An Australian-based entertainment company is preparing to bring the iconic Astro Boy to American big screens sometime soon. Animal Logic Entertainment, partnering with Japan’s Tezuka Productions, has begun working to develop a live-action feature film based around the long-time Japanese icon.
While his popularity has never quite reached the same levels in the west, Astro Boy has been a legendary comic book staple in Japan since he first appeared in a manga series from 1951 to 1968. That series was written and illustrated by Osamu Tezuka who is “considered the Japanese equivalent to Walt Disney.” Tezuka then eventually went on to form Tezuka Productions, mostly thanks to the popularity of Astro Boy, or as he’s also known in Japan, “Mighty Atom.”
Tezuka Productions was also responsible for the 2009 animated feature Astro Boy. Despite some big names tied to it, such as voices from Nicholas Cage and a minor role from Kristen Bell, it released to very little attention in the US and grossed only $39.9 million worldwide before quickly fading out of the mainstream eye.
With this new live-action adaptation, Animal Logic Entertainment hopes to re-launch the Astro Boy brand in the west with a full-blown superhero-style film. The studio is mostly known for animation, and has worked on almost any big name Hollywood film you can think of. Credits include The LEGO Movie, Happy Feat, 300, The Matrix, House of Flying Daggers, and many more.
The live-action Astro Boy is being produced by Zareh Nalbandian of Animal Logic Entertainment. Mike Callaghan and Reuben Liber from Ranger 7 Films along with Animal Logic Entertainment’s Jason Lurst will be on as executive producers. Enthusiasm around the project seems to be high, and Callaghan in particular is looking forward to working with Astro Boy’s long established backstory and huge list of characters:
“Along with a vast catalog of stories and a rich universe of supporting characters, Astro Boy™ is one of the most endearing and enduring comic book characters of all time. We are beyond excited to partner with Animal Logic Entertainment to reintroduce audiences to one of the first great comic book superheroes.”
There is no word on a release date for the film, or when production will officially begin.
Source: Animal Logic