Live-Action Voltron Movie: All We Know

A live-action Voltron movie is coming with Rawson Marshall Thurber on as director. There is no official timeline for the release.

By Doug Norrie

voltron movie

A live-action Voltron movie? Yes, please. See, these days, with the streaming wars in full go-mode and studios scrambling over themselves to house more and more content, it makes total sense that we would rehash some fan-favorite stories and characters from the past. Did they need to be iconic in nature? Of course not.

If there was even a window of popularity for something in the past (in this case, the 1980s) then it feels like almost a certainty that we would get a chance to see it comes back in some form for a current adaptation. And that’s going to be the case with a live-action Voltron movie which is currently in development.

While still a bit early on in the process, we do have some idea about how this could take shape over the next few years. Let’s dive into what we know about the live-action Voltron movie and what’s in store for this character.

Rawson Marshall Thurber Is Directing The Live-Action Voltron Movie

rawson marshall thurber central intelligence

According to The Hollywood Reporter, a bidding war recently ramped up among a number of different studios that included Netflix, Universal, Warner Bros., and Amazon Studios to have the pleasure of bringing a Voltron movie to the big screen.

One of the reasons so many houses were clamoring for the opportunity was because Rawson Marshall Thurber has already come attached and would be directing as well as handling the script.

He’s done a number of big-budget crowdpleasers with the most recent being Red Notice on Netflix. Starring Dwayne Johnson, Ryan Reynolds, and Gal Gadot, the movie became the most-watched original movie on the streamer through its first 28-day release window. There is already a sequel in the works. 

And that wasn’t the first time that Rawson Marshall Thurber had worked with Dwayne Johnson either. The former helmed Skyscraper as well as Central Intelligence with The Rock on those. And he’s done some movies in the comedic vein as well, an area of strength for the director who’s also helmed We’re the Millers and Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story before that. 

Amazon Studios Wins Bidding War For Voltron Live-Action Movie

Once Thurber got involved with a possible live-action Voltron movie, a bidding way ensued. Ultimately, it was Amazon Studios that took home the prize. With Thurber already on board, he is joined by Todd Lieberman, David Hoberman, and Bob Koplar as producers, and Ellen Shanman to help Thurber co-write the script.

Voltron Started As A 1980s Cartoon Character

voltron movie

The live-action Voltron movie will be based on the character of the name which first originated on the small screen in the 1980s as a Saturday morning kids cartoon. It was originally based on the Japanese anime series Beast King Go-Lion though that was shifted into the Voltron series once it got English dubbing.

The central idea is that the galaxy is now an interconnected place with the legend of Voltron, a mighty defender of all living things, emerging as a pathway to peace for a number of different races. But the character is very much a mystery until a group of alliance fighters is sent to the deep reaches of space to find Voltron. 

When threatened by some evil forces in the universe, these fighters who each operate robotic lions as their primary transportation and weapon system are tasked with fighting off King Zarkon and Prince Lotor. When the lions, each represented by a color (Black, Red, Green, Blue, and Yellow) combine they can complete a representation of Lion Voltron, a more formidable force to fight off enemies. It’s a classic, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts, situation. 

This new form of Voltron (once a mecha in its own right) has some pretty crazy powers, though easily its best weapon is the Blazing Sword that “he” can break out by hitting his hands together once formed. You can see some of what I mean by this in the most recent Netflix version of the character in Voltron: Legendary Defender which was released a few years ago. 

A Voltron Movie Was Planned In 2007

The idea of a Voltron movie has been kicking around in Hollywood for almost two decades now, though no one has come all that close to pulling it off. That’s because for a while Relativity Media was on board to distribute the planned film which had started to gain some steam around 2007 and 2008.

The plan was for it to be Voltron: Defender of the Universe and was going to set itself on Earth in the future following an alien attack. The other story mechanics around the robotic lions forming Voltron were going to stay in place. But Relativity filed for bankruptcy and the rights reverted, eventually landing with DreamWorks and then NBCUniversal back in 2016. But it’s been quiet on the Voltron front, until now. 

A Voltron Series Was On Netflix


Again, though this title has been kicking around since the mid-80s, we’ve had other animated adaptations along the way. Most recently, it was the above Netflix offering which lasted eight seasons on the streamer from just 2016 to 2018.

These were shorter offerings, just a few episodes each, which is why they were released in such quick succession. It received near-unanimous critical praise, scoring an average of 95% on Rotten Tomatoes throughout its run.

Critics thought the show not only paid due homage to the original, something that would play with longtime fans of the franchise. But there was also praise for the visuals and storylines developed throughout. 

There Is No Official Timeline For The Live-Action Voltron Movie

Although the bidding war is complete, there is still no official word when fans of Voltron can expect the live-action film to hit the streaming service. Rawson Thurber Marshall, who also is an actor, has a very full plate as of this moment.

He is presently in production on a Red Notice sequel and is in pre-production with two other projects, one being a feature based on the Tom Clancy role-playing video game, The Division. He is also attached to a We’re the Millers sequel.