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Lionsgate Sets Power Rangers Movie as Franchise Starter

Lionsgate and Saban Brands are partnering to develop and produce a live-action movie based on Saban’s Power Rangers property as the first film in a franchise.

The movie deal was announced by  Haim Saban and Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer.

Saban launched “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” in 1993 as a live-action TV series. It  has been in continuous production ever since, with the series renamed each year — the latest being “Power Rangers Super Megaforce,” which began airing in February.

The new film franchise is aimed at re-envisioning the Rangers, a group of teenagers chosen to protect the world from a group of alien invaders. The Rangers have the ability to “morph” into superheroes and pilot giant robots.

The Power Rangers movie announcement came a day after media mogul Saban unveiled Saban Films as a North American distribution operation that will acquire and distribute eight to 10 movies a year.

“Lionsgate is the perfect home for elevating our Power Rangers brand to the next level,” said Saban in a statement. “They have the vision, marketing prowess and incredible track record in launching breakthrough hits from ‘The Hunger Games’ to ‘Twilight’ and ‘Divergent.'”

“We’re thrilled to be partnering with Haim Saban and his team to maximize the potential of this immensely successful and universally recognized franchise,” said Feltheimer. “The Power Rangers stories and characters have been embraced by generations of audiences for more than 20 years, and today they are more powerful than ever.”

Saban produced “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie” in 1995 with TV cast members Amy Jo Johnson, David Yost, Johnny Yong Bosch, Karen Ashley, Steve Cardenas and Jason David Frank. The film was released by Fox and grossed $66 million worldwide.

Saban also produced 1997’s “Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie” as a bridge between the “Power Rangers Zeo” and “Power Rangers Turbo” TV seasons. Fox also handled the release of the second film, which grossed only $9 million worldwide.

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