12/6/21

Here is a small feature film update reported from Emerald City Comic Con, where a panel about AGBO's upcoming projects discussed many of the company's plans. Among the panelists were AGBO's co-founder, Mike Larroca, Vice-President of IP/Development Albert Kim, and Vice President of Creative, Kassee Whiting. Kim said the Russo brothers are apparently set to direct the upcoming Battle of the Planets feature themselves. As further reported by Collier "CJ" Jennings on the But Why Tho? podcast website:

"The Russos are also slated to direct an adaptation of the classic anime series Battle of the Planets. Dan Casey, who wrote F9: The Fast Saga, has partnered with AGBO to write the script. Kim briefly discussed how the project would have a universal appeal similar to the original Battle of the Planets show. 'You sort of have to develop everything for a global audience,' he said while also stressing that the film would stay true to the core of the original series. Kim, Whiting, and Larroca also discussed how AGBO approaches crafting franchises, with Whiting aiming for a 'holistic experience' that would build organically upon films rather than attempting to pump out sequels."

You can read the full story here.

 


 

10/14/21

Director Joe Russo was at the recent MIA Film and Television market in Rome, Italy on Thursday, October 14. He was interviewed about his company's upcoming projects by Melanie Goodfellow of Screendaily, and had the following to say about the current status of Battle of the Planets:

Goodfellow: "Another project you announced recently is the feature adaptation of the Japanese anime series Battle of the Planets for which Daniel Casey is writing the script, in his first major screenplay since Fast And Furious 9. Do you have any updates on that?"

Russo: "We're just off on script on that. We took two years to acquire the rights to it and to settle that all up and the way we work at our company, it usually takes us a year to go to script because we'll do complementary artwork and investigate the world of the story, write a bible, write bios, so we have a deeper understanding of the story when we actually go to script… usually when we go to script we do it quickly."

Please go to Screendaily to read Mr. Russo's entire interview.

 


7/22/21

Some more Battle of the Planets feature film news has been reported today.

Deadline.com is confirming the earlier report that Dan Casey is the writer for the Battle of the Planets feature.

"Casey is working with Joe and Anthony Russo and their AGBO to help construct the foundation for a Battle of the Planets universe. Casey’s feature screenplay will kick off the expansion of this franchise across multiple media. AGBO and Casey will work with Tatsunoko, the creators of the iconic, original anime series, on concepts to explore and expand the IP in-depth."

You can read the much longer story here on Deadline.

 


6/23/21

Here's a small bit of Battle of the Planets feature film news that appeared today!

Actor, producer, director and writer, Dan Casey has been confirmed as screenwriter for the project. The news was reported by Adam Graham, in the June 23, 2021 edition of The Detroit News. The relevant information from the article follows:

"Casey is now focusing on screenwriting — he also wrote 2018's sci-fi adventure Kin, with Myles Truitt and Zoë Kravitz — and he has a number of projects in the works, including an adaptation of Battle of the Planetswith the Russo Brothers (Avengers: Endgame), an adaptation of the 1963 sci-fi novel Way Station with Cloverfield director Matt Reeves, a superhero project with DC Films that is still TBA, and an original script titled The Pinkerton that he sold to JJ Abrams' Bad Robot Productions."

Casey's current project in theaters on June 25, is F9: The Fast Saga (the ninth The Fast and the Furious film), which was co-written with director Justin Lin. I would link directly to the story, but it is currently behind a subscription wall.

 


3/10/21

Nearly a year after the previous major update about the Battle of the Planets feature, the Russo brothers were interviewed by Eric Francisco about their time growing up in Cleveland, Ohio and how it helped them with their careers. They mentioned the Battle of the Planets feature in one specifc portion, which can be read on inverse.com:

"And there's Battle of the Planets, the childhood favorite of the Russos. Known as Gatchaman in its native Japan, its premise of a five-person superhero squad who defend Earth in bird costumes was the influential template for milennal hits like Voltron and Power Rangers.

'We're working hard on the script, we're hoping to get into our pur pipeline at AGBO soon,' Joe says. 'We're reinventing it for the modern age. We loved the cartoon growing up. We're gonna take what we love and convert it into something new.'"

There is much more information about the Russos' early lives and projects in the article, as well as their recollections of rushing home to watch Battle after school.

 


 

4/22/20

The following was reported from Joe Russo via collider.com

Joe Russo, co-director and producer of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame with his brother Anthony, recently shared some updates on a few of the highly-anticipated projects they currently have in development at AGBO. Speaking with Collider’s Steve Weintraub in an exclusive conversation, Russo teased some details about the current status of their live-action adaptation of the 1977 animated series Battle of the Planets.

“It’s not going to be a direct adaptation of the series,” Russo said of Battle of the Planets. “It’s going to be our own story that we tell surrounding a group of genetically altered kids who are involved in a space war… That could take months of gestating, and trying to figure out what the new mythology is. And then we commit that to a bible, and then from that bible we do some artwork as exploration, and once we have artwork that we’re inspired by we then commit that to a script. So we’re in the bible phase for Battle of the Planets at the moment.”

Battle of the Planets was an Americanized version of a Japanese cartoon series titled Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, about a team of young fighters called G-Force tasked with defending Earth from intergalactic enemies. It was not dissimilar from Voltron, in that G-Force flew one giant spaceship that contained several smaller, equally righteous vehicles. It’ll be interesting to see what the Russos’ take on the series ends up being, but blockbuster space battles seem firmly within their wheelhouse.

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Collider.com also posted a short video interview with Joe Russo that discussed much of the same content, but in a little more detail. 

 


7/19/19

During the A Conversation with the Russo Brothers discussion panel at the San Diego Comic-Con, it was announced to a very appreciative crowd that among other projects there may be a Battle of the Planets feature film in the works! In what should have been a huge hint to the direction of the panel, Anthony Russo wore a t-shirt with members of the team on it.

Anthony Russo in his Battle of the Planets t-shirt, followed by the logo shown on a video screen during the panel (photos courtesy of Sharon Shaw).

No real specifics have been revealed, simply because there are none yet. However, the following is what is known:

The Russo brothers' AGBO Films has a production deal in place and will look to develop Battle of the Planets as a feature film. What kind? Joe Russo said, "If we were to make it, it would be live-action," and "We love this show, I used to race home from school every day just to watch this at 4 o'clock."

The "If" in his statement refers to the fact they're not sure if the brothers will direct the potential Battle feature or produce it and hand directing duries off to someone else. Also, no writer has been chosen for the project yet.

All of this is, of course, very early into the process of the possible project. I hope to be able to pass along more information and details as they become available!