Twentieth Century Fox has released the first trailer for the sci-fi movie, Alita: Battle Angel.

Based on a popular manga Battle Angel Alita (or Gunnm in Japan), the upcoming movie is a collaborative effort between veteran directors, James Cameron (Titanic, Avatar) and Robert Rodriguez (From Dusk Till Dawn, Spy Kids).

Who Is Alita?

Alita: Battle Angel stars Rosa Salazar (The Maze Runner: The Death Cure) as the titular Alita, a female cyborg. She awakens in the 26th century with no memory of her past and the world. She was rescued from a scrapyard by Dr. Daisuke Ido, a compassionate cybernetic doctor played by two-time Academy Award winner Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds, Django Unchained).

Despite Dr. Ido's efforts to shield her from her mysterious origins, Alita sets out to discover the truth about her life. She meets and falls in love with Hugo, played by Keean Johnson (Nashville), a young man who offers to help trigger her memories.

Computer-Animated Heroine

The movie will be a mix of live action and computer-generated imagery. The main heroine herself, Anita, was played by Salazar by wearing a motion-capture suit. The result is a cybernetic female that looks more like an anime character than a regular human being.

"When I first saw the images [Cameron] put together, it was really embracing the idea of bringing in a very manga character with the enlarged eyes — which we haven't seen since Astroboy in the 30s and has never been cinematically photo-real," Rodriguez told EW. "It seemed like an opportunity to get the look of a manga in a cinematic way, and to do that Alita would have to be completely CG, and it's now possible to bring a photo-realistic person to life."

However, Rodriguez also made sure to incorporate practical effects into the big screen adaptation. The trailer did show Alita interacting with non-animated characters like Waltz's Dr. Ido and Johnson's Hugo. EW also mentioned that the scrapyard where Dr. Ido found Alita was constructed in Rodriguez's studio in Texas.

10 Years In The Making

Cameron has been interested in a big screen adaptation of Battle Angel Alita since the '90s, but the project was stalled when he decided to make Avatar. He reportedly wrote a 186-page screenplay with over 600 pages of notes which Rodriguez trimmed into a usable shooting script.

Cameron is still attached to the project as a "producer" with Jon Landau. The movie also stars Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Michelle Rodriguez, Jackie Earle Haley, and Ed Skrein.

Alita: Battle Angel will land on the big screen on July 20, 2018.