Bidding war for live-action Pokémon movie rights currently underwayBy Robin-Leigh Chetty 18 April 2016 | Categories: news
If you spent your childhood in front of the television during the early 2000s, you likely encountered, then later became obsessed, with the world of Ash, Pikachu and Pokémon. While the craziness surrounding Pokémon has died down somewhat in South Africa (remember the reports of demonic practices with Pokémon Tazos?), the franchise in general still remains extremely popular. So much so that Hollywood is currently entering a bidding war to buy the rights to a live-action version.
According to The Hollywood Reporter (THR), it is Warner Bros. and Sony Pictures that are duking it out over the rights to the film. Also vying for the rights is Legendary Entertainment, which is trying to make a last minute bid. THR does, however, note that the chances of Legendary picking up the rights are slim, as the company is now owned by China's Dalian Wanda Group. As such, a Japanese franchise like Pokémon getting in the hands of a Chinese-owned company has poor odds of happening.
The motivation for all three movie studios attempting to buy the rights for a now 20 year old franchise is clear to see, with the first full-length animated movie grossing an estimated $165 million worldwide in 1999. Add to this, the numerous TV series for the franchise, as well as the countless handheld games and merchandise that Pokémon has inspired.
For now, the winner of the live-action movie rights is yet to be named, as is the expected start date for production and release schedule for the film itself.
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