Valerian is getting a mobile/web game.

Above: Valerian is getting a mobile/web game.

Image Credit: EuropaCorp/Spil

Spil Games said it will create a mobile and web game for Luc Besson’s Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, a big-budget science fiction movie that will be released in July 2017. Besson is best known for making the sci-fi film The Fifth Element.

Amsterdam-based Spil will create the official game to go with the $180 million movie being created by film studio EuropaCorp. It’s another sign of how mobile and web game companies are turning to brands to stand out from millions of other games in the app stores.

France-based EuropaCorp has asked Spil Games to develop a strategy game in parallel with the post-production process. The game will likely launch a few weeks before the film.

“Spil Games impressed us with their vision and understanding of the world of Valerian,” said Valerian producer Virginie Besson-Silla, in a statement. “We are very excited and feel they are the perfect partner to help us share Valerian with the gaming universe.”

Spil has a global audience of 120 million monthly active players who plays a wide variety of mobile and web games, and that audience opens up cross-marketing opportunities for the film.

“People are talking about this film as the spiritual successor to Fifth Element. It’s going to be huge,” said Tung Nguyen-Khac, Spil Games’ CEO, in a statement. “We’re excited and honored to be making the game for Luc and I believe we can really intensify the audience experience around the themes and ideas within the movie.”

Engaging an audience in a genuinely immersive game has become increasingly important in the movie business, Spil says.

“It’s no longer enough to make a game that just mimics the movie,” said Tung. “Yes, players want to dig further into the story but the game also has to be cool and fun to play in its own right. The producers of the New Hollywood understand that a game which captivates its audience can massively amplify a movie brand.”

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is a reimagining of the hugely popular comic stories Valérian and Laureline created by Pierre Christin and Jean-Claude Mezieres in 1967. Luc Besson has dreamed of bringing Valerian to life since he was nearly ten years old.

Striker Entertainment brokered the game deal.