It looks like Detective Pikachu won't be the only major cinematic Pokémon release in 2019. By the looks of things, an all-CGI remake of 1998's Pokémon: The First Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back is on its way. Our proof? A short, 45-second teaser for what is currently titled Pokémon the Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution on IMDb.
While not very long, the new trailer (mostly in Japanese) seems to indicate that we are very much in store for a remake; the teaser uses B-roll footage of the Pokémon: The First Movie red carpet premiere in the late '90s. As the screen fades to black, orange bubbles begin to float up everywhere, the very same bubbles seen in the cloning tank that grew Mewtwo, a dangerous creature created by Team Rocket from the DNA of the legendary Pokémon known as Mew.
After the bubbles, Mew opens his glowing eyes in the darkness and we cut to him flying in the night sky behind Mew. The animation doesn't look mind-blowing, but it's still exhilarating to see these two characters back together after more than 20 years.
Check out the teaser now:
News of a remake may not sit so well with nostalgic fans who remember seeing the original in theaters, crying when Ash Ketchum (Veronica Taylor) turned to stone, and collecting the golden Burger King cards in those plastic Pokémon Ball clamshells. You know the ones we're talking about, right?
The first movie—which kicked off a long-running film series for the video game property that is still producing animated movies—followed Ash, Misty (Rachael Lillis), and Brock (Eric Stuart) as they were summoned to a mysterious island for a Pokémon tournament.
As it turns out, Mewtwo (Jay Goede), gifted with vast psychic abilities and angry at the world/his creators, summoned them with the intention of cloning their best Pokémon and pitting them against one another. If your eyes don't well up during the fight scene that features "Brother My Brother" by Blessid Union of Souls, then you may just be a robot.
A direct-to-video sequel, Pokémon: Mewtwo Returns, was released in 2000, a time when movies could still be watched on mystical machines known as VCRs.
According to IMDb, Mewtwo Strikes Back: Evolution will arrive in Japan first on July 12, before making its way across the Pacific and into America on Nov. 17.
By that time, it will probably be dubbed in English for U.S. audiences. The title also seems to serve a dual purpose, referencing how far animation has come over the last two decades as well as a Pokémon's ability to evolve into a bigger, more powerful form.