A day and a half earlier than I expected, Tsuburaya finally answers my question of "what the heck has everyone been working on??"
Item The First: As expected, there will be a new Mebi Gaiden OVA, Ultraman Moebius Gaiden: Ghost Rebirth. The story line will be roughly based on the Terebi-kun manga of the same name. No information on cast or crew yet.
First DVD comes out 11/22, second part one month later on 12/22. I will be in Japan when the first one is released if anyone would like me to pick up copies and avoid the shipping from Japan fee. (This also means I will not be watching it until 12/6, when I return to the States. Our hotel not having a Japanese DVD player and my laptop's DVD player not being hacked. I'd say thank you all for no spoilers, but I also won't have internet access for all but two days of that time, so I don't expect it will be an issue.)
The story has to do with monsters in the Monster Graveyard coming back to life. This is why I've chosen to go with "Ghost Rebirth" for the title, for all that "Ghost Reverse" is just as plausible. I'm sticking with my version until corrected otherwise by an official source. (And, depending on how dorktastic what the official source comes up with, I may stick with mine anyway.
Item The Second: A new Ultraman movie, entitled Daikaijuu Batle Ultra Galaxy Legend, to be released by Warner Pictures on 12/12/2009. This is wholly made in Japan, by Japanese cast and crew. The director is Sakamoto Kouichi, of Power Rangers fame, including the currently running Power Rangers RPM. (Yes, the US version, not the original sentai series'.)
Plot of the movie is roughly based on the Uchiyama Mamoru manga The Ultraman, and is as follows: Tens of thousands of years ago, Ultraman Belial had his soul munched and turned evil. He was eventually incarcerated in space prison by Ultraman King, but now he's returned. He's been given the uber-powerful Giga Battlenizer by the Rayblood, which allows him to store a hundred monsters. Now Rei will team up with Ultraman Moebius to defeat this evil. As the movie poster shows, at least Ultraman and Ultra Seven (seriously, who thought he needed a cloak??) will be making an appearance as well.
There are rumors that it might be in 3D. I know the special edition of the 8 Ultra Brothers movie had a section done in 3D so this may not be a mere pipe dream on someone's part.
There are also some rumors that Kurobe Susumu and Moritsugu Kouji will be in it. These also seem credible, but are currently unconfirmed.
(Additional information can be found and and here.
Ha. I may not be able to write fanfic that happens to accidentally get invalidated when the series goes there in its own special way. But I *can* track blogs and credits to accurately tell when Tsuburaya's up to something. Data analysis: my secret super power. I expect Hasegawa Keiichi will be doing the screenplay for Ghost Rebirth, and that at least Hirata Misato will be in it. Igarashi Shunji obviously has to at least voice Moebius in both productions, thus neatly explaining the gaps I was seeing in his busy schedule. (His schedule gaps plus Hasegawa Keiichi's abruptly vanishing from any productions were major contributing factors to my pacing around the last couple of months wondering if Tsuburaya was up to another Mebi something.)
Well, I figured sooner or later Moebius was going to show up in Ultra Galaxy. This time can he at least not spend the entire time stuck in a rock, or trapped in evil armor -- and not get turned into a statue either, please??
12/12 -- seriously guys. Did you *have* to schedule it for six days after I leave? Feh. Seriously, guys. Dec. 1 would have been a vastly superior day for a release. I would take the 5th. But the 12th? ... *sigh*
(Yes, I am doing the math to see how reasonable it would be to shift the trip one week later. Though I'm pretty sure the answer will end up being "are you feckin' nuts?")
And following on the last comment... You may redeem yourself, Tsuburaya, by having it come soon to a theater near me. Yes, I mean near me. No getting on a plane and flying for far too many hours to see it. A theater here in the good old U. S. of A. No, I'm not on drugs. No, the sky in my world is not pink with little fairies flitting through it. I think we're getting a US run for this movie. Here's my thinking:
Tsuburaya usually works with Toho as the distribution company. I suspect strongly (and internet rumor supports) that Warner is releasing this one as part of a worldwide release. After reading the initial rumors about Warner being involved I did some digging. Warner doesn't do a lot of releasing movies in Japan. Most of the Japanese-made films released by Warner got a US theatrical run. (The live action Death Note movie being the most recent example.)
Six months is such a short time to get all hyped about the movie, compared with the year's build-up on the last one. They've filmed most of it already now! I don't get to sit through an entire month scouring the web for illicit photos taken on location. Ah well.