After years of rumors and speculation, the Astroboy reboot finally appears to be happening as Thomas Astruc, the creator of Miraculous – Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir, is set to reboot the beloved manga series.
As reported by Variety, Method Animation, the Mediawan Kids & Family banner behind Miraculous and The Little Prince, is joining forces with Shibuya to produce the new series. Astruc will direct the series, which will include 52 half-hour episodes.
Based on the best-selling Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Osamu Tezuka, Astroboy was first adapted for TV in 1963, becoming a hit worldwide, including in the U.S., where it was the first anime series to air. The futuristic series is set in a world where robots and humans co-exist and follows the adventures of Astro Boy, a powerful android created by the head of the Ministry of Science, Doctor Tenma.
According to Variety, the new series promises to be timelier than ever, focusing on today’s hot-button issues, including the impact of the Internet, social media, and the damages caused to the environment by humans.
“Tezuka’s original comics were far advanced in delivering a powerful message to the readers worldwide,” said Mediawan and Shibuya (via Variety). “These fantastic stories of the little boy who flies are all about strong values that still resonates today for a global audience.”
Astruc added that he has “no words to describe how much Tezuka has influenced (his) life and (his) work.” He continued, “Astroboy is a cult series that has overseen the future like no other property. In the strange world we live in today, everybody needs Astroboy to come back!”
Astroboy has previously been adapted into three anime series, several live-action movies, and a computer-animated film. The popularity of the franchise has led to video games, soundtracks, action figures, food products, clothing, and trading cards. By 2004, the franchise had generated $3 billion in merchandise sales.