SDCC: Russo Brothers’ AGBO cherry-picks new projects…

Post-Avengers, the Russo Brothers have optioned books, comics and remakes...

Being the directors of the film which is nanoseconds away form being the most successful of all time (Avengers: Endgame for those of you hiding under a rock) gives you a certain amount of clout and the ability to quick and choose what your next projects will be. The next releases will be September’s  21 Bridges, a thriller starring Black Panther‘s Chadwick Boseman as a cop who has the idea of ‘closing’ Manhattan to trap a number of murder suspects and, Cherry, starring Spider-man‘s Tom Holland as an army medic with PTSD who returns stateside and starts to rob banks – with a theatrical release planned for 2020.

After further optioning a variety of diverse source material, including Yorkshire author Alex North’s just-published The Whisper Man , creating an animated version of Magic: The Gathering for Netflix and musing about a new version of The Thomas Crown Affair,  the Brothers and their company continue to reveal further plans.

Now, with SDCC in full swing the Brothers have announced yet more intentions including a possible live-action version of cult animated hit Battle of the Planets. During the late 1970s, Battle of the Planets – a recut,reworked and revoiced of the Japanese series Gatchaman – proved to be a seminal treat for kids and fans of early-import anime. In the Westernised versions, a five-member team (Mark, Jason, Princess, Keyop, and Tiny) collectively known as G-Force who piloted the ‘Phoenix’ and protected the Earth from the machinations of the evil Zoltar – sometimes having to come together, ‘always five, acting as one’ and transmuting into a fiery version of the ship. Newly commissioned scenes featuring exposition from a robot called 7-Zark-7 and his pet 1-Rover-1 were introduced to fill in some of the narrative gaps caused by removing the original’s nudity, violence and profanity in the script.

There have been several attempts to create a big-screen version. Warners were working on a  CGI version of the project but the studio cancelled plans in 2011. A live-action Gatchman was released in Japan in 2013.  Joe Russo has said that they might well end up directing their version of the concept as well as producing and if that was the case, it would likely be live-action. The Russos are also considering a film based on the Grimjack graphic novels for a producing role.