Earlier today, the official Twitter account for Sunrise’s long-delayed feature, Mobile Suit Gundam Hathaway’s Flash, announced the film will be released to theaters June 11, 2021. This announcement comes amid the Japanese government steadily easing its state of emergency restrictions for theaters and amusement facilities for the Tokyo and Osaka prefectures.
Deadline reports, the Motion Picture Producers Association of Japan urged lawmakers to approve the resumption of business operations beginning June 1 “on the premise that we will take all possible measures against infectious diseases,” and making note that there are “no clusters in movie theaters.” The letter was signed by the heads of major film companies Toho, Shochiku, Toei and Kadokawa. They also requested that national and local governments “expand and provide cooperation money” in light of the damage done by COVID-19 to the industry and also “to give some consideration to movie distribution companies.”
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government will allow cinemas to operate at 50% capacity, until 9PM. Osaka Prefecture will likewise be permitted to open, though only on weekdays until 9PM, with a similar capacity.
The Hathaway film was initially set to release July 2020, but has been plagued by the turbulent COVID-19 surges in Japan resulting in multiple delays for the film’s release.
First in a trilogy of anime films helmed by Shukou Murase, Mobile Suit Gundam Hathaway’s Flash or Hathaway is the official sequel to the 1988 Mobile Suit Gundam Char’s Counterattack movie. The film project serves as the second entry in Sunrise’s U.C. NexT 0100 Project following Mobile Suit Gundam Narrative. The project was announced in November 2018 to celebrate the Gundam 40th anniversary, adapting the Yoshiyuki Tomino-penned novel series of the same name. The novels were originally released from 1989 to 1990, as a follow-up to Tomino’s Char’s Counterattack: Beltorchika’s Children novel, published by Kadokawa’s Kadokawa Sneaker Bunko imprint.
The year is U.C. 0105. Twelve years have passed since the end of the second Neo Zeon War (Char’s Rebellion). Even after “the Axis Shock,” which seemed to indicate the future of humanity and the Universal Century, the world is still in a chaotic situation where intermittent military conflicts continue to break out. The Earth Federation government is more corrupt than ever, and its leadership has not only accelerated Earth’s pollution, but also implemented an inhuman “Man Hunting” policy in which civilians are forcibly exiled to outer space.
The anti-Federation government organization “Mafty,” led by someone called “Mafty Navue Erin,” has taken a stand against the corruption of the Earth Sphere. Mafty carries out fierce acts of terrorism, assassinating high officials of the Federation government one after another, but it gains a certain level of support from the populace who are growing more opposed to the Federation government.
The person who calls himself “Mafty” and leads this organization is Hathaway Noa, the son of Bright Noa, an officer of the Earth Federation Forces who once participated in the One Year War. Hathaway himself joined the forces trying to stop Char’s Rebellion. With firsthand knowledge of the ideals and ideologies of Amuro Ray and Char Aznable, he has become a warrior following in their footsteps, and plans to clear a path forward through armed resistance. His destiny, however, is drastically altered as he encounters the Federation Forces officer Kenneth Sleg and a mysterious young beauty named Gigi Andalucia.
- Kensho Ono as Hathaway Noa
- Junichi Suwabe as Kenneth Sleg
- Reina Ueda as Gigi Andalucia
- Soma Saito as Lane Aime
- Toru Furuya as Amuro Ray
- Kenjiro Tsuda as Gawman Nobile
- Yuki Ishikawa as Emeralda Zubin
- Fukushi Ochiai as Raymond Cain
- Shunsuke Takeuchi as Iram Masam
- Misato Matsuoka as Mihessia Hence
- Chiharu Sawashiro as Kenji Mitsuda
- Atsumi Tanezaki as Mace Flower
- Koichi Yamadera as Hundley Yeoksan
Ergo Proxy and Genocidal Organ’s Shukou Murase is directing the film project, with scripts by Yasuyuki Mutou. Pablo Uchida, Shigeki Kuhara, and Naoyuki Onda serve as the character designers for the films. Hiroyuki Sawano returns from Mobile Suit Gundam entries Unicorn and Narrative as music composer, with rock-band [Alexandros] performing its theme song “Senkou”. The films’ mechanical design team consists of Hajime Katoki, Kimitoshi Yamane, Nobuhiko Genba, and Seiichi Nakatani.
The Blu-ray for the film will be released simultaneously with the premiere at all participating theaters in Japan. The upcoming Gundam film will have standard and limited edition versions priced at 5,000 yen and 12,000 yen respectively.