A big item that came out last week (while I was busy hauling stuff about) was that Harmony Gold and Big West buried the hatchet. In return for letting the live-action Robotech movie (totally not Hollywood vaporware, we promise!) into Japan, we might start seeing official Macross releases.
From the Kotaku article:
… but the tl;dr version is that when the American company Harmony Gold licensed the original Macross back in the early 80s for a Western release (as part of the compendium series Robotech), they thought they were getting the international rights to every Macross series that would ever be released subsequently, which triggered various legal battles between them and Tatsunoko Productions, Studio Nue and the advertising company Big West, who argued they absolutely were not.
From the press release:
- Tokyo based BIGWEST CO.,LTD. and Los Angeles based Harmony Gold U.S.A. announced an agreement regarding the worldwide rights for the legendary Macross and Robotech franchises. This expansive agreement signed by both companies on March 1, 2021, ends two decades of disagreements and will allow Bigwest and Harmony Gold to chart a new path that will unlock the great potential of both the Macross and Robotech franchises worldwide. The landmark agreement immediately permits worldwide distribution of most of the Macross films and television sequels worldwide, and also confirms that Bigwest will not oppose the Japanese release of an anticipated upcoming live-action Robotech film. The agreement also recognizes Harmony Gold’s longstanding exclusive license with Tatsunoko for the use of the 41 Macross characters and mecha in the Robotech television series and related merchandise throughout the world excluding Japan. Moving forward, both parties will cooperate on distribution regarding future Macross and Robotech projects for the benefit of both franchises.*
The emphasis was added by Kotaku, but it’s an important point. I’m hoping we start seeing these available soon.