Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Fresh off that Ready Player One cameo, a live-action Gundam movie is in the works

Illustration for article titled Fresh off that iReady Player One /icameo, a live-action iGundam /imovie is in the worksem/em
Photo: Chris McGrath (Getty Images)

Ghost In The Shell came out over a year ago, Netflix’s Death Note wasn’t very good, and that Akira remake will hopefully never happen, but anime fans have a new project to dread/cautiously look forward to. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Legendary Entertainment has announced that it’s developing a live-action adaptation of Gundam, the enormously popular anime series that has been airing—via spin-offs, alternate universe side stories, and traditional sequels—since the ‘70s (not counting the manga, movies, video games, plastic model figures, and life-size statues that have ensured Gundam is never far from anyone’s mind). Also, the eponymous Gundam from the original 1979 cartoon even made a cameo in Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One, proving that nostalgia for that series is very real and very marketable.

We don’t know anything about what Legendary is planning to do with Gundam, but it is working in collaboration with anime studio Sunrise and Pacific Rim Uprising: producer Cale Boyter. At its core, the Gundam brand is very malleable, with stories under the banner ranging from kid-friendly Yu-Gi-Oh!-style nonsense to harrowing explorations of the futility of war, many of which are completely unrelated to each other beyond general aesthetic similarities and the appearance of big robots called Gundams. That means Legendary could easily take the Gundam name and tell a completely new story that pays tribute to the brand without necessarily having to live up to any impossible expectations.

Of course, this Hollywood we’re talking about, so that’s not going to happen. The most likely possibility is that Legendary will do a straight adaptation of that original show, which is really not a terrible idea. It’s about a kid living in a space colony in the future who stumbles his way into becoming a war hero, and the enemy ace who wears a cool mask and is trying to stop him. Also, the bad guys are explicitly set up to be space Nazis, which is super hot right now thanks to the Star Wars sequels. Oh, and Gundams have lightsabers, because you might as well steal from the best.

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