Despite the last few ‘Transformers’ movies being less than stellar, the giant robot movie genre is still on the rise. Aside from a ‘Pacific Rim’ sequel and a ‘Mighty Morphin Power Rangers’ reboot on the way, a bunch of films based on some classic Japanese cartoons are in development right now like ‘Voltron’ and ‘Gaiking.’ But it looks like one film from that group may be progressing faster than any of the others right now.
According to Variety, the live-action adaptation of the popular anime ‘Robotech’ has some traction once again. Back in 2007, Tobey Maguire’s company acquired the film rights and planned on starring in a franchise based on the 1980s animated series that combined ‘The Super Dimension Fortress Macross’, ‘Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross‘, and ‘Genesis Climber Mospeada’ for American audiences. Nic Matheieu was lined up to direct the film for Warner Bros. at one point, but that version of the movie laid dormant for years until last month when producers Gianni Nunnari and Mark Canton brought on ‘300’ and ‘G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra’ screenwriter Michael Gordon to revive and rewrite the script for WB. However, now it appears that another studio has stepped in and will be taking it from here.
Though the creative team is still intact, ‘Robotech’ has moved from Warner Bros. to Sony Pictures. The studio hopes to “move quickly into production” on this adaptation that looks to have an ‘Independence Day’ meets ‘Star Wars’ vibe to it. Columbia Pictures Production Chief Michael De Luca spoke about what attracted the new franchise with global appeal to their company:
“‘Robotech’ is unique in that it has always been a marriage of spectacle with human characters that seem drawn from life. That’s why we are so excited to be working with Mark and Gianni as we move forward on this project. With a history that offers an epic love triangle, a renegade hero, and a world on the brink of extinction, ‘Robotech’ offers a wide scope and a rich and impressive universe where the story possibilities are endless.”
Producer Nunnari continued by saying what he and Canton saw in the property and how it will relate to today’s audience:
“When the rights to ‘Robotech’ became available we jumped; Mark and I knew it had what big movies in today’s world must have if they want to grab everyone: insane visuals and powerful themes. The characters in ‘Robotech’ wrestle with both the destructive and redemptive powers of technology; nothing is more relevant today than that.”
In addition to the relatability of the audience’s relationship with technology, there’s definite franchise potential here with crossover potential into toys, video games, a new animated series, and comic books. Sure, Sony had all that going with Spider-Man, but after their most recent attempt at a rebooted series, they probably don’t want to put all their eggs in one basket again while Marvel Studios works on bringing the web-slinger back into the good graces of movie goers.
What do you think about Sony creating a live-action adaptation of ‘Robotech’? Is this a show that you grew up with and treated with respect? Or are you just excited to see some humans vs. aliens action with giant machines on the big screen? Sound off in the comments.