CGI Zelda Movie

Here we have a video pitch for a CGI Zelda movie dating back to 2007 by Imagi Animation Studios, producers of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Astro Boy feature films. It sees Princess Zelda transporting what is assumed to be the Triforce, when she and her soldiers are promptly attacked by Ganondorf’s minions. As you’d expect, Link appears to save the day, as does the Gerudo King himself to presumably carry out the opposite.

The visuals are very nicely animated, even if you don’t agree with the Dreamworks-esque art style. Sure, it’s a generic premise, but don’t forget that this clip was only intended to pitch the movie to Nintendo and doesn’t necessarily represent the intended final product. While I can’t really make a defense for Ganondorf’s appearance, it’s a pretty cool clip.

Also, is that the velociraptor sound from Jurassic Park at 00:52? Now I’ve ruined the video for you too–you’re welcome!

Source: Vimeo
Via: Kotaku
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  • Andrew Skeen

    ur right.. ganondorf looked kinda stupid… it would have been a great movie though.. will it be cannon and where would it have fit in the timeline

    • reeceh92

      Obviously we'll never know for sure, but this looks very inspired by Twilight Princess based on the nature of the enemies (which makes sense, as this was made in 2007). Maybe it could have been a sequel or prequel to TP.

  • Ericzander

    No movie would be able to meet people's expectations. I say they shouldn't make a Zelda movie ever.

    • magoria

      I agree. These hipsters should go and play harry potter instead.

    • wandersage

      I can imagine them doing a pretty good movie that added a new saga to the story (It would have sucked if they just made a movie version of an existing zelda game) But I can also imagine them creating a terrible movie as well. Plus there's a pretty good chance they would have given Link lines, which would ruin the whole "link never speaks and therefor is an avatar for each individual player" thing. I'd rather they don't even make a movie, but in the right hands I do think one could turn out to be pretty good.

  • Ben

    The only problem with this video is that ganondarf looked stupid, other wise i would like all this in TV

  • Talina

    I frankly would lOVE to have this as a movie. Or a live action one. Really though, that’s just cause I’ve been wanting one for a while and honestly I don’t think it sounds like a bad idea. Yes, Gannon looked weird. But they can always change that. XD

    …and linkwashotashellgoodbye

  • Zelgeek

    Executed properly Zelda could make an incredible film. This was unfortunately not propor execution.

  • Link

    Zelda looks like padme in star wars the clone wars with the robe on!

  • GreatMidnaFan

    This would be an okayy movie I like the art on Link and Zelda but Ganondorf doesn’t look like himself, he looks like a red-haired, green skinned Sephiroth. o.o

    • GreatMidnaFan

      I love the art of the hero's bow though

    • true

  • Kael

    Calling the video a DreamWorks-esque art style is kind of insulting to the people who made this.
    You're basically trivializing their work as unoriginal and uninspired.
    I mean, its not fantastic, but at least try to remember that there are other animation studios out there besides Pixar and DreamWorks.
    I don't like being compared to others, do you?

    • Rust

      Of course they're talented, but that doesn't mean this doesn't evoke DreamWorks' style. It simply does, and feigning like it doesn't is perhaps more insulting because it's dishonest.

      Either way.. DW is amazing, so I would be flattered.

    • 2a4ap

      More like insulting dream works, because at least they have variety in their character design. 😉

      Yes, the first ten seconds showed promise … made me think of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. But it just got progressively worse. I'm not opposed to a CGI tv show, but don't let these people anywhere near the franchise.

    • reeceh92

      You're reading WAY too much into something that immediately followed "The visuals are very nicely animated". I never said this was unoriginal or uninspired, nor even made any small implication of that.

      Every art form is inspired by something. Zelda itself has taken elements from Peter Pan, Super Mario 3D Land and even Twin Peaks. That doesn't mean it's not an original series. Drawing comparisons in regards to a SINGLE aspect is very different than calling something a rip-off–especially as DW and Pixar are some of the few major animation studios people immediately think of.

      Besides, this was just a pitch, a simple IDEA put into something for Nintendo to visualise as they consider the concept. Based on those merits, I acknowledged that we'll never know the true potential of this movie. I don't see why comparing this to something as high-quality as DW is insulting.

    • Davad

      Kael has a good point. I agree completely. People are way to quick to call something a copy or clone these days. People will watch 10 seconds of a MMO and without knowing anything about it or seeing any gameplay they call it a WOWclone just because WOW is the most well known MMO. I have nothing against wow, I think its great, but not every MMO is a WOWclone. Seems that Animation Style commenters aren't much better at making distinctions, painting whole genres or styles as being a clone of one one company's work or even one game. I'm sorry but that aplies to the term Zeldaclone on this site as well. And I found this site because it is one of my favorite series, maybe even my number one favorite. Anyway the point is not everything of a style or genre has to be a clone of that something's most well known piece, be it an installment, series, or even company. So I say good point to Kael. Sorry about the rant everyone but it had to be said eventually.

      • Davad

        I am have made my reply after many different Dream works comments were made by and before Reece's reply was posted to Kael. I still think Kael has a point about calling things a copy or clone. I also think Reece has a point that his comment was not an insult. Just saying this to make my intentions clear.

        • Davad

          Wait Reece's was posted before i read Kael's comment. Sorry about that. I had not seen the drop down replies yet when I posted my first reply and hadn't realized that that was why I hadn't seen Reece's reply when I posted my second. Sorry for any confusion.

      • Reece

        It is a good point that I agree with, my only issue being I don't think it even applies here. You'll notice I never used the word "clone" or any such terms to suggest that this film pitch copied something else. Again, there's "rip-off" and then there's "inspiration".

        The fact is, everything is similar to something else. There's no art form that can't be compared to something else, no matter how minor. There is no deep meaning or implication to the mention of DW–it's simply a frame of reference, a quick description in the form of a comparison in order to give the reader an instant visual image.

        And again, to make this clear: I don't believe inspiration is a negative thing, I actually find it rather respectable.

        • Davad

          True, I didn't initially realize he was specifically referring to you. I don't think you did anything wrong.

  • Z-MAN7

    Argh! Can't see the video. Something about domain permission.

    • Echon

      Click on the video box and it'll take you to Vimeo page. You can watch it there.

    • Davad

      I can't see it because it requires some account I don't want to pay for.

      • Davad

        Never mind I hit the wrong part of the box, I can watch it. Echon has a point. just hit the background of the image guys.

  • Rust


    – Zelda herself looks great

    – These animators are clearly very talented and passionate about Zelda


    – Ganondorf has way too much 'Sephiroth' about him – especially the hair. I feel like they don't 'get' him.

    – The overworld has TP's problem of being overly drab and lacking sufficient color and magic. It didn't feel enchanting or epic… it was just an ocean of muddy brown.

    – I dig Link's hair and the air of young heroism about him, but would have hoped for a more original look overall.

  • Gwydion

    I can't say I'm sad this didn't happen. While there were parts I liked about TMNT, the story itself was all over the place. I get the feeling they would have similarly tried too hard with a Zelda story as well (not to mention I just don't really care for their human designs). Still, I'm sure I would have given it a shot anyway.

  • Echon

    The animation is beautiful. I loved Zelda's design and Link looked pretty neat too. I couldn't help but burst out laughing when I saw Ganondorf, however. He's too…Sephiroth, like GreatMidnaFan said, though at the time I thought Ruber from "Quest for Camelot" only more youthful and attractive.

    All in all, it was an enjoyable watch, even if Ganondorf's design was ridiculous and I can't take him seriously as a 'pretty boy', so to speak.

  • Aidiel

    I don't think the movie would be very good.
    There are so many games, and they'd disappoint a lot of fans if they didn't do their favorite, trust me, I know people like that. Everyone has a sort of voice for Link, and many people would be confused by having a voice they were unfamiliar with. Its ridiculous these days though. You miss one small detail and the fans freak out.
    They should never make a Zelda movie unless they know EXACTLY what they're getting into and know EXACTLY how to execute things without disappointing the fans.

    • Badwolf16

      Agreed. Also, for those of you who would want a live action film, you really shouldn't. As all animated media to live action film movies are, you would just complain about it, and also it would be a waste of money since everyone has a different favorite game.

  • Metal Man

    That Ganondorf looked hilariously bad, like a big dumb buff Ganondorf palette Sephiroth. And Link looked almost as dumb. The animation was well done but they really could have done a better job with the character designs. Even Zelda's, which was one of the best in this trailer, looked kinda bad.

  • Sabooru

    Any chance of a direct link?

    I'm getting this message:

    The creator of this video has not given you permission to embed it on this domai

    • Nick

      yeah im getting the same message

      • Badwolf16

        click inside the video box, and not the link.

  • Bland

    Why do these people never use their own style? Stop copying Pixar and Dreamworks you creatively inept fools, you could be doing so much better.
    Honestly they'd have had much higher chances had they actually made a style of their own that looked even moderately like a Zelda game instead of a Pixar movie with Zelda and Link skins pasted over a Pixar movie.
    But way to blow it, idiots. These people don't deserve hit it big if their mentality is to play everything perfectly safe. Are you 50 and have your retirement on the line? No? Then be freaking creative.

  • Canyarion

    That didn't feel like Zelda to me at all. Random Gaston-like knight, ugly/generic cartoon style, dark setting, hardly recognizable Ganondorf…
    Zelda to me is about lonely adventure, beautiful environments, spirit-lifting characters and Link's quest of finding courage.
    Link's epic look in the end is the only thing that saved the trailer.

    That being said, I think something like this could work as a Saturday morning cartoon.

  • Destiny

    Gannon looks like Groose and Link looks hot with his bangs over his eyes. This reminds me of SW clone wars, but it still looks cool.

  • KidWiththeBackpack

    I didn't even watch the video, because the thumbnail looks bad enough. Why the hell did they make Link look like an emo teenager? It's so gross, I can't look at it… Please never make a Zelda movie…

  • LovingTheTrolls

    Holy sweet shizballs, some of the trolls here need to step away from their keyboards and RELAX!! I'm not talking to the one's who have posted constructive critique, I'm talking to those who post frankly ridiculous comments like "It's so gross, I can't look at it" (not mentioning any names, of course!). This movie is in no way bad whatsoever, it is just DIFFERENT from your own ideas (which I highly doubt are perfect themselves). Come back when you've got enough experience to shamefully slate something like this…but at that point, with your experience, you will actually realise that this isn't half bad. "Stop copying Pixar and Dreamworks you creatively inept fools"…I mean geez, would you say that to the creator of this one-on-one in person? No – then don't feel as though you can do it from the safety of your bedroom, it causes the same damage.

    *sigh*…but at the end of the day.. .

    • 2a4ap

      Dude, if it were an in-person conversation with any given commenter, it would likely start off with a compliment, like "the frame rate was nice," followed by … but "srsly WTF is up with Ganandorf?"

      These kind of things are only uploaded for two reasons. Someone with in the company is trying to generate interest in the project in the hopes that the fans will love what they see and demand it (all while giving the studio itself plausible deniability), or that someone has a huge ego and wants to release it to showcase their own brilliance.

      Either way, this one fails. Started off with amazing animation, then got horrendous in design and story. So when people have thin skin about honest criticism because it's unkind, or complain that it's insulting to be compared to DreamWorks, it seems a bit silly to me.

      They put themselves out there in an inappropriate manner (to which Nintendo could take legal action), and it wasn't even good.

  • LovingTheTrolls
  • Seshimaroo

    This was really cool and interesting! So far, this is the onlt "official" company I've ever heard of that wanted to make a movie based upon The Legend of Zelda. It's nice to know real, big film companies want in.

  • Davad

    I agree it needs a more accurate depiction of Ganondorf but otherwise a great video. Doesn't need to become an official movie though. With official supervision I am honestly not sure how they would pull it off. They probably won't take the chance after the Mario movie's failure-. The Mario Movie could have been MUCH better from what I've heard, and stuck to the games style better. Zelda is better movie material but without Link talking I don't think it can be done. Could be wrong though. Nintendo has pulled off unexpected miracles before.

  • Matt814

    i am not allowed to watch 🙁

    • Davad

      Had the same problem myself. Click on the background and it will work.

  • Johannes/Jom

    It’s pretty cool (except for Ganondorf….ugh), but I wouldn’t want any voice acting in Zelda whatsoever. It would’ve been cool as a silent film though. 🙂 I think both Link and Zelda’s designs are cool, and the Pixar-esque artstyle isn’t that bad. 🙂 But I would honestly be a little afraid if Zelda was left with someone else other than Nintendo, so it’s a no for me. But very nice (and brave) try 🙂

  • John von Shepard

    If Nintendo have Brain they would have green light this!!