Battle of the Planets To Rise Like a Phoenix

By James Robert Shaw (The Wind up Geek)

After success of the 2013 Gatchaman movie in Japan, Corus Entertainment’s animation arm Nelvana and marketing company d-rights Inc., will be working jointly on new series Battle of the Planets: Phoenix Ninjas (tentative title).

BOP: PN will be a re-envisioning of the original Battle of the Planets series produced by Sandy Frank Entertainment. In their press release, Corus Entertainment has said the series will have a distinct look and feel that will pay tribute to the classic series.

“We’re thrilled to be working with d-rights on a new version of Battle of the Planets, which has a devoted worldwide fan base,” said Andrew Kerr, Co-Head, Nelvana Enterprises. “This classic property has endured with fans and we are ready to reach out to a new generation of kids. The series will be new, but it will feature the same big action stories.”

Nelvana’s previous works include My Pet Monster and Stickin’ Around while D-rights has handled such global properties as B-Daman and Beast Saga (Battle Beasts in North American). And this isn’t the first time these companies have worked jointly on a project, both have previously handled the popular Beyblade licence.

In 1978 Sandy Frank brought Tatsunoko Productions’ Science Ninja Team Gatchaman to North American television as the re-titled Battle of the Planets. BOP followed the super hero fighting team G-Force — Mark, Jason, Princess, Tiny and Keyop. Guided from Center Neptune by their robotic sage 7-Zark-7, G-Force defended the Earth and its outposts from the planet Spectra lead by the evil masked Zoltar. G-Force’s ship, The Phoenix, had the ability to change into a flaming bird-shaped craft and overcome any attacks by acting as a fiery phoenix.

For this series Sandy Frank authorised animators to produce new footage for the series (7-Zark-7 segments were a Sandy Frank creation) and hired writers to add appropriate dialogue to the visuals. Some footage had to be cut out to satisfy the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The Gatchaman series contained too much foul language and scenes of violence to be allowed to air for North American children. Over all 85 episodes of the total 105 of Gatchaman were used for Battle of the Planets.


Video Source: YouTube, fermanagh76’s channel.

Author: James Robert Shaw

Making a comeback.

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