News + Notes

Next Neo Thing

Neo's journey may be over, but the Matrix franchise is far from finished

When it comes to ''The Matrix,'' everything that ends seems to bring a new beginning. So while ''The Matrix Revolutions'' completes the blockbuster film trilogy, writer-directors Andy and Larry Wachowski aren't about to pull the plug on their sci-fi franchise. But don't hold your breath for a new movie: ''That will never happen,'' insists ''Matrix'' producer Joel Silver.

The first franchise-extending projects will be new videogames -- hardly surprising, considering this year's ''Enter the Matrix'' jacked into an estimated $150 million. The most ambitious will be the Internet-based ''The Matrix Online,'' whose events take place in the uncertain world that immediately follows ''Revolutions.'' The Wachowskis have committed to letting the game -- in which thousands of players can simultaneously interact with one another -- dictate the direction their created universe will take. ''[''The Matrix Online''] is really their next big project,'' says Jason Rubenstein, general manager of the online division of Ubisoft, the company copublishing the game with Warner Bros. in 2004. In fact, just two weeks before ''Revolutions'' opened, the brothers were in Seattle working on its story line with the development team.

The plot is closely guarded, but the Merovingian is rumored to play a prominent role. Which reminds us: Maybe the Wachowskis' next brand extension ought to be ''The Matrix for Dummies.''

Originally posted Nov 14, 2003 Published in issue #737 Nov 14, 2003 Order article reprints
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