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SYFY WIRE gundam

Live-action Gundam movie stomping to Netflix from Skull Island director Jordan Vogt-Roberts

By Adam Pockross

With the world becoming ever more populated with kaiju, perhaps now we need mecha more than ever. At least that’s what Netflix and Legendary seem to be thinking with their latest big bet, a new Gundam live-action movie from director Jordan Vogt-Roberts (Kong: Skull Island) and screenwriter (and comics legend) Brian K. Vaughan (Y: The Last Man).

Per a tweet from Netflix, the Kong: Skull Island director is suiting up to helm and produce the “first-ever live-action feature film version” of Gundam, the hugely popular Japanese, militarized giant robot franchise that kicked off in 1979 with creator Yoshiyuki Tomino and Sunrise animation studio’s Mobile Suit Gundam, and has filled out with more than 30 anime series, movies, and an ever-expanding army of toys.

Mechas are apparently as slow to develop as they appear on screen, as this is the same film that we've been hearing about since 2019, when Vaughn was first hired to take up the pen on the project. Like then, Legendary and Sunrise were behind the production, but now that we've got Netflix juice powering up the giant bots, perhaps the action will unfold a little bit more quickly, though no timetable has been announced as of yet.

Of course, Vogt-Roberts is no stranger to development slow walks, or to huge Japanese franchises for that matter, as he's been attached to direct a Metal Gear Solid adaptation since 2014, when he was still considered the newcomer who directed hit indie flick The Kings of Summer (which had nothing to do with King Kong).

While folks wait for giant robots to come to magnificient life on screen, they can satisfy their Gundam craving with the real thing. Since 2019, a 59-foot tall, life-sized Gundam robot has literally been walking around Yokohama, Japan (as seen in the main shot above). Of course, there's also that Pacific Rim animated series that recently hit Netflix to keep your giant robot desires in check for the meantime. But there's no doubt the Netflix film will have some big shoes to fill.