First Movie Footage from GATCHAMAN

     September 7, 2008

One of the films I’m really looking forward to is “Gatchaman.” If you aren’t familiar with the name…it’s also been called “G-Force” and “Battle of the Planets.”

“Gatchaman” was a cartoon that aired in Japan in the 70’s, but to bring it to America, the original show was heavily edited. The resulting changes made the show more kid friendly, as it edited out all the adult themes. While the original show had violence, objectionable language and death…the edited version eliminated anything that couldn’t be show on TV everyday to millions of kids. While most of the audience never knew of the changes made to the original source material, as the years have gone by, many have located and watched the original Japanese version, only to be shocked by what they’ve seen.

I was one of them.

When I watched the show as a kid, I’d always wondered why the animation with 7 Zark 7 was not even close to the rest of the show. The reason was…that character was only added for American audiences. He served to fill in time and also explain what was going on due to the radical edits of the storyline. As a kid I never figured it out… but how could I?

Anyhow, all you really need to know is the show was extremely popular and it served as a major influence to millions of children worldwide. It also led to a huge influx of Japanese Anime Stateside. Without “Gatchaman” we’d never have gotten “Robotech,” or any of the other popular anime shows of the 80’s.

So with the popularity of the show, it should come as no surprise that a feature film would be made featuring the original characters. What is a surprise is what’s taken so long. But, while I could bitch and moan about how long it’s taken, I’m just happy that Imagi is making a CGI film featuring characters I love.

While the movie isn’t scheduled for release until 2010, the studio has just released a very short video featuring some footage from the movie. They’ve also released a number of new images. Since their website is incredibly slow….all the stuff is below.

The only thing I’m left wondering is…will the movie have any reference to 7 Zark 7. I doubt it….but it’d be a nice Eater Egg.

Enjoy the clip and images. And for more on “Battle of the Planets,” you can read the Wikipedia page.

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