Netflix has greenlit a new animated series that will follow the Army’s 157th Infantry Regiment from the initial Allied landings in Italy to their advance through Europe during World War II.
Titled The Liberator, the four-part animated series is based off historian Alex Kershaw’s book by the same name and will be directed by Grzegorz Jonkajtys, known for his stylized work in Sin City, Pan's Labyrinth, and The Revenant.
The animated war drama will also be the first animated film to be produced using “a new patent-pending technology combining state-of-the-art CGI with live-action performance” according to a Netflix statement.
The series will closely follow the exploits and struggles of Felix Sparks, the commander of the 157th, “a National Guard unit comprised primarily of cowboys, Native Americans, and Mexican-Americans,” as he leads them on a 500-day odyssey across Europe during the height of World War II.
Sparks and his soldiers fought from the beaches of Sicily, through the mountains of Italy and France; weathered a brutal winter, and enemy attacks, on the border of Germany, before fighting tooth and nail through city streets in Bavaria.
However, it was at the concentration camp of Dachau that Sparks and the men of the 157th faced their most daunting challenge: After the 157th seized control of the camp, a number of unarmed German soldiers — by The Liberator's account, at least 17 — were shot in reprisal killings.
After the shooting began, Sparks rushed to the yard firing his pistol into the air to get the attention of his men, and to wave them off. "You couldn't think of a greater stress test for leadership than that, really," Kershaw told Investors Business Daily in 2013. "You see the very definition of integrity and leadership."
According to the interview Kershaw gave in 2013, it was this event — and Sparks' response in particular — that inspired him to write The Liberator, and subsequently, inspired the animated series.
So far, no date has been provided for when The Liberator will debut on Netflix, and the four-part series has yet to enter into production.
Every once in a while, we run across a photo in The Times-Picayune archives that's so striking that it begs a simple question: "What in the name of Momus Alexander Morgus is going on in this New Orleans photograph?" When we do, we've decided, we're going to share it — and to attempt to answer that question.
Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces control the monitor of their drone at their advanced position, during the fighting with Islamic State's fighters in Nazlat Shahada, a district of Raqqa. (Reuters/Zohra Bensemra)
MUSCAT (Reuters) - The United States should keep arming and aiding the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) following the planned U.S. withdrawal from Syria, provided the group keeps up the pressure on Islamic State, a senior U.S. general told Reuters on Friday.
Long before Tony Stark took a load of shrapnel to the chest in a distant war zone, science fiction legend Robert Heinlein gave America the most visceral description of powered armor for the warfighter of the future. Forget the spines of extra-lethal weaponry, the heads-up display, and even the augmented strength of an Iron Man suit — the real genius, Heinlein wrote in Starship Troopers, "is that you don't have to control the suit; you just wear it, like your clothes, like skin."
"Any sort of ship you have to learn to pilot; it takes a long time, a new full set of reflexes, a different and artificial way of thinking," explains Johnny Rico. "Spaceships are for acrobats who are also mathematicians. But a suit, you just wear."
First introduced in 2013, U.S. Special Operations Command's Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit (TALOS) purported to offer this capability as America's first stab at militarized powered armor. And while SOCOM initially promised a veritable Iron Man-style tactical armor by 2018, a Navy spokesman told Task & Purpose the much-hyped exoskeleton will likely never get off the launch pad.
"The prototype itself is not currently suitable for operation in a close combat environment," SOCOM spokesman Navy Lt. Phillip Chitty told Task & Purpose, adding that JATF-TALOS has no plans for an external demonstration this year. "There is still no intent to field the TALOS Mk 5 combat suit prototype."