Imagi Animation Studios, the folks behind the computer animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film, TMNT, earlier this year, have released teaser poster and the first still from their upcoming adaptation of the classic anime series Astro Boy.
Set in a future where robots are commonplace, Astro Boy is an atomic powered robot built by a scientist to replace his own son who was killed in a car accident. Astro Boy started life as a manga in 1951 by Osamu Tezuka before being adapted into cartoon form in 1963. It was later broadcast Stateside on NBC, becoming the first Japanese cartoon to air outside of Japan.
Heading up the project is animation director Jakob Jensen, formerly of Dreamworks Animation. In a weekend interview with the Hollywood Reporter, he explained that although he was unfamiliar with the character when first approached, he was captivated by the Pinocchio-like story.
I was intrigued with the possibility of the project. I’m in the process of educating myself about the Astro Boy universe, and I love what I see. Astro Boy utilizes very classical story principles of the hero’s journey that we see in all good storytelling around the world… Astro Boy has the moral underpinning and strong emotional resonance that a lot of animation today is lacking.
Astro Boy should be hitting theaters in 2009.