Three years have passed since Alita: Battle Angel debuted in theaters, at what could be considered by some as the worst possible time. A project that developed under 20th Century Fox, only to become the final title the now-absorbed studio would release under its legacy name, this potential franchise lies dormant. As Robert Rodriguez, James Cameron and Rosa Salazar are still ready to kick ass with Alita: Battle Angel 2, it looks like it might once again be time to find another potential home for this franchise. Luckily, Netflix looks like it might be the next probable streaming home for this popular sci-fi flick.
Bringing Alita: Battle Angel back to streaming would be only the first step, as the movie is currently not widely available on a subscription service. What could come from this action of good faith is a bright and shining future, should Netflix want to take the opportunity to make it happen. Judging by what we’re about to discuss, it’s a sounder idea than most might think. Let’s get into why Alita deserves a new home at Netflix.
Disney Doesn’t Seem To Have Much Interest In Moving Forward With Alita
The last update Robert Rodriguez provided on Alita 2 and its potential future sounded pretty promising. Aiming to cook up a pitch for Disney that was contingent on The Book of Boba Fett’s successful debut, the man put a pretty big stake in the ground for his future ambitions. Unfortunately, we’ve heard nothing new since then, and that seems to indicate that either Rodriguez hasn’t made his pitch or Disney doesn’t seem to have much interest.
It wouldn’t be shocking if Disney’s not pushing for more Alita: Battle Angel content at the moment. Three years with no movement and a Tron follow-up getting more traction within the studio says quite a lot. As even Alita herself, Rosa Salazar, continues to want further exploration of Iron City, Zalem and all points surrounding, there’s clearly one side of the equation that’s more invested than the other. With that in mind, Disney should look into other parties interested in picking up the torch, and Netflix has made itself a pretty solid candidate.
Robert Rodriguez Already Has A Fruitful Relationship With Netflix
In 2020, Netflix scored a huge hit with the Robert Rodriguez original We Can Be Heroes. A We Can Be Heroes sequel was greenlit about a month after that that impressive debut, which served as the start of something great. While Rodriguez would still continue to work with Disney through The Book of Boba Fett, the opportunities from Netflix eventually became numerous and varied.
On top of the next We Can Be Heroes movie, Robert Rodriguez and Netflix also have the recently-announced the Spy Kids relaunch in development, as well as the more mature Ben Affleck movie Hypnotic. The wide range of the Rodriguez portfolio is covered by this particular platform already, making Netflix a perfect home for that potential Alita: Battle Angel 2 to thrive.
Netflix Might Allow Robert Rodriguez More Creative Freedom
Alita: Battle Angel saw decades of development under the now-defunct 20th Century Fox brand. Starting under James Cameron and moving to Robert Rodriguez’s steady hands, Alita embodies a different type of project from what you’d expect under the now-Disney-controlled 20th Century Studios. Think about it: do you think the current powers-that-be would have ever let the “Fuck your mercy” fight stay in the final cut unedited?
With the 20th Century Studios brand under Disney’s control, the universe of Alita creative decisions could presumably become more restrictive. If Robert Rodriguez were to move this project into his ongoing partnership with Netflix, the results stand to be more freeing. As the streaming platform already trusts Robert Rodriguez with his own visions, both for kids and adults, this middle ground project could push the envelope to wherever it reasonably sees fit.
The Alita Franchise Is A Fantastic Fit For A Platform With A Strong Anime Catalog
It also helps that Netflix has a pretty strong anime catalog on its platform, with numerous hit series holding down the attention of many genre fans. While Alita: Battle Angel isn’t currently an anime, it was once adapted into that very format in the past. Besides the prospect of the Alita film series of setting up shop at Netflix, the original Battle Angel OVA could also be a title that further strengthens the streaming service's bond to Alita.
This is also a fantastic way for Alita: Battle Angel to branch out into a fully-realized universe. Anime series and spinoffs can fill in the finer details of the universe, such as Alita’s rise through the ranks of Motorball in the time-lapse that ended the movie. Films and series coexisting would more than make up for the time lost in past years, and there’s plenty of author Yukito Kishiro’s work to work with on such endeavors.
It Wouldn’t Be The First Time Netflix Lent A Hand To A Potential Franchise
Netflix is ultimately the perfect fit for an Alita resurgence because it’s not the first time that this studio has given a struggling franchise a shot. The best example is in the anime Pacific Rim: The Black, which is wrapping its run with Season 2’s debut this month. Guillermo del Toro’s scrappy Kaiju adventure was lucky to get that second theatrical sequel and other tie-ins along the way; but if it wasn’t for Netflix, Pacific Rim: Uprising would have been the end.
Just as Pacific Rim: The Black tied into the movies, there’s a prime chance for Netflix to work that magic again. Alita: Battle Angel continues to be a movie that continues to inspire fans to demand more content in that universe. Anyone who heeds that call could have a hit saga on their hands, with the big red streamer feeling like the most logical and friendly home. Until any sort of movement is made, fans in the Alita Army will have to continue making their voices heard, with ideas of how and where things should progress firmly in mind.
CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.
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