While there was some doubt on the matter for a while, it’s now been confirmed that Lionsgate and Saban’s 2017 Power Rangers movie is a big screen reboot of the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers TV show that debuted in 1993. The film, like the MMPR TV series, revolves around five everyday teenagers who find their hometown of Angel Grove – and the world at large – under attack by an alien sorceress known as Rita Repulsa (Elizabeth Banks).
Production on Saban’s Power Rangers (as it’s formally titled) is already well underway, as evidenced by the set photos that have leaked online – showing the Rangers doing battle with Rita and her forces, including her foot-soldiers known as Putty Patrollers. However, there’s one key player from the original MMPR property who had not been officially cast before cameras started rolling on the reboot: Zordon, the alien being who mentors the Rangers and gives them their “morphin” abilities.
That’s no longer the case though, as Heisenberg himself, Breaking Bad alum Bryan Cranston confirmed on Twitter that he’s playing Zordon in Saban’s Power Rangers. And in case anyone thought he was just kidding, the official Power Rangers movie Twitter account has re-posted Cranston’s Tweet, along with some Power Rangers-related trivia about the actor, as you can see, below. (Here’s another piece of Power Rangers-related trivia: Cranston voiced the monsters Twinman / Snizard on the original MMPR TV show.)
Zordon is a humanoid extraterrestrial who battled Rita on Earth thousands of years before the present-day (10,000 years, to be exact), only to be trapped in a time warp by the sorceress. It was previously reported (but not confirmed) that the Power Rangers movie reboot’s prologue shows Zordon and Rita fighting each another on Earth in ancient times. That same report describes Zordon as looking like a man in his 50s who is “sinewy and strong [and] a being of integrity and iron will.” Cranston does fit that description fairly well even without the assistance of makeup or costume, lending further credibility to that earlier report on the film.
It’s Cranston as Zordon who provides the movie’s five heroes – played by relative newcomer Dacre Montgomery, Naomi Scott (The Martian), RJ Cyler (Me and Earl and the Dying Girl), Ludi Lin (Monster Hunt), and Becky G (Empire) – with the Power Morphers and Power Coins that give them their morphing abilities. Zordon is also traditionally the one who gives the Rangers their Dinozords: giant animal-like machines that they pilot and can combine to create an even bigger robot known as the Megazord. Presumably, Power Rangers movie director Dean Israelite (Project Almanac) and his team of screenwriters won’t deviate from the MMPR canon in that respect.
The Zordon character has appeared in multiple Power Rangers TV shows that have aired over the past twenty-three years besides Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (as well as the 1995 big screen adaptation of MMPR); including, Power Rangers Zeo, Power Rangers Turbo, and Power Rangers in Space. Lionsgate and Saban have made it no secret that they are hoping the 2017 Power Rangers movie is successful enough to warrant multiple sequels down the line, so it’s possible that Cranston made a long-term franchise commitment when he signed on for Israelite’s film. This would be the first time the actor has done that, after having played a one-off role in the 2014 Godzilla reboot and been rumored to play Lex Luthor in the DC Extended Universe (a role that Cranston has since said he was never actually offered).
And on that note – the Power Rangers Twitter account has announced that the film’s teaser poster will arrive tomorrow (at the time of writing this), so check back here on Screen Rant soon for more Power Rangers movie-related news!
Saban’s Power Rangers opens in U.S. theaters on March 24th, 2017.
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