Watch: Here’s The Pokémon Movie We Could Have Got Instead of Detective Pikachu

Thursday, 21 July 2016 - 7:49PM
Sci-Fi Games
Thursday, 21 July 2016 - 7:49PM
About a week ago or so, news of a live action Pokémon movie being greenlit hit the web. Of course news of the film couldn't have been more timely with the massive success of the new mobile game, Pokémon Go. Rumors were that Max Landis, screenwriter of films like Chronicle, American Ultra, and Me Him Her, would be penning the script for the adaptation, and early on, he even gave indications that there was truth to those rumors.

Then news that the film would be based off Detective Pikachu hit the web, which has pretty much disappointed approximately 100% of 90s kids who grew up with the original Game Boy Color games. When that news hit, Landis was quick to ensure fans of the franchise that he had nothing to do with Detective Pikachu. He did confirm that he was involved with the project and that he had indeed written a script for the film. However, the company obviously decided to go in a much different direction.  

Collider met up with Landis at Comic Con to talk with him about the recent news, and thankfully, they've given him the opportunity to clarify the situation with a brief interview.

Apparently, Landis had pitched his script on a few different occasions over the course of the last year. His vision for the film included Red and Blue - the default character names for the player's Pokémon trainer and the rival from the original GBC games - and a story about Pokemon that seems rather in-synch with the conventional take on the Pokémon world from the video games and the TV show. From most indications, this is what pretty much all long-time fans of the franchise wanted to see from the film. However, Landis revealed that the company just wanted to focus on a singular character (Pikachu), and of course the whole Detective Pikachu idea was something he simply wasn't interested in.  

Given the opportunity, Landis' movie could have turned out to really be something special. His recent take on Superman in the comic series Superman: American Alien wasn't only one of the best Superman comics of the past decade, but it truly had a lot of heart to it as well. Really, isn't that what everyone's expecting out of a Pokémon movie anyway - something with a lot of heart?

As the film will likely target a very young audience, it makes some sense that the studio wanted to go in a cutesier direction by doing Detective Pikachu. Who knows, it could still turn out to be a thoroughly entertaining film. However, the Detective Pikachu idea is undoubtedly the last thing that long-time Pokemon fans want to see from a Pokémon movie, and it will more likely than not go in the direction of other recent cartoon and toy properties referenced by Landis, such as Transformers and G.I. Joe.

As things are still in the beginning phases of pre-production, there's no news yet on a tentative release date for the Detective Pikachu based film. With a plan now in place, however, it shouldn't be too long until casting decisions and further info about the movie start to hit the web.
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