‘Power Rangers’ Movie Reboot: Elizabeth Banks Morphs Into Rita Repulsa

Elizabeth Banks

Those who were born in the late 1990s will remember “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.” It was a TV show about costumed teenagers wearing biker helmets and throwing kung fu punches at the likes of Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd. The series is still continuing as “Power Rangers Dino Charge.” However, the good news for fans of the series is that a new movie based on the franchise is in the works and Spider-Man actress Elizabeth Banks has been cast as Rita Repulsa.

People has provided the first look at a fully costumed reptilian Elizabeth Banks in the movie. The character, who is based on Witch Bandora of the Japanese series “Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger,” is an alien witch who, like most intergalactic villains, wants world domination. She was imprisoned by Zordon of Eltar once during a failed invasion to Earth but became free along with her minions near Earth’s moon.

“I’ve never played a villain before,” Banks told People, adding that she’s looking forward to “world domination – and being unpredictable as a character.” From the looks of it, her interpretation looks set to be more edgy and sinister than the comical performance given by Barbara Goodson. Banks confirms this – “It’s definitely a modern and edgy re-imagining of the original Rita Repulsa.” She added that “We wanted to give her a backstory that connects her to the new Rangers.”

As for who introduced her to the world of the Rangers, Banks says it was her brother, Geoff. “It might be his favorite show of all time,” she told People. Banks will also direct the “Charlie’s Angels” reboot.

Entertainment Weekly had given a first look at the new Rangers. Pop star Becky G, RJ Cyler (“Me and Earl and the Dying Girl”), Naomi Scott, Ludi Lin, and Dacre Montgomery will play Trini, Billy, Kimberly, Zack, and Jason, respectively. Director Dean Israelite (“Project Almanac”) will helm the movie. It is being produced by Lionsgate and Saban Entertainment. The movie will be released on March 24, 2017 in the United States.

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