Netflix is partnering with Tsuburaya Productions to develop a CG-animated feature film based on the “Ultraman” franchise – a film that aims to bring a new, wider global audience to the beloved Japanese silver-suited character.
Shannon Tindle, an animator on LAIKA films like “Coraline” and “Kubo and the Two Strings,” will make his feature directorial debut with the project from a script he wrote with ‘Kubo’ screenwriter Marc Haimes.
John Aoshima (“DuckTales,” “Gravity Falls”) will co-direct the film which will involve an all-new storyline designed to honor the past mythology while also introducing the character to a new potential global fanbase.
The story follows Ken Sato, a superstar baseball player who returns to Japan to become the latest hero to carry the mantle of Ultraman. His plans go awry, however, when he is compelled to raise a newborn kaiju monster – the offspring of his greatest enemy – as his own child.
Sato will also have to contend with his relationship with his estranged father and the schemes of the Kaiju Defense Force. Tsuburaya Productions and Industrial Light and Magic will handle the animation which will be stylized but not strictly anime.
No actors have been cast yet, but the plan is for a mix of Japanese and western stars. Netflix is currently home to an ongoing “Ultraman” animated TV series that continues the storyline from the original live-action Japanese series of the 1960s.