Report: Live-Action Pokémon Movie Rights Spark Bidding War

[Image: Kimamato via The Pokemon Company]
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According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Pokémon Company has been meeting with Hollywood studios to launch a big-screen, live-action version of Pocket Monsters.

Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that Legendary Entertainment could come out on top, beating out Warner Bros. for the rights. (Though, Sony is said to also be interested.) The entertainment trade publication mentioned that the fact that Legendary is owned by China’s Dalian Wanda Group could cause controversy. Japanese movies were banned in China for the past three years, and have only been approved for release recently, The Hollywood Reporter added, and there is also historical tension between the two countries.

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Legendary, however, also has a strong relationship with the Japanese entertainment industry as evident by its 2014 Godzilla film. The original Japanese studio, Toho, also releases the Pokémon animated films in Japan.

Legendary, Warner Bros. and Sony declined to issue a comment to The Hollywood Reporter. Kotaku reached out to Nintendo, one of the Pokémon Company’s owners, for comment, but did not hear back prior to publication.

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Brian Ashcraft

Originally from Texas, Ashcraft has called Osaka home since 2001. He has authored five books, including most recently, Japanese Whisky: The Ultimate Guide to the World's Most Desirable Spirit.