The upcoming Detective Pikachu movie from Nintendo and Universal has cast Ken Watanabe in a role. He’ll star alongside Ryan Reynolds as the titular character, as well as Kathryn Newton (Big Little Lies, Lady Bird) and Justice Smith (Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Netflix’s The Get Down). The film will be directed by Rob Letterman (Goosebumps) from a script by Gravity Falls creator Alex Hirsch and Captain Marvel writer Nicole Perlman, who also penned the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie. The film comes from an original story by Tomokazu Ohara and Haruka Utsui, who wrote the 2016 Great Detective Pikachu video game that was released on the Nintendo 3DS.
According to a synopsis of the original game:
The game follows a peculiar talking Pikachu who, despite not being as powerful and nimble as other Pikachu of his kind, is rather intelligent and claims to be a great detective. One day, Pikachu encounters a boy named Tim Goodman, who is able to understand what he is saying. Thus, the two begin working together to solve various mysteries revolving around Pokémon in the city.
Smith will be playing Tim Goodman in the upcoming film, while Ken Watanabe will be playing a fellow investigator named Detective Yoshida, a character created specifically for the film. Obviously, Pikachu will talk in the upcoming film, which has already proven to be an issue with fans. When last year’s Pokémon: I Choose You! was released in North America, audiences were horrified to learn that Pikachu speaks a line of English at the end of the film. Although the line could potentially be viewed as part of a dream sequence, fans were not happy to see one of their favorite characters suddenly speak English after decades of relative silence.
Hi, I am just learning that Pikachu speaks English in the new Pokemon movie and, yes, it is extremely fucking weird pic.twitter.com/k5hm5lyW7Y
— Ryan Broderick (@broderick) November 13, 2017
Then again, since Detective Pikachu isn’t Ash’s Pikachu, it might get a pass from fans. In addition to Detective Pikachu, Ryan Reynolds has also signed a three-year first-look deal with Fox, the company that produced both of his Deadpool films. His first project with the new deal? A new adaptation of Clue. Reynolds will be reuniting with screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick for a fourth time on the new film, the first adaptation since the 1985 version starring Tim Curry. Following his collaborations on the two Deadpool movies, as well as last year’s Life, Reynolds has found two writers who know how to play to his strengths, equipping him with roles worthy of his erratic charm.
An article in The Hollywood Reporter brings up a really good point about the deal, writing: “The move is noteworthy as it keeps the actor in the Fox playground well into the merger, which is expected to take about a year to wrap up, provided regulatory hurdles are overcome. Reynolds scored the biggest hit of his career with Deadpool, featuring the saucy and racy Marvel anti-hero, and he (along with many observers) have wondered how the character would fit into the cleaner Marvel universe movies that Disney releases.”
As a producer, Reynolds will have more of a say in how his character is used after this merger is complete. It’s been reported that Marvel Studios has no intention of screwing with Fox’s R-rated Marvel movies, but that could change at any time. Reynolds is positioning himself to be making decisions in the months to come, especially after how long he fought to get Deadpool on the big screen in the first place. As the X-Men universe expands, it’s important that Reynolds is able to maintain the character in a way he sees fit, especially if the X-Men are drafted into the MCU.
Detective Pikachu is due out on May 10th, 2019.
Images: Nintendo, Legendary, Fox
Source: The Hollywood Reporter