Gatchaman Movie Imagi.jpg

The Original White Shadow Returns

By Miscellaneous | Trade News | July 9, 2009 |


Gatchaman Movie Imagi.jpg

There hasn't been a lot of chatter regarding Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, the CG-animated movie coming from the makers of the entertaining TMNT and the upcoming Astro Boy.

The film, based on the crazy-fun and highly successful anime series of the same name, featured five teenagers gaining superhuman abilities in order to stop an alien invasion. Of course, this is grossly oversimplifying the awesomeness of the show and the characters.

The show was released in the US under the titles Battle of the Planets, Eagle Riders, and G-Force (which now has the unfortunate associations with talking rodents attached to it). It is often considered the inspiration for the subgenre of Japanese television known as Super Sentai (a good chunk of which has shown up in the States as the various Power Rangers iterations and similar shows).

Originally Kevin Eastman (TMNT) was set to write and co-direct with Lynne Southerland (Mulan 2), but both left the project. Last I heard, Paul Dini (Batman:TAS, Lost) took over scripting duties, and the film is set to drop in 2010.

Anywhoodle, the teaser has been leaked, having debuted at Anime Expo 2009. Some enterprising attendant recorded it with surprising clarity, I must say.

Considering the title, it looks like they will hew fairly close to the Japanese version instead of the American one, which was pretty kickass despite all the attempts to ruin it (7-Zark-7, I spit at thee). I still wonder if the main villain's little quirk, as well as Keyop's swearing, will return though.

Of course, finding that clip led me to hunt down the NTT-East Gatchaman commercials. Two were made, both in a live action form (featuring boy band SMAP) and a more traditional anime version. They are pretty awesome, especially when you realize that NTT-East is a telecom company, and that these were part of a campaign to promote their then-new ISDN service.

We have nothing this great (well, I think Catherine Zeta-Jones in the T-Mobile spots is pretty nice, but that is more for CZJ than anything else).


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