Voltron Live-Action Film Heads to Universal with Writer David Hayter

Voltron has been going under a resurgence of lately, with the popular Netflix animated series [...]

Voltron has been going under a resurgence of lately, with the popular Netflix animated series Voltron: Legendary Defender picking up a second season soon after its first launched. DreamWorks Animation, who produce the series, were originally also in possession of the Live Action writes to Voltron, and when they were acquired by Universal, it was officially moved over to their live action department.

(Photo: Sideshow Collectibles)

The film will be written by David Hayter, Deadline confirmed Friday. The writer is no stranger to big screen adaptations of genre properties, of course. He wrote the screenplays for the first two X-Men films, as well as Watchmen. He's also an accomplished voice actor, having done voices in Star Wars: The Old Republic, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Marvel Heroes, CW's The Flash series (as King Shark), and most famously as Solid Snake in the Metal Gear Solid series.

Universal, interestingly, has only commissioned the script so far, and not actually committed to making the movie. Basically, they want to see how the script is and go from there. Of course, they may also be waiting to see how 2017's Power Rangers reboot goes for Lionsgate. The two properties have some striking similarities, after all, as they both feature a group of young (or mostly young in Voltron's case) kids chosen to pilot animal-based robots that combine to form one, ultra-powerful robot. The similarities mostly end there, of course, and are just superficial, but it's close enough in Hollywood terms to be an issue.

Voltron: Defender of the Universe aired in 1984 and 1985, adapting an anime called "Beast King GoLion" and another, unrelated anime called "Armored Fleet Dairugger XV" - there were a lot of giant robot anime in the 70s and 80s, especially once Transformers became a worldwide hit, and many of them got repackaged for the US (see: the complicated history of Macross).

Voltron: Legendary Defender is the fourth attempt at reviving the series, and definitely the most successful with its second season pick-up.

As for a live-action Voltron film, there have been projects in various stages of development hell since July 2005, when Pharrell Williams (yes, that Pharrell) was attached as producer and composer on the project. A script was completed, but it got stuck due to legal battles over the rights.

Voltron is still a beloved property, with the shows, comics, and more, so hopefully the movie comes to fruition.