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We’re still a year and a half away from the gritty (yet hopefully silly) Power Rangers reboot movie. Having said that, there is still a lot happening as the film moves forward. Some information about the script has come out and we now know who the movie’s "big bad" is going to be. Fittingly for the first film in an expected franchise, they’re going back to the first big villain from the TV series, Rita Repulsa.
Heroic Hollywood has the story revealing Rita as the villain according to multiple sources. Fans of the original 3 seasons of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers will remember Rita as the primary antagonist for the show. In the series' first episode, she is released from a space dumpster after 10,000 years of imprisonment and begins to attempt to take over the earth. This leads the wise sage Zordon to call on five teenagers to become the Power Rangers to fight her off.
Interestingly, it appears we may see the battle that led to Rita being locked up in the opening of the new movie. The word is that the first scene of the movie will take place during the cretaceous period (ok, so apparently we’re talking millions of years locked away, not thousands) with Rita fighting that era’s Power Rangers. This team will include the character of Zordon as the cretaceous red ranger. The description also contains her using magic to create soldier's out of the earth itself, reminiscent of the Putty Patroller foot soldiers from the original series.
In the show's 22 year (and counting) run, it had plenty of villains to choose from, but going back to the beginning is probably the best move. If you were a 10-year-old kid when the show first aired, you’re in your early 30’s now -- possibly with kids of your own who watched later seasons of the show. By going back to the earliest era, the film can cash in on mom and dad’s nostalgia dollar, and the kids will come along for the ride. The wide range of fans may be the key to having a summer blockbuster type success in January.
It was reported yesterday that the movie was looking to cast unknown actors as the rangers themselves. The role of Rita might be a place to put an established actress if they are looking to bring in some star power someplace else. While Rita was a maniacal, cartoonish (like everything else) villain in the original series, the description of her for the film fits with the more mature but playful take the film supposedly has, calling her a huntress with a soldier’s confidence.
Who would you like to see play Rita Repulsa in the Power Ranger movie?