Pokemon is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. News about the little pocket monsters is coming fast and furious, as Pokemon GO and Pokemon Sun and Moon are both seeing a slow trickle of information released. To add to the hype, there are also reports of a top secret bidding war going on for the movie rights to a live-action Pokemon film. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Legendary Entertainment is the early front-runner, with Warner Bros. Entertainment and Sony Entertainment also vying for the prize.
Warner Bros. handled the release of the Pokemon animated films, with the first bringing in $165 million back in 1999. Legendary Entertainment recently became a part of China’s Dalian Wanda Group, a huge conglomeration of real estate and investment opportunities. If the Chinese company owned the movie rights to such a culturally relevant Japanese brand like Pokemon, it could cause some issues. China recently made it nearly impossible for Japanese films to screen in their country and only recently has that cultural embargo lifted. However, Legendary Entertainment and Warner Bros. did recently partner with Japan’s Toho Entertainment to bring 2014’s Godzilla to theaters, and they are continuing to work together on the Godzilla/King Kong shared cinematic universe. Sony is another interesting possible owner. Even though they are different branches of the company, it would be interesting to see the group that creates Playstation pick up the movie rights to Nintendo’s bread and butter.
There is no indication of when a live action Pokemon movie would see release, but it would surely be a huge international money-maker for whichever studio does come out on top of the bidding war. Stay tuned to The Nerd Stash as more information comes out in celebration of the 20th anniversary of Pikachu and friends.
Interested in a live action Pokemon film? Who do you want to see cast in it? Let us know in the comments below!