2021 Mortal Kombat is the third theatrical film in the popular Mortal Kombat franchise, released internationally on April 8, 2021. The martial arts fantasy film was directed by Simon McQuoid from a story written by Greg Russo and Oren Uziel. The film’s screenplay was created by Dave Callaham and Greg Russo. This third installment of the film series comes after the idea for a third film has been put off many times after the cinematic, critical, and commercial failure of the second film in 1997, Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. For almost two decades after the second film, the third film suffered development hell as the green light to proceed to production never went off. Between 1997 and 2020, there were two mortal Kombat films: the 1995 animation film Mortal Kombat: The Journey Begins, which fans did not enjoy, and the 2020 Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge that has been touted as the best Mortal Kombat film ever made.
Mortal Kombat 2021 stars actors like Lewis Tan, Josh Lawson, Jessica McNamee, Mehcad Brooks, Hiroyuki Sanada, and many others. The film is based on the Mortal Kombat video game franchise created by Ed Book and Jon Tobias. Before the film went into development, in late 2010, Warner Bros. Pictures, whose parent company bought the franchise in 2009 from Midway Games, started developing a new movie from a script written by Oren Uziel. The film company announced James Wan as a producer in 2015, with McQuoid announced as the director in November 2016. The principal photography took place between September and December 2019, while production took place at Adelaide Studios in Adelaide and other South Australia locations.
Warner Bros. Pictures and New Line Cinema released Mortal Kombat internationally on April 8, 2021. It was released in the United States, in theatres in 3D and HBO Max streaming service, on April 23. Since its release, viewers and critics have expressed mixed feelings about the film, praising the soundtrack, action, and faithfulness to the games while criticizing the writing.
Mortal Kombat (2021) was projected to gross between $10 and $12 million on its domestic opening weekend, but when it was released, it grossed $9 million in the United States and Canada from 3,073 theatres. It grossed $19.4 million in other territories outside the United States and Canada, taking the worldwide gross revenue to $28.4. On the marketing front, the Mortal Kombat franchise officially extends its arms to Japan by releasing the film on June 18, 2021. The franchise has never released anything in Japan before, not even the games, mainly because of the CERO gaming rules in Japan, which doesn’t welcome games with excessive gore.
Mortal Kombat’s trailer was released online on February 28, 2021, after the release of some character posters on February 17, 2021. Fans praised the trailer for the sequences of gory action and the inclusion of the game’s fatalities. Despite the franchise having more to tell in terms of the story from games, the 2021 Mortal Kombat is not different from the first Mortal Kombat film, Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. The storylines for both movies are the same, as the 2021 film is merely a reboot of the first film.