Our favorite manga PI and sniper Ryo Saeba, aka City Hunter, will be coming to the big screen in 2019 from France!
Long-time manga fans who feel nostalgic about the “Golden Age” of Weekly Shonen Jump magazine, roughly considered to span from the early 1980s to the first half of the 1990s, and during which a truly impressive list of manga classics like Dragon Ball, Saint Seiya, Fist of the North Star, Captain Tsubasa, Slam Dunk and Rurouni Kenshin were serialized in the magazine, should be thrilled to hear that City Hunter, another hit manga that contributed to the magazine’s Golden Age, is being turned into a live-action movie. And it’s being made in France, so hopefully we can expect some French twists with plenty of esprit!
French actor, director and writer Philippe Lacheau recently made the announcement in an Instagram post with a picture of the script.
Les amis, je suis très fier de vous annoncer mon prochain film !(avec les copains bien sûr) Joie immense d'adapter et réaliser au cinéma le dessin animé de mon enfance Nicky Larson ! C'est un rêve de gosse qui se réalise. Nous allons tout faire pour ne pas décevoir toute la génération Club Dorothée qui ont connu Nicky Larson et faire découvrir aux autres générations ce détective hors du commun, à la fois drôle et brillant. Nous sommes en pleine écriture, tournage l'année prochaine 🎉 #hatehatehate 😘
Lacheau, who has directed and starred in the films Babysitting and Alibai.com, commented on how proud he is to be adapting the anime he watched as a child into a film. The City Hunter franchise is known as Nicky Larson in France, and over 140 episodes of the anime was broadcast in the country in the early 1990s.
▼ Lacheau was apparently so excited that he posted a picture of all these City Hunter volumes! The City Hunter manga began more than thirty years ago, but Tsukasa Hojo’s artwork is still stunning.
The City Hunter series chronicles the adventures and (often sexually inappropriate yet funny) wild antics of private investigator, trouble fixer and sniper extraordinaire for hire, Ryo Saeba. Both the manga, which appeared in Weekly Shonen Jump from 1985 to 1991 (and later got a part sequel/part remake titled Angel Heart and Angel Heart 2nd Season), and the TV anime, which aired in Japan from 1987 to 1991, still have a strong following in Japan, as Ryo continues to be regarded by manga fans as a flawed yet strong and deeply attractive hero. Yes, that means expectations will be high for the upcoming live-action film.
The City Hunter anime is also loved for its excellent soundtrack, which includes the huge hit “Get Wild” by TM Network, and fans to this day feel that the stylish song, which began playing as each anime episode drew to a close, was a significant part of the anime version’s appeal.
This actually isn’t the first time the franchise has gotten a foreign adaptation. Fans of the series may recall that Hong Kong star Jackie Chan starred in a 1993 live-action film by the same title (albeit very loosely based on the original), and there was also a live-action TV drama made in Korea which aired over 20 episodes in 2011. A feature-length live action film is also currently being produced in China for release in 2018.
According to the announcements, Lacheau’s movie is scheduled to begin filming next year and slated for release on February 6, 2019. Lacheau is apparently also starring in the film as the titular character, so we’ll be looking forward to seeing how he plays the formidable investigator with a weakness for beautiful women.
For now, though, we have to say we’re experiencing a very strong urge to binge read through the City Hunter comics, as it will be a bit of a wait until the movie comes out!