Nearly forty years after their TV debut, the robot lions are finally headed to the big screen…and it looks like just about every studio in Hollywood wants a piece of the action. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Red Notice director Rawson Marshall Thurber is developing a live-action Voltron movie, which is currently the subject of a massive bidding war.
Thurber came up with the story for the film and will direct from a screenplay he co-wrote with Ellen Shanman. He began pitching the movie two weeks ago with a package that reportedly included a teaser reel to help explain his vision for the project. So far, “six or seven studios” have expressed interest, including Warner Bros., Universal, and Amazon. But surprisingly, the list doesn’t include Netflix, which released Red Notice last fall. Netflix also famously aired its own Voltron animated series, Legendary Defender, from 2016-2018.
The original Voltron cartoon premiered in 1984 as a remix of Japan’s Beast King GoLion series that launched in 1981. The show followed five pilots whose vehicles combined to form the titular giant robot, which they used to protect their planet from interstellar threats. Over the years, the franchise has spawned various spinoffs along with several comics, toys, and video games.
THR’s sources indicate that the film could land a studio by the end of this weekend. Regardless, this isn’t Hollywood’s first attempt at bringing Voltron to theaters. In 2005, producers Mark Gordon and Pharrell Williams began developing their own adaptation that also would have featured music from Williams himself. More recently, in 2016, Universal landed the distribution rights with David Hayter writing the script. But needless to say, this version of the film never materialized.
Thurber is currently working on two back-to-back Red Notice sequels and also just signed on to write and direct a new Dungeons & Dragons TV series. So it isn’t clear where Voltron will fit into his upcoming schedule. Whatever the case, David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman will produce the film with World Events Productions head Bob Koplar.
Are you excited to see what Thurber has planned for Voltron? Let us know in the comment section below!