Warner Bros. to carry on making LEGO video games until 2016

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The Independent Tech

Warner Brothers have tied up a six-year deal which allows them to continue making LEGO-based video games until 2016. After a Harry Potter-themed title comes out this spring, there are a range of movies in development that could get the LEGO video game treatment in the future.

The company's wholly-owned game development studio TT Games has already trotted out LEGO-based home hits that cover Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Batman films. They are also preparing LEGO Harry Potter (due out May 28 in Europe), and a new LEGO Star Wars game.

While Batman was a Warner Bros. property, both Star Wars and Indiana Jones were produced under the auspices of LucasArts.

Since TT Games were snapped up by Warner Bros. in 2007, the studio has focused almost exclusively on film tie-ins, and Warner has some attractive family-friendly films lined up for release within the scope of this new deal.

While the first Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows film won't be in cinemas until November 2010, LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 takes its material from the first four Harry Potter books so as not to spoil the story for anyone still in the dark.

That leaves the three final Potter books ripe for harvest if a video game sequel is called for.

There are films based on the Green Lantern and Superman characters due out in 2011. Like Batman, those two superheroes are from the DC Comics stable, another of Warner Bros' business interests, and could be of interest as LEGO crossover titles.

Warner also bought out the Mortal Kombat game developers and series when previous owners Midway Games ran into financial difficulties in the summer of 2009.

Though a new Mortal Kombat film is expected in 2013, whether such a visceral depiction of the martial arts would fit with the current LEGO video games is not considered likely.

However, Lethal Weapon 5 is rumored for 2012, and Warner Bros. acted as both distributor and production company for all four previous Lethal Weapon films.

Fans have been tickled pink by TT Games' nostalgic, playful take on childhood favorites, though perhaps a digital Riggs and Murtaugh may not be able to survive the sanitization required for a family audience.

The trailer for LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 can be seen on YouTube.com