Movie studios Warner Bros. Sony and Legendary are locked in a bidding war over the rights to bring a live-action Pokémon movie to the big screen.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Pokémon Company has held a private auction for the film based on the popular franchise that already spans a multitude of animated shows, films, video games and toys.
Warner Bros. was among the early favourites to secure the rights to a big-budget, live-action film having released the animated Pokémon: The First Movie in 1999 and two sequels.
However, various sources suggest that Legendary has now emerged as a potential victor to bring Pikachu and the other Pokémon characters to the big screen.
Amid simmering political tension between Beijing and Tokyo, China’s Legendary has already made inroads into Japan’s film industry, having brought Godzilla to life in 2014 in partnership with Warner Bros. and Japan’s Toho Co.
Legendary and Warner Bros. plan to release other movies in the franchise including Kong: Skull Island next year, Godzilla 2 in 2018 and Godzilla Vs. Kong.