CG-fied Joe Asakura revealed in GATCHAMAN poster

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CG-fied Joe Asakura revealed in GATCHAMAN poster

[Update: Forget about the crappy snapshot poster that was taken back in March. Imagi's creative director Felix Ip has posted a better quality version of it and a new illustration at his blog site. Awesome design! The only difference from the old version is the year of release has shifted from 2010 to 2011. I look forward to seeing the rest of the team in their own poster.]

Over the past weekend at the 2009 Tokyo International Anime Fair, someone who attended the event has taken a snapshot picture of a poster on display for Imagi Studios' Gatchaman from the Tatsunoko's booth and posted it up on a Japanese Gatchaman fan's blog. It offers a first CG-fied look at Joe Asakura, the second-in-command of the superhero ninja team and although I'm not all too familiar with the original series, I must say the character design on him looks really cool. For another take on the character design, go here.

As far as I'm aware, it seems the current status of the action animated film remains uncertain. There were reports a few months back on the financial problems affecting Imagi and there is still no official word of a director onboard after Kevin Munroe (TMNT) dropped out during production last year. Personally, my fingers are crossed that the project doesn't fall into development hell and everything pans out.

A release date has been set to 2010.

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blauereiterMarch 24, 2009 2:14 PM

Looks exciting. I was at the Anime Fair myself, but I probably wasn't eagled eye enough to spot that.

kenshiro7March 24, 2009 9:59 PM

I hope that Imagi's fiscal situation will be helped by...Astroboy, and that...Gatchaman gets either a 2010 or 2011 release as that poster of...Condor Joe looks very cool indeed.

TheOrientalNightfishMarch 25, 2009 5:31 AM

Though I generally (up until now, at least) had very low to no hopes for this film and would at any time far rather be watching the original Gatchaman, I love how the redesigned costume has made his long hair visible through it. But on the other hand, it isn't nearly as skin-tight and figure-revealing, which is good for Ryu but bad for Ken and Joe. The hair does tip it for me in terms of which of the two I ultimately prefer but, for me, the film would need to have both to compensate for it being CGI (though I do prefer even 3D CGI, when not pseudo-Pixar, over digitally ink-and-painted traditional with shiny CG backgrounds) and not Japanese (this later point being in respect to the voice actors, composers and so on that a Japanese production could choose between and quite in spite of what most mainstream, big-budget anime tends to look like nowadays).

And I realise that there has most likely been tonnes of Gatchaman re-inventions in Japan before this but I've yet to see any images from them to tell if they made similar changes to the costumes and characters (and would like to, if anyone can direct me to where I can find some).