The original silver costume clad giant hero Ultraman is returning to Netflix with a brand new CGI feature film. Titled simply “Ultraman,” the new project is currently under development for Netflix, part of a partnership with Japanese entertainment giant Tsuburaya.
Among the most recognizable pop-culture characters in the world, Ultraman is the figurehead of a media empire worth tens of billions, but compared to other Japanese originating characters like Godzilla or Pikachu, is still largely unknown in the west. Netflix is hoping to change that with a modern, western friendly take on the silver suited alien hero, with a brand new story and a brand new Ultraman.
Emmy winning animator Shannon Tindle, known for his work on films like “Coraline” and “Kubo and the Two Strings” is making his directorial debut with the project, along with Co-Director John Aoshima (“Ducktales,” “Gravity Falls”).
The “Ultraman” franchise follows the adventures of many different heroes who have taken up the mantle of Ultraman, and the hero of this new entry is Ken Sato. A baseball player returning to Japan, and tasked with becoming the next warrior for justice to take on the name of Ultraman. Things aren’t so simple as just battling alien monsters this time around however, as Ken is tasked with caring for the newborn baby Kaiju of his greatest enemy.
Netflix’s “Ultraman” is set to be the largest push yet to bring Ultraman to a global audience, and Tsuburaya are confident that this new project will be the bridge needed to bring the hero to the west. Of the project, Tsuburaya head honcho Takayuki Tsukagoshi said, “Ultraman, since it was created, has charmed many people around the world. And Shannon Tindle is one of those people. He was greatly influenced by Ultraman as a child, and he grew up to become a creator himself. I am delighted that families around the world will be able to watch Shannon and his team’s vision for Ultraman on Netflix and foster feelings of courage, hope and kindness.”
There’s no confirmed cast yet, but Netflix promises a mix of Western and Japanese actors among the talent.
If you just can’t wait, Netflix has an often overlooked Ultraman anime series currently streaming, based on the continuing adventures of the original 1966 live action incarnation of the hero.