Ever since word first broke that Disney was looking to acquire Marvel Studios, fans started speculating about which Marvel property would inevitably be turned into an animated film by the Mouse House. With Pixar also under Disney’s distribution banner, the excitement over a possible Pixar-led Marvel film was almost palpable. Just a few weeks ago, Pixar and Disney Animation head John Lasseter went so far as to say he “wouldn’t be opposed” to Pixar and Marvel teaming up on a property, but now it looks like the first animated Marvel film to come out of the Mouse House may be from Disney Animation. The studio is apparently in development on an animated iteration of the comic series Big Hero 6. Hit the jump for more.
News of Walt Disney Animation’s Big Hero 6 movie was broken by The Grid and further corroborated by Blue Sky Disney. The title is a bit obscure, but Big Hero 6 first appeared in Marvel Comics in 1998. As my knowledge of the property is essentially non-existent, let’s go to the trusty Wikipedia for a rundown:
When the Japanese government wanted a team of state-sanctioned super-heroes at their disposal, a top-secret consortium of politicians and business entities known as the Giri was formed to recruit and train potential superhuman operatives for “Big Hero 6.” Despite reservations by some members of the Giri, Silver Samurai, a freelance ronin and former bodyguard of the terrorist Viper, was appointed as field commander. Secret agent Honey Lemon, inventor of the nanotechnology-based Power Purse from which she could access any object, also agreed to join the team. The tough-talking GoGo Tomago, able to transubstantiate her body into a fiery force blast by uttering her code-name, was released from prison on the condition that she serve on the team. The Machiavellian bureaucrat known only as Mr. Oshima was appointed as the Giri’s spokesperson and coordinated Big Hero 6′s activities.
The other members of the Big Hero 6 team include Hiro Takachiho, a 13-year-old boy genius who is an expert at creating new technological wonders, Baymax, a synthetic entity created by Hiro who has the ability to morph into a dragon-like creature, and Wasabi-No-Ginger, a trained chef with a penchant for sword fighting.
Don Hall (Winnie the Pooh) is reportedly onboard to direct Big Hero 6, with Kristina Reed producing. A script has yet to be written, and the film hasn’t officially gotten the greenlight. Currently in the storyboard phase, the project has apparently been “deemed strong enough” to be put in the production line for the time being. Again, Disney hasn’t confirmed any of this so it’s possible that some or all of the details are inaccurate. That said, Blue Sky Disney has the filmed pegged for a 2014 release, which makes that a possible big year for Marvel alongside Captain America 2 and probably Guardians of the Galaxy.
[Update: Dave here. EW reports that Disney reps have confirmed to them that Big Hero 6 is indeed in early stages of development, but have not divulged who is working on the project.]