Live-action remakes of classic childhood animated movies have become a trend in Hollywood, with some of the most recent including Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast and The Jungle Book. Pokémon will soon join these ranks with the release of Detective Pikachu next spring, a new franchise collaboration between Legendary Entertainment and the Pokémon Company.
The film features CGI versions of the creatures and gives Pikachu the ability to speak. Legendary Entertainment purchased the rights to the movie in 2016, shortly after the release of Pokemon Go, an augmented reality game that caused a worldwide frenzy.
Official Detective Pikachu Trailer
Set in Ryme City, Pokémons and humans exist side-by-side and most Pokémon are trained by humans and used in battles. Unlike his fellow Pokémon, Pikachu wants to be a detective rather than fight. While in the past Pikachu has been known for only saying “Pika, pika,” or “Pikachu,” in the film he is voiced by Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool, The Proposal) and is capable of talking like a human. Unfortunately people aren’t able to understand the creature until he meets Tim Goodman, played by Justice Smith (Jurassic World: The Fallen Kingdom).
The film centers around Tim’s quest to find his missing father and his reluctant acceptance of PIkachu’s help. Pikachu claims to be a great detective and tells Tim the only way he’ll be able to find his father is if they work together.
The trailer has been met with controversy by some critics. From the Pokémons’ looks, such as PIkachu being fuzzy, to Pikachu’s ability to talk — in Deadpool’s voice no less — the trailer has sparked Twitter threads and even a parody video with Danny DeVito voicing Pikachu. Despite the rants that have appeared, Pokémon fans appear excited about the new film.
Parody Trailer featuring Danny Devito
Detective Pikachu is set for a May 10, 2019 release date and will be distributed by Toho in Japan and Warner Brothers outside of Japan. Rob Letterman (Goosebumps) directed the film with Joseph M. Caracciolo and Tsunekazu Ishihara serving as executive producers.