Legendary Pictures Looks to Buy Epic Games

Legendary Pictures, the Warner Bros.’based film financing company behind such blockbusters as The Dark Knight and 300, may be poised to launch into the games businesss in a big way. Daily Variety reports that the private equity-backed entertainment firm is in talks to acquire Epic Games, the North Carolina-based developer of the hit Gears of War franchise. Legendary is co-financing New Line’s Gears of War movie.

Legendary principal Thomas Tull also co-founded video game publisher Brash Ent., which has made games based on the animated features Space Chimps and The Tale of Despereaux. Tull recently resigned from the Brash board of directors, but an Epic acquisition would keep him soundly rooted in the interactive entertainment industry.

Gears of War hit retail in 2006 and has sold more than five million units to date. Epic is bracing for even better sales for the sequel, which debuts in November. The company made its mark with the popular Unreal Tournament, and licensing the Unreal Engine continues to contribute greatly of Epic’s annual revenue.