Macross Legal Battles are over; This is what it means for the future

The influential anime is finally about to fly again.

Macross cover social feature

The very popular and influential anime and film series Macross is finally officially published worldwide for the first time and resolves decades of legal disputes. You can see the influence of Macross or its American remake Robotech, in all of Star Wars rebels to Godzilla versus Kongand now fans can finally experience the original franchise.

A press release announced earlier this week that advertising conglomerate Big West and American company Harmony Gold had finally reached an agreement that would “allow most macross films and TV sequences to be distributed around the world immediately,” but does not specify exactly what titles will be be available or where. Another important part of the announcement is the fact that “Big West will not oppose the Japanese release of an expected upcoming live-action Robotech film,” which presumably refers to the long-rumored live-action film that Sony is making developed for years.

Robotech Image Social Feature

Image via Harmony Gold USA, Tatsunoko

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By the 1980s, it was common practice to take popular Japanese series and heavily edit them to accommodate Western audiences. Shows like Voltron, or Captain Harlock and the Queen of a Thousand Yearscombined unrelated shows and edited them together to form a quasi-coherent narrative. When the time came to do the same with the popular anime franchise Superdimension Fortress Macross, it was combined with the completely independent (but somehow similar sounding) Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross and Genesis Climber Mospeada. The result was the hugely popular Robotech.

Unfortunately, when Harmony Gold licensed the original Macross for its Frankenstein Monster, they thought they had just licensed all future Macross titles, while Big West, animation studio Nue, and anime studio Tatsunoko Production disagreed on who exactly they were Rights to what belonged. Although there have been several macross films and TV shows since the 1980s, none of them made their way to the US due to litigation.

This is without a doubt the biggest anime licensing news since Netflix Neon Genesis Evangelion to his library last year (to some criticism). The original show was a giant space opera that focused on a love triangle, turned fighter planes, and featured lots of J-pop songs. It was a cool and hip version of Gundam mobile suit, but with aliens, and soon you can finally experience it all.

No release date has been confirmed for these macross titles. So stay tuned to Collider as we confirm this information.

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About the author

Rafael Motamayor
(79 articles published)

Rafael Motamayor is an entertainment writer and reviewer for sites like Collider, Observer, Rotten Tomatoes, / Film, IGN, and more. He specializes in writing about horror and animation and longs for the day when a good animated horror project comes along so he can combine the two.

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