Cue the preview … “In a world far away, there was a large, white kitty rocking a red hairbow. Hello Kitty …” Yep, that Kitty will be debuting on the big screen sometime in 2019.
Deadline.com reports that Japanese lifestyle company Sanrio —purveyors of all things cute and utterly catastic — has a Hello Kitty film in the works with a budget of blockbuster proportions. In an effort to further claw its way into global markets, Sanrio established the U.S. subsidiary Sanrio Media & Pictures Entertainment, tapped to create the theatrical release.
According to Deadline.com, the movie’s budget is estimated at an impressive $160 million to upward of $240 million. To put that into perspective, the budget for 2015’s box office record-setter Jurassic World’s is purported to be $150 million and the budget for the forthcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens is said to be around $200 million (although you can double that if you throw in the soon-to-be-unleashed marketing campaign). With numbers like that, it sounds like Hello Kitty might hold her own with regard to special effects and star power.
No word yet on the plot line or whether the movie will get a live-action treatment, go the fully animated route or — like another cat-centric movie, Garfield, starring Bill Murray as the famous orange tabby — be a hybrid of both technologies. (Who would you cast as Kitty?) With such a big budget on the plate, it’s easy to envision an A-list cast, and given that Hello Kitty’s hometown is London, perhaps there will some mingling among royals.
Hello Kitty is no stranger to the small screen, with numerous animated series appearing on TV and video starting in 1987 and running up until 2006. There’s even a very catchy Hello Kitty theme song available in Japanese as well as in English (above).
On a side note, the all-female Japanese pop-punk band Shonen Knife seems destined for a spot on the Hello Kitty The Movie soundtrack. Not only are they the music behind the theme song for the popular animated TV series the PowerPuff Girls, they obviously already have an affinity for felines; check out their “Like A Cat” video, here.