One of the Guardians of the Galaxy in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Zoe Saldana is working on an anime series. She’s co-creating a project for streaming service Crunchyroll with her two sisters, Cisely and Mariel.
The sci-fi series is called Dark Star Squadron, and it’ll follow four space cadets who go for a joyride one day, only to get back to find their school’s been decimated. Bummer. Crunchyroll describes the show as “an epic animated space opera”, with the four leads trying to work out exactly what happened. The Saldana sisters are producing under Cinestar Productions, a company they co-founded, and Todd Ludy, a writer on Voltron: Legendary Defender, is on board for scripting.
“As true animation and anime fans ourselves, we are so excited for the opportunity to partner with Crunchyroll to bring Dark Star Squadron to a wide audience,” all three Saldana sisters said in a joint statement, via Comicbook. “We can’t wait for everyone to meet the crew and follow the journey of our unlikely heroes.” At present, it’s unknown if Saldana will be lending any of her acting or filmmaking talents to production.
This is one of many original projects Crunchyroll is putting together. The streaming service crossed five million subscribers last year, and it seems Hollywood talent is part of the strategy for further growth. “The tremendous growth of our streaming service is indicative of the growing love for anime and its deserved spotlight in popular culture,” Joanne Waage, general manager of Crunchyroll, added. “Zoe and her team are bringing their own anime fandom to their storytelling and we’re excited to be a part of it.”
One of Crunchyroll’s biggest series is coming later this year, Blade Runner: Black Lotus, a spin-off from the science fiction movie set in 2032. You can see the trailer above – it’s due to premiere towards the end of 2021. You can already watch One Piece, along with many other classic anime, through the platform.
Saldana herself returns to the MCU for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, part of Marvel Phase 4, coming to theatres May 23, 2023. She also has the Avatar 2 release date coming next year, and Avatar 3 thereafter.