×
Back to IndieWire

‘Cowboy Bebop’ First Look: John Cho Leads Live-Action Spin on Anime Space Western for Netflix

The 10-episode first season debuts on Netflix November 19.

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL, MUSTAFA SHAKIR as JET BLACK, DANIELLA PINEDA as FAYE VALENTINE and EIN in Cowboy Bebop Cr. GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX © 2021

“Cowboy Bebop”

GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX

The first look at “Cowboy Bebop,” the upcoming live-action reimagining of the beloved Japanese animated series that ran from 1997 through 1998, has landed thanks to Netflix. The 10-episode first season starring John Cho, Mustafa Shakir, Daniella Pineda, Alex Hassell, and Elena Satine debuts on November 19. See first look photos from the series below.

Here’s the official synopsis courtesy of Netflix: “‘Cowboy Bebop’ is an action-packed space Western about three bounty hunters, aka “cowboys,” all trying to outrun the past. As different as they are deadly, Spike Spiegel (John Cho), Jet Black (Mustafa Shakir), and Faye Valentine (Daniella Pineda) form a scrappy, snarky crew ready to hunt down the solar system’s most dangerous criminals — for the right price. But they can only kick and quip their way out of so many scuffles before their pasts finally catch up with them.”

“Cowboy Bebop” is executive-produced by André Nemec, Jeff Pinkner, Josh Appelbaum and Scott Rosenberg of Midnight Radio, Marty Adelstein and Becky Clements of Tomorrow Studios, Makoto Asanuma, Shin Sasaki and Masayuki Ozaki of Sunrise Inc., Tim Coddington, Tetsu Fujimura, Michael Katleman, Matthew Weinberg, and Christopher Yost. Nemec serves as showrunner. Original anime series director Shinichirō Watanabe is a consultant on the series, and original composer Yoko Kanno returns for the live-action adaptation. The series also stars Alex Hassell and Elena Satine.

The original “Cowboy Bebop” ran for 26 episodes. IndieWire recently named the anime show among the best animated series ever made. “Viewers never forget that the freewheeling swagger of Shinichiro Watanabe’s space epic hides a melancholy heart,” wrote Jeff Stone about the series. “Not to mention the greatest opening titles in the history of television. 3, 2, 1, let’s jam.”

Of note in the new live-action series is non-binary actor Mason Alexander Park. Park, who toured nationally with the Broadway version of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch.” They will play fan-favorite character Gren, who will also identify with they/them pronouns. Gren is the right hand to Ana (Tamara Tunie), owner of the hottest underground jazz club on Mars. In the original series, Grencia Mars Elijah Guo Eckener, as they’re known fully, was explored in the two-part episode “Jupiter Jazz.” An aspiring saxophone player at the club known as the Rooster House and a veteran of the Titan War, Gren was subjected to experimental drugs that increased their estrogen and caused them to grow breasts. Gen’s fluid sexual identity ascended the character to a rare LGBTQ representation in anime.

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL, MUSTAFA SHAKIR as JET BLACK, DANIELLA PINEDA as FAYE VALENTINE and EIN in Cowboy Bebop Cr. GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX © 2021

“Cowboy Bebop”

GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX

COWBOY BEPOP (L to R) DANIELLA PINEDA as FAYE VALENTINE, JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL and MUSTAFA SHAKIR as JET BLACK on the set of COWBOY BEPOP Cr. NICOLA DOVE/NETFLIX © 2021

COWBOY BEPOP (L to R) DANIELLA PINEDA as FAYE VALENTINE, JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL and MUSTAFA SHAKIR as JET BLACK on the set of COWBOY BEPOP Cr. NICOLA DOVE/NETFLIX © 2021

NICOLA DOVE/NETFLIX

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL in COWBOY BEBOP Cr. KIRSTY GRIFFIN/NETFLIX © 2021

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL in COWBOY BEBOP Cr. KIRSTY GRIFFIN/NETFLIX © 2021

KIRSTY GRIFFIN/NETFLIX

COWBOY BEPOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL in COWBOY BEPOP Cr. GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX © 2021

COWBOY BEPOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL in COWBOY BEPOP Cr. GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX © 2021

GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) DANIELLA PINEDA as FAYE VALENTINE in COWBOY BEBOP Cr. GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX © 2021

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) DANIELLA PINEDA as FAYE VALENTINE in COWBOY BEBOP Cr. GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX © 2021

GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX

COWBOY BEPOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL on the set of COWBOY BEPOP Cr. NICOLA DOVE/NETFLIX © 2021

COWBOY BEPOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL on the set of COWBOY BEPOP Cr. NICOLA DOVE/NETFLIX © 2021

NICOLA DOVE/NETFLIX

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) JOHN CHO as SPIKE SPIEGEL in COWBOY BEBOP Cr. KIRSTY GRIFFIN/NETFLIX © 2021

“Cowboy Bebop”

KIRSTY GRIFFIN/NETFLIX

COWBOY BEBOP (L to R) MUSTAFA SHAKIR as JET BLACK in COWBOY BEBOP Cr. GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX © 2021

“Cowboy Bebop”

GEOFFREY SHORT/NETFLIX

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Television and tagged , ,


Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox