WB and Maguire hop on the SDF-1 and Robotech

Associate Editor, News; Toronto, Canada (@Mack_SAnarchy)
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WB and Maguire hop on the SDF-1 and Robotech

Given the monumental success of Transformers this summer, much to my chagrin, it should come as no surprise that everyone is jumping on the giant robot bandwagon and grabbing properties left, right and center. But it is this particular property that has a special place in my heart. This was the first giant robot series I watched as a kid. It was the first time I watched cartoon characters die on screen. I ran home every day after school just to make sure I didn't miss an episode. It is with great fear, trepidation and a little bit of hope that I find out that Warner Bros. has picked up the rights to the Japanese anime series, Robotech. What could make it better, or worse, is that they have Toby Maguire in line as producer of the film, and as a result he may be eying the lead role [Rick Hunter].

After a lengthy negotiation, Warner Bros. Pictures has picked up feature rights to "Robotech," a 1980s Japanese cartoon series with giant robots known as mechas. Maguire is eying the lead role, and will serve as a producer. Maguire is producing through his Maguire Entertainment banner. Drew Crevello also is producing through his Supercool Hollywood BigTime Prods. Craig Zahler ("The Brigands of Rattleborge") has been tapped to write the screenplay.

"We are very excited to bring 'Robotech' to the big screen," Maguire said. "There is a rich mythology that will be a great foundation for a sophisticated, smart and entertaining film."

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.

Robotech could be massive. It certainly calls for more action than any other globally popular anime series. My god, can you imagine Veritech fighters against Zentraedi droids? Drool.

Sound off people! This couldn't possibly be a one way conversation type of post...

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CaterpillarSeptember 8, 2007 3:52 PM

Craig Zahler is apparently a rather talented writer, so that much is good. The next big step will be to find the appropriate director for this. Thing is, there simply aren't that many directors who can pull off a project of this scope. Even if they land a decent director I'll eagerly await how or if they'll port over the random singing and musical numbers from the anime. Maybe Maguire should get Raimi to direct this since he's already proven to be quite good at the whole song and dance thing.

blauereiterSeptember 8, 2007 9:00 PM

I was thinking maybe James Cameron, but he's already on Avatar and Battle Angel. I don't remember that much singing in the anime though.

johnSeptember 9, 2007 5:01 AM

I think JJ Abrams might be able to handle it, but he's tied down with the Trek relaunch.

I'd say Bryan Singer, but he'd put so much focus on character development that it might suffer action-wise.

Caterpiller, the Raimi comment made me laugh.

JMaruyamaSeptember 11, 2007 12:46 AM

Somehow I just can't imagine how they could successfully translate the "Robotech/Macross" series into one single movie. Unless they do something along the lines of "Macross: Ai Oboeteimasu Ka/Do You Remember My Love" it's going to be really hard. I can somewhat see Toby Maguire as Hikaru/Rick Hunter but who can they get to play Misa/Lisa Hayes and more importantly Lynn Minmay? I just can't picture Zhang Ziyi, Kikuchi Rinko or Maggie Q being able to do the singing part well enough. I fear a total "re-imaging" of the series similar to what was done to so many other 80s properties (Ninja Turtles, Gatchaman, Transformers, G.I. Joe).