The Defender of the Universe is the latest toy and Saturday morning cartoon to make the leap to big budget live action – and it’s sparking a bidding war.

Of all of the 1980s cartoons that have been turned into blockbuster live action movies, Voltron would perhaps be the most hardcore. He’s a giant super-robot, made up of five robot lions. He has a massive sword. Oh, and when he punches things, his fist is a lion’s jaw: which means you’re getting punched by a fist, a robot and a lion… all at the same time! That’s both the coolest (and the most 80s) idea ever, so naturally our interest has been piqued by the news that the cartoon series is reportedly getting the live action blockbuster treatment at the hands of filmmaker Rawson Marshall Thurber.

Thurber directed Skyscraper and Red Notice for Netflix, two films that used a wealth of digital effects and a Voltron movie would certainly see Thurber developing that element of his filmmaking even further. Whilst several studios are said to be pursuing the project, Netflix is supposedly not one of them, despite the streamer launching its own Voltron anime series in 2016. Universal, Warner Bros and Amazon are all reportedly in the hunt however, meaning that after  a couple of decades of near misses from companies including DreamWorks and Relativity Media, it looks like this time the project will make it into production.

Red Notice is Netflix’s biggest original movie of all time, which clearly gives Thurber the clout to push the Voltron project around Hollywood. Where this sits with his plans to shoot back-to-back sequels to Red Notice is as yet, unclear. We’ll bring you more on this one as we hear it.

The Hollywood Reporter

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