Pokémon Live professional recording (lost footage of musical; 2000-2001)


Pokémon Live professional recording
Photo of the show's original cast.
Photo of the show's original cast.
Status Partially Found

Pokémon Live! was a live-action musical based on Nintendo's popular Pokémon franchise. Touring the United States from September 2000 to January 2001, the show was approximately 90 minutes long and was produced by Radio City Entertainment, 4Kids, and Nintendo. A professionally-recorded version of the musical was shot at one of the Chicago shows, and was planned for release on TV and home video. However, these plans fell through, and no full recordings of the US show have surfaced, outside of bootlegs.

Plot and Production

The play begins with Ash, Misty, and Brock setting out for a Pokémon Gym, in response to a challenge from a mysterious Gym Leader. The challenge stipulates that anyone who can defeat the Gym Leader's Pokémon in a battle will win a special "diamond badge". Afterwards, it is revealed that the challenge was set up by Team Rocket leader Giovanni, who has created a powerful Pokémon named MechaMew2, and intends to use it for world domination.[1]

The musical used live action actors for both characters and Pokémon, albeit with some exceptions for string-controlled characters. A DVD release was alluded to in promotional material, such as a page on the Pokémon website from the time, but was presumably abandoned around the same time the show's planned UK tour had to be cancelled due to "unforeseen circumstances".[2][3]

Search

After the show ended in 2001, it was largely forgotten by the general public. However, interest in Pokémon Live was revived in April of 2016, when popular YouTuber Chadtronic created a video on the topic entitled "THE MYSTERY OF POKEMON LIVE". The video contained comments from the musical's production stage manager, Chris Mitchell, who had previously uploaded a bootleg recording of the Chicago show in a series of 7 parts. Mitchell cited lack of interest and monetary concerns as the reason for the show's failure, claiming that "[the] Pokemon craze was not as big in 2000 as it was in 1999."[4]

He also confirmed that a high-definition multi-camera version was shot but never released for unknown reasons, and that it was currently lost in the archives of the respective rightsholders. Reportedly, Mitchell himself has repeatedly tried to obtain a copy of the professional recording, but has been unsuccessful. Chadtronic ended the video by starting the hashtag #FindPokemonLive, and encouraging anyone with information to contact him.

The search did bring forth some new information, such as a promotional video in which Brock's actor mentions the DVD release, as well as the script for the musical.[5][6] However, it was ultimately unsuccessful in its goal of finding the professional recording, and interest died back down after a few months.


Chris Mitchell's recording of the show.
Chadtronic's video on the subject.
A "making of" video for the musical.
Interview with Michael Slade, writer of the musical.

Dubai Show

While the U.S show remains elusive, in October of 2016, a professional recording of Pokémon Live actually did surface - albeit, from the Dubai performance of the show. The video was uploaded by MiG Ayesa, the actor of Ash for this particular performance, and was uploaded to YouTube as a response to the popularity of the Pokémon GO app.

The performance appears to be significantly different from the American production, with lower production values and a shorter runtime of 50 minutes. In addition, multiple music numbers and even entire characters have been removed, such as Professor Oak, and Delia (Ash's mother). Still, the video gives a decent representation of what the US recording may have looked like, and provides new hope that it may surface some time in the near future.

It seems like these Dubai performances resulted from a mix of people and companies from different countries. The cast, director, and producer were completely Australian. The wardrobe came from the U.S.A. The sound effects and music were also added by a British sound company.

The Dubai performance of the musical.

Sound Equipment

The second newsletter from Electro-Voice, "Speaking of EV Volume 1 No 2"".[7] has on the last page a section, where they list all (or a couple) of the sound equipment used for some of the most popular U.S or Europe tours. One of the tours listed was none other than "Pokémon Live"

  • 16 X-Line XVLS full range speaker cabinets
  • 8 SX300 speaker enclosures 4 EV Xi1082 speaker enclosures
  • 2 EV S40 speaker enclosures
  • 1 EV MTH2 speaker enclosure 2 EV MTH2/64 speaker enclosures
  • 1 EV MTH2/94 speaker enclosure
  • 4 EV MTL4 speaker enclosures
  • 2 EV DMC 2181A speaker processors
  • 14 Telex BP325 intercom beltpacks
  • 1 Telex MCE 325 intercom station
  • 1 Klark Teknik 7204 delay plus EQ
  • 4 Klark Teknik DN360 stereo equalizers
  • 1 Klark Teknik DN60 analyzer EV

Appearance/Removal Dates of Websites/Advertisements

Here, I have listed when each of the official "Pokémon Live" websites opened and closed. All of this couldn't have been possible without the Wayback Machine. I know this isn't any help, but I'm trying my best to find ANYTHING about this show.

  • First mentioned on Pokémon website[8]sometime between: May 27, 8:43 AM - June 13, 10:06 AM, 2000
  • First appearing on Radiocity page[9]sometime between: May 27, 8:43 AM - June 13, 10:06 AM, 2000
  • eKIDSinternet ecenter homepage[10]sometime between: August 18, 6:11 AM – October 8, 10:44 AM, 2000
  • First Wayback Machine record of Diamondbadge.com redirecting to Radiocity is on: November 9, 4:09 AM, 2000


  • Diamondbadge stopped redirecting to Radiocity sometime before: April 5, 9:42 PM, 2001
  • Radiocity page got taken down sometime between: December 7, 9:10 PM, 2000 – April 5, 9:42 PM, 2001
  • Pokémon site took it down sometime between: June 2, 12:17 PM – August 5, 3:33 PM, 2002
  • Ekidsinternet ecenter homepage got taken down sometime after: June 2, 12:17 PM, 2002

eKIDSinternet Pokémon Contest

eKIDSinternet also held a Pokémon contest[11]sometime during January, 2001. The first contest involved listening to 5 songs from Pokémon Live, and naming all of them correctly. The prize was a Nintendo 64, and the winners were chosen January 23, 2001. There was another contest, which involved finding Pikachu on the eKIDSinternet website. The main Pokémon ecenter[12]had an Adobe Flash “movie” playing, but is no longer viewable. Fortunately, anyone who scans the website with HTML can see that the developer typed what was said in that Flash “movie”. Here is the text, extracted from the Pokémon ecenter website, before it was removed sometime after February 6, 2001:

CONTEST play Name that Pokemon Tune We bet you've heard all the cool original songs from PokemonLive. Now it's time to test your ear… Name all 5 Pokemon Tunes to enter a special drawing sponsored by eKIDSinternet.com. the presenter of PokemonLive! Grand Prize a brand new Ninetendo 64! Plus loads of runner-up prizes! It's easy! Listen to each selection and click on the name of the song. Answer all five correctly to enter the drawing. The drawing takes place on January 23, 2001. So play to enter. You may be the lucky winner of a Nintendo 64. But remember, you gotta enter to win! Hey! Want another chance to win a Nintendo 64! Here's how…Order an eKIDSinternet disk now and enter a whole new sweepstakes. Pikachu's hiding" only on eKIDSinternet and only you can find him when you get your disk for a 6 month free trial. But remember, you gotta order an eKIDSinternet disk now to enter. To play: 1.Click the play button and listen to the song. 2.Click on the correct title of the song. 3.Continue until you have answered all 5 correctly. 4.Enter your first name, e-mail address and city on the form, and submit entry. Good Luck! FIRST NAME: E-MAIL: CITY:

References

  1. Wikipedia page for Pokémon Live! Retrieved 31 Dec '16.
  2. Archive of the official Pokémon website mentioning a home video release Retrieved 31 Dec '16. Archived 19 Oct '01.
  3. News article on the UK tour's cancellation Retrieved 31 Dec '16. Archived 04 Jan '03.
  4. Chadtronic's "THE MYSTERY OF POKEMON LIVE", containing many comments from Chris Mitchell Retrieved 31 Dec '16.
  5. Behind-the-scenes video where the DVD release is mentioned Retrieved 31 Dec '16.
  6. Script for the musical Retrieved 31 Dec '16.
  7. Full Speaking of EV Volume 1 No 2 newsletter Retrieved 6 Jan '17
  8. Official Pokémon Live Website Retrieved 6 Jan '17 Archived 09 Nov '00
  9. Radiocity website Retrieved 06 Jan '17 Archived 07 Dec '00
  10. Ekidsinternet ecenter homepage Retrieved 6 Jan '17 Archived 05 Dec '00
  11. Contest form given to people who guessed the 5 songs Retrieved 6 Jan '17 Archived 23 Jan '01
  12. Ekidsinternet Pokémon ecenter Retrieved 6 Jan '17 Archived 06 Feb '01

Comments


avatar

Aranea

9 months ago
Score 0++

Yeah, from what I heard there were a few bootlegs floating around.

You can still get the soundtrack... but only at Nintendo World, it seems. I went to NYC quite a few years ago, and even though I had to do a little bit of searching, it was there.
avatar

Anonymous user #1

9 months ago
Score 0++
Do you think we should go after Nintendo, 4Kids, or the big Nintendo store at NYC?
avatar

Aranea

9 months ago
Score 0++
Well, I was only able to find the soundtrack there. And that was in 2007. So idk if they're even still selling CDs.
avatar

Mrkoolnerd

8 months ago
Score 0++
i saw this not the dvd or vhs release the live showing of it it wasn't where this was filmed though i don't think it's worth finding it's terrible
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Afrin

8 months ago
Score 0++
In méxico they filmed the show (with mexican cast) and aired it on national tv "Canal 5" but also that one is lost
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Bman78

7 months ago
Score 0++
I also heard of a Portuguese and Belgian Dutch versions as well, and I had a shoutbox conversation months ago saying that there are possible releases of those that were shelved. I do know that there was footage of the Portuguese one that got taken down years ago.
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Anonymous user #2

8 months ago
Score 0++
Not to offend anyone, but this article starts off great but then degenerates into a ramble
avatar

Anonymous user #3

2 months ago
Score 0++
ikr
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TeridaxXD001

2 months ago
Score 1++
How is this "found" if it's specifically about the professionally-recorded version?
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LoserAtFinding

2 months ago
Score 0++
(This article is kind of a mess so I can't tell if it's even talking about a "professionally-recorded version" or not but don't tell anyone I said that shhh)
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Sharked98

2 months ago
Score 0++

A PROFESSIONAL RECORDING OF THE DUBAI SHOW HAS RESURFACED!!!!!!!

https://www....=4cXLN8SmH84
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Anonymous user #4

1 months ago
Score 0++
I have an entire word document that lists (or tries to list) each date and time when any of the official pokemon live websites opened and closed, and all of the sound equipment that got used during the show . Do you think this information will be useful enough to be included as an edit? Please let me know.
avatar

Anonymous user #4

1 months ago
Score 0++
Oh also, Ekidsinternet also held a pokemon contest, which used 5 songs from pokemon live, and the prize was a Nintendo 64. The drawing took place Jan 23, 2001.
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PannenkoekenNL

1 months ago
Score 0++
Yes, that would be great.
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Chris426

1 months ago
Score 0++
I added more information. Hope any of you will find this useful. :P
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TeridaxXD001

1 months ago
Score 0++
If the Portuguese footage is lot, should we somehow incorporate that into the article? Or maybe make a separate one?
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TeridaxXD001

1 months ago
Score 0++
  • lost, not "lot." Sorry about that.
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Kobochat

1 months ago
Score 0++
In general, articles should be detailed enough to have all relevant info, but concise enough that they don't ramble on for hours trying to jam in every single possible detail. If you want to add a brief mention to the article go ahead, but I don't really think that's relevant enough to warrant its own section, let alone its own page. Right now people are specifically searching for the Chicago footage, and this article is already starting to get messy again...
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ProfessorTomNook

29 days ago
Score 0++
I remember watching that 7-part bootleg back in 2012. It was really fun to riff, though I'd say it's objectively okay.
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Chris426

28 days ago
Score 0++

Guys, please get this Tweet as MANY LIKES AS POSSIBLE, so the Pokémon Company and Nintendo can see this!!!

https://twit...186093948928
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PannenkoekenNL

28 days ago
Score 0++
They don't even read their Twitter replies. Emailing them would be a better idea.
avatar

Chris426

26 days ago
Score 0++
Just sent the Pokémon Company an e-mail today. Hopefully they'll respond with SOME form of an answer.
avatar

Chris426

10 days ago
Score 0++

No email reply yet. Somehow I got banned on the old wikia for nothing. wtf

Your user name or IP address has been blocked. The block was made by [[User:|]]. Reason given: Automatically blocked by abuse filter. Description of matched rule: things Start of block: 16:01, February 11, 2017 Expiry of block: infinity Intended blockee: Block ID: #285

Current IP address: lol nice try
avatar

Chris426

7 days ago
Score 0++

Sent the Japanese support website a question in a form two or three days ago. Well there's good news and bad news. The good news is that they responded. The bad news well. . . いつもポケットモンスターオフィシャルサイトを ご利用いただきありがとうございます。 ポケットモンスターオフィシャルサイトは 日本国内専用サイトでご用意いたしております。 海外からのアクセスは可能でございますが 日本国内でのサービス等に関するご質問のみ 日本語でお答えさせていただいております。 ご了承ください。 We are afraid that we operate our services in Japanese language only. お問い合わせいただいた件でございますが、 大変恐れ入りますが、当窓口では、 海外でのサービスについては、 ご案内を差し上げることができません。 せっかく、お問い合わせいただいた中、 お力になれず、心苦しい限りではございますが、 何とぞご了承くださいますようお願いいたします。 海外のポケモンに関する情報に関しては、 下記サイトにてご確認いただくことができますので、 よろしければ、ご利用ください。 ○The Official Pokemon Website  http://www.pokemon.com/ ○Pokemon Support Center http://suppo...deptID=15227

これからもポケットモンスターをよろしくお願い申し上げます。
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