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Ryan Reynolds to play Pikachu in a live-action Pokémon movie

We don't know why this is a thing, but sure.


Gavia Baker-Whitelaw

Internet Culture

Posted on Dec 7, 2017   Updated on May 22, 2021, 8:47 am CDT

Ryan Reynolds will play Pikachu in the upcoming Detective Pikachu movie, one of the most inexplicable adaptations in recent memory.

The live-action movie is inspired by the Pokémon game Great Detective Pikachu, a mystery adventure about a boy and a crime-solving Pikachu in the big city. The key difference between this Pikachu and the normal version is that unlike most pokémon, he doesn’t just repeat his own name in a cute anime voice. He talks like a regular adult man, as seen in this Sherlock-esque teaser for the game:

The film will also star Justice Smith (Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom) and Kathryn Newton (Big Little Lies), and will be directed by Rob Letterman (Goosebumps). The plot revolves around a search for Justice Smith’s missing dad, as the teen asks Detective Pikachu for help. Kathryn Newton will play what The Hollywood Reporter describes as a “sassy journalist,” which is code for female journalist.

Ryan Reynolds will film the role in motion capture, meaning he’s going to have to learn some Pikachu body-language.

Even with the main cast in place, it’s still hard to believe this film is actually happening. Following the massive success of Pokémon Go, it’s no surprise that Hollywood wants to capitalize on Pokémon’s popularity. But a crime drama starring Ryan Reynolds as Pikachu, rather than the fantasy adventures we saw in the games and animated series? Who decided this was the way to go?

H/T the Hollywood Reporter

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*First Published: Dec 7, 2017, 7:09 am CST