Copyright 2004

[ February 16th 2004 ]

Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life producer Lloyd Levin has said international returns were more than respectable enough to ensure a final chapter in the Tomb Raider motion picture trilogy despite domestic indifference, according to an article in the Official Playstation Magazine (U.S) this coming March 2004.

The original Simon West helmed movie, Lara Croft Tomb Raider - based on the best selling videogame developed by Core Design and published by Eidos plc - was released by Viacom owned Paramount Pictures in June 2001 after securing the otions from Eidos for a reported 1m. Pic has coined $251,600,000 in worldwide revenue and remains the highest-grossing female-driven motion picture to date. Although critically mauled, Hollywood superstar Angelina Jolie - who reportedly signed a three pic deal - said she would consider a second movie if the screenplay faired better than the first.

This was marginally achieved in 2003 with the Jan de Bont helmed sequel Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life which saw the former Oscar winner resume her role as British videogame aristocrat Lara Croft. However, the mediocre box office performance dampened further by a second wave of criticism cast doubt over whether Jolie would return to complete the trilogy.

Paramount Pictures cited Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Angel Of Darkness as possible cause for the disapointing returns from Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life at the U.S. box office in July 2003. The motion picture netted just 21.7 million and ranked no higher than fourth. A promotional dispute between Paramount Pictures and Regal Entertainment Group hampered matters further and resulted in Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life being pulled from 47 theatre complexes across the continental U.S.

The success of Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life on DVD and home video may well prove pivotal in tipping the scales in favour of a concluding motion picture to a very mediocre series to date. It would be dubious to suggest Paramount Pictures has aquisitioned a new breed of consumer through the adaptation of the Tomb Raider adventure series, but the existing hardcore Tomb Raider fan-base - who still harbour fond memories of speed-boat racing through the flooded streets of Venice - should continue to support and lobby for a third pic to complete the trilogy.

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