The Mobile Suit Gundam franchise is getting its first live-action movie courtesy of a joint effort between Sunrise and Legendary Pictures, and its announcement was definitely one of the biggest surprises of Anime Expo 2018.
But for those that missed the panel, Sunrise has officially released the teaser video for the announcement of the film, which includes the surprise appearance from Sunrise President and CEO Yasuo Miyakawa, who makes the announcement.
For those worried about the nature of live-action adaptations, Miyakawa assured fans at the panel that the film will be a joint project between the two companies, with the team not even moving forward through production until both parties agree on decisions about things such as the story scenario and mecha design. Sunrise and Legendary will be working together pretty closely.
Here's the official press release from Sunrise about the new live-action Gundam movie:
"Legendary and Sunrise announced today at Anime Expo 2018, plans to co-produce the first-ever live-action feature film version of GUNDAM, based on Sunrise's massively popular Mecha anime and science fiction media franchise. The billion dollar property was created in 1979 and has spawned a multi-platform universe encompassing televised anime, manga, animated films, video games, plastic models, toys, and novels among other media. Gundam continues to dominate master toy licensee Bandai Namco's earnings almost forty years after its inception.
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. Eventually, the people living in the colonies seek their autonomy, and launch a war of independence against the people living on Earth. Through the tragedies and discord arising from this human conflict, not only the maturation of the main character, but also the intentions of enemies and the surrounding people are sensitively depicted. The battles in the story, in which the characters pilot robots known as mobile suits, are wildly popular.
The story for the live-action version of Gundam is being kept under wraps. The project will be overseen by Cale Boyter on behalf of Legendary with the Sunrise creative team.
Legendary currently has three films in various phases of production including SKYSCRAPER, coming to theaters on July 13; and both GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS, and the live-action, DETECTIVE PIKACHU films both in post-production, with GODZILLA VS. KONG in prep."
The newest anime project, Mobile Suit Gundam Narrative, is part of the "UC NexT 0100 Project," which will tackle the events of the Universal Century storyline following the likes of the original Mobile Suit Gundam series and Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn. This anime project is currently scheduled for a release in Japanese theaters later this year.