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Voltron: Legendary Defender - Production Stills. Courtesy Netflix.

Amazon in Talks to Assemble “Voltron” Movie With “Red Notice” Director Rawson Marshall Thurber

Looks like Amazon is about to assemble Voltron. If you were a child in the 1980s and loved your cartoons, then you likely remember the beloved anime series Voltron: Defender of the Universe, which featured the five young pilots of the Robot Lion battalion whose vehicles were capable of assembling into a massive robot called Voltron. Now, a live-action adaptation of the series is in the works.

Variety reports that Red Notice director Rawson Marshall Thurber is attached to direct a live-action feature adaptation of the classic 1980s anime for Amazon after the package generated plenty of interest from streamers and studios. Thurber will direct from a story he devised, based on a script he’ll co-write with Ellen Shanman. Bob Koplar, the head of World Events Production, the company that owns Voltron, will produce alongside Todd Lieberman and David Hoberman.

Voltron itself was based on the popular Japanese sci-fi series Beast King GoLion and Kikou Kantai Dairugger XV. The version that American audiences saw in the 1980s was dubbed and edited by World Events, its name changed to Voltron: Defender of the Universe. 

Voltron: Defender of the Universe became a hit, and was ultimately rebooted twice, once for NickToon in 2011, and again for Netflix in 2016. This isn’t the first time that a major studio has tried to create a live-action Voltron for the big screen, but so far, none of them have made it out of development. There was a project in the early 2000s (from Pharrell Williams and Mark Gordon) and another in the early 2010s (from Relativity Media, with Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer). DreamWorks was preparing to develop an animated feature, but that, too, didn’t pan out.

Thurber is coming off the mega-success of Red Notice, which currently reigns as the biggest Netflix original film of all time, with 364 million hours of viewing in its first month alone. Thurber has two Red Notice sequels he’s preparing, but it’s unclear if those would come before Voltron.

Needless to say, assembling a Voltron live-action feature will be no small feat, but Thurber seems well-positioned to bring all the necessary pieces together.

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Featured image: Voltron: Legendary Defender – Production Stills. Courtesy Netflix.

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