It looks like the first ever live-action Pokemon movie, Detective Pikachu, has found its lead in Justice Smith. Smith is having himself quite a year. After being personally chosen by director Baz Luhrmann for the lavish, 1970s era series about the rise of Hip Hop in New York, the young actor landed on his feet when Netflix chose not to renew The Get Down for a second season. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom director J.A. Bayona recognized Smith’s talent and quickly snapped him up for a lead in that film.
As for the Pokemon movie, Legendary is charging ahead with plans to get it to the big screen. Rob Letterman is already on board to direct, and Alex Hirsch and Nicole Perlman have been tapped to write the script with the latter best known for her role in penning the Guardians of the Galaxy script. As with all of Legendary’s movies, Universal will be the studio responsible for distributing it.
Its being reported that the up-and-coming actor from The Get Down has landed the starring role for Detective Pikachu. Earlier it was rumored that Dwayne Johnson was being eyeballed by Legendary to voice the titular character, though other names also being thrown about included Ryan Reynolds, Hugh Jackman, and Mark Wahlberg, so the studio is clearly confident about this film enough to swing big. And it should be confident. With Pokemon’s enormous global fanbase and the fervent love it holds for the brand, Detective Pikachu could very well be a monster box office success for Legendary, particularly overseas. With filming for Detective Pikachu scheduled to start in January of 2018, we can expect a few more casting announcements heading our way soon.