Back in 2009, Mattel tried to set up a live-action movie based on their ‘Max Steel’ toy line starring ‘Twilight’ star Taylor Lautner. However, the star dropped out of the adaptation, in addition to the ‘Stretch Armstrong’ movie as well. Since then, the property laid dormant and only existed in toy stores around the world. Now, it appears that the toy company has partnered with Disney XD to bring the hero back to TV.
According to Deadline, a 26-episode animated series will launch in March in the US, followed by a worldwide release in over 100 territories. Previously, a Max Steel animated show existed from 2000-2002. It followed a 19-year-old extreme sports star with a duel identity that fights super-powered villains for a secret government intelligence organization, but after the events of September 11th, Mattel decided to pull back on the promotion of the show domestically and refocus their efforts to other markets. This led to the brand becoming one of the most popular boys properties in Latin America. Because of its popularity, Max Steel existed in straight to DVD movies outside of the US, but now the brand is looking to make a return to American soil.
Along with the animated series, the toy line will be relaunched in the summer of 2013, accompanied by an online content hub at MaxSteel.com featuring exclusive games, videos, and music associated with the show, mobile gaming for iOS and Android devices, and a graphic novel series launching in the fall of 2013 from VIZ Media.
In a press release accompanying the report, general manager of Mattel Global Brands Tim Kilpin had this to say about the reemergence of ‘Max Steel’:
“As experts in play, we know that the franchise model is no longer strictly about toy making, it’s also about compelling content creation. We developed the Max Steel storyline to be rich enough to live on any platform enabling a deeper engagement with today’s multimedia kids.”
To be honest, of all the random animated series to make a comeback from my childhood, ‘Max Steel’, the one with the toys that were like more sci-fi influenced old school G.I. Joes, was the last one that I thought I’d see again. I guess we’ll see if the brand takes hold here in the US in March when the series debuts.
What do you think about the new Max Steel show coming to Disney XD? Share your thoughts in the comments below!