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Live-Action Show Depicts Fictional Live-Action Film Production of Kinnikuman Manga

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Gordon Maeda plays himself in October series inspired by wrestling superhero manga

WOWOW announced on Monday that it is producing a live-action series titled Kinnikuman: The Lost Legend. The story centers around the fictional production of a live-action movie based on Yudetamago's wrestling superhero manga Kinnikuman. Gordon Maeda plays himself in the series.

The series is set in 2019, when the Kinnikuman manga inspired the (fictional) production of a movie titled Muscleman. On the day before the movie's announcement, the production team runs into trouble. In the story, Gordon Maeda has been cast as the character Warsman in Muscleman. He and his co-stars embark on a journey to discover the "secret past" of Muscleman, in order to get the movie's production back on its feet.

The series will premiere on WOWOW in October. Tetsuaki Matsue is directing the series, and Takeshi Takemura is penning the scripts. (The two previously collaborated on the manga-based documentary series Yamada Takayuki no Tokyo Kita-ku Akabane.)

The manga creator duo known as Yudetamago resumed their original Kinnikuman wrestling manga as a free web manga in 2011. The creators went back to their first 1979 Kinnikuman storyline and continued where they last left the story in 1987. The original manga has inspired various television anime series and films. Yudetamago previously published a Kinnikuman one-shot manga in Shueisha's Grand Jump magazine in 2015, and then published a one-shot in Weekly Shonen Jump for the first time in 11 years in June 2019.

Toy figures of Kinnikuman were imported into the United States under the "M.U.S.C.L.E" brand name in the 1980s. Viz Media then released Takashi Shimada and Yoshinori Nakai's Kinnikuman Nisei - Second Generations manga sequel in North America as Ultimate Muscle: The Kinnikuman Legacy, and 4Kids Entertainment broadcast the anime adaptation on television.

Sources: WOWOW, Comic Natalie

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