Despite its enduring popularity, we’ve somehow been without a new entry in the Gremlins franchise since 1990, but that’s about to change as an animated prequel series to the classic 1984 Christmas movie is coming.
Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai has been in the works for a while, so you may be aware that it’s due to be set in 1920s Shanghai, following the adventures of the old Chinatown shopkeeper from the film as a young boy with Gizmo by his side. Earlier today, we finally got our first look at the upcoming show as in an article on the many children’s and family series heading to HBO Max, Variety shared the below image, depicting 10-year-old Sam Wing and Gizmo walking through a Shanghai street.
Showrunner Tze Chun confirmed on Twitter that this is a piece of concept art and not a glimpse at the series’ animation style. “Love what this team has been doing and excited to show you more,” the EP wrote on social media.
Secrets of the Mogwai will explore the origins of Gizmo, how he and Sam met and how his mysterious, magical species ties into Chinese folklore. Together with young thief Elle, the pair will have to stop an evil businessman and his army of Gremlins (Mogwai spawn that have been fed after midnight – you know the drill).
For more, here’s the official synopsis:
“Along with teenage street thief Elle, Sam and Gizmo take a perilous journey through the Chinese countryside, encountering, and sometimes battling, colorful monsters and spirits from Chinese folklore. On their quest to return Gizmo to his family and uncover a legendary treasure, they are pursued by a power-hungry industrialist and his growing army of evil Gremlins.”
The show comes from Warner Bros. Animation, with Steven Spielberg once again producing through his Amblin Television label. This is the second TV revival of a classic franchise from Amblin that’s on the way, too, as Hulu is just about to drop the first season of the new Animaniacs in November.
As for Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai, its 10-episode debut run is due to arrive on HBO Max sometime in 2021. Hopefully in the earlier half of the year, if we’re lucky.