In various stages of development for quite some time, it appears that a live-action adaptation of the anime classic Robotech is finally on the way! Sony Pictures has just announced that they have secured the big screen rights to the property with, in their words, “the intention of moving quickly toward production of a future global franchise”!
“Robotech” debuted in the 1980s from Harmony Gold USA and Tatsunoko Productions. A peculiar science fiction amalgamation, the show re-edited and re-wrote the dialogue of three Japanese anime series (“The Super Dimension Fortress Macross,” “Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross” and “Genesis Climber MOSPEADA”) to give the producers enough episodes to air as a daily syndicated series.
A sprawling sci-fi epic, Robotech takes place at a time when Earth has developed giant robots from the technology on an alien spacecraft that crashed on a South Pacific isle. Mankind is forced to use the technology to fend off three successive waves of alien invasions. The first invasion concerns a battle with a race of giant warriors who seek to retrieve their flagship’s energy source known as “protoculture,” and the planet’s survival ends up in the hands of two young pilots.
Immortals and 300 franchise producers Gianni Nunnari and Mark Canton are developing Robotech with Michael Gordon (300, GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra) set to provide the screenplay. This team will “bring their modern sensibility to the tentpole, reintroducing today’s audiences to the Robotech universe.” The project will be overseen at Sony Pictures by Doug Belgrad, Michael De Luca, and Matthew Milam. Frank Agrama of Harmony Gold, which is the original intellectual property rights holder, will executive produce with Michael Gordon and Jehan Agrama.
“‘Robotech’ is unique in that it has always been a marriage of spectacle with human characters that seem drawn from life,” says De Luca. “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.”
“When the rights to ‘Robotech’ became available we jumped,” adds Nunnari. “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.”
“I’m thrilled to be back in business with Sony Pictures and Gianni and I look forward to working with the studio on this global franchise-driven opportunity,” says Canton. “‘Robotech’ is a very significant and legendary part of the growth of anime into the force that it is today, and we’re excited to be adapting it for modern audiences.”
“Patience is a virtue,” continues Agrama. “We at Harmony Gold have waited 30 years for the chips to fall in place. Finally they have, and finally our dreams have come true. I am sure that our fans and the public at large will be flabbergasted with what they will hear and see on the screen. Thank you Gianni, Mark, Ralph and above all, all of the Columbia Pictures people involved.”
The deal on behalf of Harmony Gold and the producers was negotiated by Ralph P Brescia of Bloom Hergott.