• my image ANGRY BIRDS
    First look on the suicidal squad and their new look.

Gatchaman and AstroBoy in Theaters 2009

Yep, you heard me right. Thanks to Imagi Animation Studio, creators of the latest TMNT CGI movie the team of five high flying acrobats and our beloved robo kid will soon hit the theaters. Both movies are in CGI, with Kevin Munroe (director of TMNT) as Director for Gatchaman and Colin Brady (Designer of Toy Story 2) as Director for AstroBoy. Both films are scheduled to be completed in last quarter of 2008 and set to be released in 2009.

As of now there are no known information for the AstroBoy film but Gatchaman had already released several concept art studies on the Imagi Site. I'm not really a die hard fan of Gatchaman. I first seen Gatchaman in 90's dubbed as G-Force and it didn't excite me a lot. Then years goes by and I'm reintroduced to Gatchaman when I met Wilson Tortosa, the artist of the latest Gatchaman Western adaptation comic book Battle of the Planets.

Here are some updates about the upcoming Gatchaman film:

  • The feature will be directed by Kevin Munroe, the director for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Some of the original design staff have connections to earlier Gatchaman productions in Japan.

  • The storyline will feature an all-new adventure focusing on Ken, Joe, Jun, Jinpei and Ryu. The story is tentatively set to take place before the team's first official mission, and will show how the heroes develop into the Science Ninja Team.

  • The story will take place on Earth.

  • The story will be set in the Gatchaman universe, not Battle of the Planets. There is no Spectra, no Zoltar and no 7-Zark-7 (however, I wouldn't put any in-jokes past the production crew).

  • The atmosphere will have a dark, gritty feel with plenty of fighting action (concept art at right is of Ken and Joe in Utoland). Check out the latest concept art on Imagi's Web site and Ain't It Cool News.

  • According to Harry Knowles at aintitcool.com, the character designs resemble the originals, only modeled in CG.

  • A two-minute trailer premiered March 22, 2007 at the 2007 Digital Entertainment Leadership Forum in Hong Kong. Description available at Butterboom.com.

  • Imagi just signed Robert Mike Kamen to write the screenplay. Kamen's other works include Taps, The Karate Kid and its sequels, A Walk in the Clouds, The Power of One, Lethal Weapon 3, The Professional, The Fifth Element, Kiss of the Dragon, Bandidas, the Transporter movies and the upcoming Taken, starring Liam Neeson.
Below is a wonderful concept art created by Artgerm. He didn't mention if this is the final designs. Artgerm created a new look for the team contrast to the poster above and slightly modified the Gatchaman Logo.

And Imagi don't want to disappoint those AstroBoy fans and released a teaser poster like the one above and a teaser concept art banner found in there site.

I think this film will be a hit. Imagi did a very good job with TMNT and surely they will hit the same spot on Gatchaman and AstroBoy.

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