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Live-action 'Gundam' movie in the works at Netflix

By Kara Santos Published Apr 13, 2021 1:25 pm

The first-ever live-action Gundam movie is in the works at Netflix.

The streamer announced that it has tapped Jordan Vogt-Roberts as director and producer for the live-action adaptation of the wildly popular anime series.

Godzilla studio Legendary, with whom Vogt-Roberts collaborated with for 2017's Kong: Skull Island, is producing the movie. Brian K. Vaughn (Y: The Last Man) is writing the script and is an executive producer on the Gundam film.

"Grab your Mobile suits", Netflix's Twitter account @NXonNetflix tweeted on Monday (April 12). "Jordan Vogt-Roberts has been set to direct and produce Legendary’s first-ever live-action feature film version of Sunrise’s GUNDAM for Netflix."

While Netflix is keeping the story for the live-action film under wraps for now, the original Gundam series is set in the Universal Century, an era in which humanity's growing population has led people to emigrate to space colonies. 

Netflix detailed the story of the original franchise in a press release.

“The battles in the story, in which the characters pilot robots known as mobile suits, are wildly popular. The Gundam universe is replete with numerous story lines of love and conflict along with the popular Gundam battles, in which the characters operate robot suits called Mobile Suits,” according to Netflix.

The massively popular Mecha anime and science fiction media franchise was originally created in 1979 by Sunrise and has since become a global powerhouse. The original anime television series has subsequently been adapted into numerous sequels and spin-offs.

Gundam has also spawned a multi-platform universe encompassing televised anime, manga, animated films, video games, plastic models, toys, and novels among other media. Almost 40 years after it first launched, Gundam continues to dominate Bandai Namco’s earnings and is considered one of Japan's pop culture icons.

An 18-meter life-size moving statue of Gundam, based on the giant robot featured in the iconic anime series, was unveiled in Japan last November 2020 as part of the Gundam Factory Yokohama entertainment complex.

The Gundam movie will reportedly stream on Netflix worldwide except China, where it will be released theatrically. Apart from the director, no official news has been released yet on who will star in the movie, along with production schedules or release dates.

(Screenshots of Gundam from Ready Player One via Warner Bros.)