Comics creator Brian K. Vaughan will write the script for Legendary's live-action Gundam movie. Gundam is a science fiction anime franchise that began in 1979 with Mobile Suit Gundam, which reinvented the idea of the giant robot in the genre. In Mobile Suit Gundam, the giant robots were suits that characters stepped into that they "drove" into battle against their enemies. Although the series wasn't an instant hit, it eventually became a sensation thanks to reruns and merchandise.
Today, most anime series with giant mecha, or robots, use the concepts developed in the original Gundam series. It is also now part of a bigger franchise that includes other television shows, movies, manga, novels and video games. That also includes an entire army of merchandise featuring robot toys. Gundam has become one of the highest-grossing media franchises of all time. So it did not come as a surprise when Legendary Entertainment announced that it had plans to make a live-action Gundam movie with Pacific Rim Uprising producer Cale Boyter overseeing production on the project. This new film will be the first live-action adaptation of the series into a film not made for TV.
Now, Deadline reports that comics creator Vaughan has signed on to the Gundam movie to write the script. Vaughan is the writer behind the comic book series Saga, as well as Y: The Last Man, Ex Machina, Pride of Baghdad and Runaways. He also served as a writer, story editor and producer for the TV series Lost and was the showrunner and executive producer of the Under the Dome TV show. Vaughan co-produced several episodes of Hulu's Runaways, based on his comic book series. He will also write the script for Silver Surfer: Prodigal Son.
Although Netflix has made several anime series into live-action movies with mixed results, it's likely that the industry will see more big budget anime movies in theaters, thanks to the recent success of Alita: Battle Angel. Although industry experts expected that movie to fail, it went on to do much better than anyone ever imagined and topped LEGO Movie 2 at the box office. That means Hollywood will soon be looking for other series that might adapt well to the big screen.
Gundam has a lot of love and support worldwide, so Vaughan certainly has his work cut out for him in pleasing those fans. Although Pacific Rim took some inspiration from Gundam, a Gundam movie will have to go much further in getting fans to see it in the theaters. A thrilling story is an excellent place to start, and that is something that Vaughan is undoubtedly capable of writing for the live-action Gundam movie.