×

Ryan Reynolds’ ‘Detective Pikachu’ Moves From Universal to Warner Bros.

Legendary Entertainment’s live-action “Detective Pikachu” has moved from Universal to Warner Bros., which is keeping the May 10, 2019, release date.

The film, based on the Pokemon franchise, will star Ryan Reynolds, Justice Smith (“Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”), and Kathryn Newton (“Big Little Lies”). Rob Letterman will direct.

Warner Bros., which made the announcement Wednesday, will handle all distribution for “Detective Pikachu” outside Japan and China. Toho will distribute in Japan, as it has done in its partnership with Legendary on the blockbuster monster reboot “Godzilla.”

The story involves the father of Smith’s teenage character being kidnapped, forcing him to team up with Pikachu in order to find him. Newton will portray a journalist.

First introduced in Japan in 1996, Pokemon has seen nearly 300 million video games sold worldwide, 23 billion cards shipped to 74 countries, and an animated series spanning 20 seasons.

Legendary bought the movie rights in 2016, shortly after the Pokemon Go app game was released and became a worldwide phenomenon, so much so that it led to a 25% jump in the stock of part-owner Nintendo. The augmented reality game allows players to capture, battle, and train the Pokemon virtual creatures.

Popular on Variety

“Detective Pikachu” will open a week after Disney-Marvel’s still-untitled Avengers movie debuts. May 10 will also see debuts for MGM’s comedy “The Hustle,” starring Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson; and STX’s animated “Uglydolls” movie.

More Film

  • Premature

    'Premature': Film Review

    There’s poetry in “Premature” — literally, if not always cinematically. Zora Howard, a spoken word artist and sometime actor who reunites with director Rashaad Ernesto Green for his second feature (they collaborated more than a decade earlier on a short of the same name), plays Ayanna, a tentatively romantic Harlem teenager navigating a relationship for [...]

  • Jamila Wenske

    Berlin: Jamila Wenske's Achtung Panda! Producing 'Elbow,' 'Arabic Interpreter' (EXCLUSIVE)

    German producer Jamila Wenske of Berlin-based Achtung Panda! Media has boarded two upcoming projects that explore facets of the immigrant experience in Germany. Asli Özarslan’s “Elbow” follows the turbulent life of a young Turkish woman in Berlin and her decision to move to Istanbul, while Ali Kareem Obaid’s “The Arabic Interpreter” centers on a frustrated, [...]

  • Harvey Weinstein deliberation

    Weinstein Jury Ends Day With Request for Annabella Sciorra's Testimony, No Verdict

    The jurors in the Harvey Weinstein trial ended their third day of deliberations on Thursday with a request to hear the testimony of Annabella Sciorra. The jury has now been deliberating for more than 14 hours, and will return for further deliberations on Friday morning. In a note to the judge late Thursday afternoon, the [...]

  • Goldie Hawn Bette Midler Diane Keaton

    Goldie Hawn, Bette Midler and Diane Keaton Re-Team for 'Family Jewels' Comedy

    Goldie Hawn, Bette Midler and Diane Keaton are starring in the family comedy “Family Jewels” for New Republic Pictures. It’s a reunion for the trio, 24 years after they starred in the Paramount comedy “The First Wives Club.” New Republic is planning a 2020 production start for “Family Jewels.” New Republic principals Brian Oliver and [...]

  • EFM Euro Film Policy Seminar

    Berlin: European Film Policy Seminar Examines Changing Landscape

    The Berlinale’s European Film Market opened on Thursday with the inaugural European Film Politics Seminar, offering a look at the pressing challenges facing independent European producers in a fast-changing landscape increasingly dominated by the growing number of U.S. streaming giants. The seminar was hosted by Steven Gaydos, executive vice president of global content of Variety. [...]

  • Parasite

    'Parasite' to Get Digitally Re-Mastered Imax Release for One Week

    Imax is releasing a digitally re-mastered version of Bong Joon Ho’s “Parasite” for a one-week run at select Imax locations starting Friday. “Parasite” is the first non-English-language movie ever to win the Oscar for best picture. The South Korean film took in $5.7 million at 2,002 domestic locations during the post-Oscar weekend, lifting its cumulative [...]

  • My Salinger Year

    'My Salinger Year': Film Review

    A writer writes, but there’s no evidence that Joanna Rakoff can even type when she takes the job as an assistant working for literary agent Phyllis Westberg in “My Salinger Year.” Because Rakoff went on to pen a book-length memoir about her time working for Westberg, who represented reclusive writer J.D. Salinger, we can rest [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content