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Pokémon Live-Action Show in the Works at Netflix

Netflix is continuing its path forward into live-action adaptations with a new Pokémon show, according to Variety. This new take on the worldwide phenomenon is reportedly in early development, so no plot details are currently available. However, Joe Henderson, who is wrapping up his time as co-showrunner and executive producer on Netflix’s Lucifer, will write and produce the live-action Pokémon series.

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Expect the Netflix adaptation to be similar to the live-action Detective Pikachu movie from 2019. That film gave fans more realistic, computer-generated depictions of the monsters that have overrun pop culture for the last few decades, with Justice Smith starring as the lead and Ryan Reynolds lending his voice as a talking Pikachu.

Netflix’s move to create a live-action Pokémon show might come as a surprise, though the streamer has been actively involving itself in similar spaces for the last few years. For example, the company handled the domestic release of the entirely CGI remake Pokémon: Mewtwo Strikes Back – Evolution last year and later inked a deal that saw the English version of Pokémon Journeys: The Series streaming exclusively on its platform. Toward that end, Master Journeys premieres in September.

Meanwhile, Netflix is working on more live-action adaptations, including a Resident Evil show, a Cowboy Bebop series, and a Gundam movie. Live-action Pokémon also fits into a larger push by Netflix to carve out a niche for video game adaptations to maintain distinct offerings compared to competitors like Disney+.


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Michael Cripe
Michael joined The Escapist team in 2019 but has been covering games, movies, TV, and music since 2015. When he’s not writing, Michael is probably playing Super Mario Sunshine, Dead Space, The Binding of Isaac, or Doom Eternal. You can follow his news coverage and reviews at The Escapist, but his work has appeared on other sites like OnlySP, Gameranx, and Kansas City’s The Pitch, too. If you’d like to connect and talk about the latest pop-culture news, you can follow Michael on Twitter (@MikeCripe), Instagram (mike_cripe), or LinkedIn if that’s your thing.