Sabotage!?! There’s incredibly weird, and increasingly depressing, buzz coming off Spike Jonze‘s Where the Wild Things Are, and now Chud reports that execs at Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures are considering reshooting the entire $75 million friggin’ movie! This news, of course, comes on top of the rather cool test footage that leaked last weekend, and the rather subdued statement Jonze released yesterday concerning the early footage. There are even wild rumors circulating more and more in the industry that Jonze might take his name off the project, and Devin’s report at Chud doesn’t persuade against that speculation. This is serious, people. Take this excerpt for example…

“Yet I’m hearing that just such a massive reshoot is what is on the table right now. And it’s not because of technical issues, unless you want to consider the lead kid actor and the script technical issues. Sources tell me that the suits at Legendary and Warner Bros are not happy with Max Records, the actor playing Max, the mischievous boy who is crowned King of the Wild Things. Worse than that, they don’t like the film’s tone and want to go back to the script drawing board, possibly losing the Spike Jonze/Dave Eggers script when they do it. Apparently the film is too weird and ‘too scary,’ and the character of Max is being seen as not likable.”

It’s not yet in the open whether Jonze has final cut on the children’s flick. If so, and if this news is well-founded, that could mean a major tug-o-war with execs and possibly end up with Jonze removed from the project altogether. With his former girlfriend, Karen O from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, doing the soundtrack and a tight-knit crew, that would be one ballsy move by WB. Do they really want to play knock the hipsters off the island? Jus’ sayin’.

Of course, Jonze’s statement yesterday mentioned no such drama, but he didn’t release an elated in-progress statement like James Cameron just did below, either. Early audience reports from test screenings late last year were prototypically alarming, calling the film “dark,” “not suitable for small children,” complaining about “some desert place” et al. But Maurice Sendak‘s book is, as many /Film commenters have smartly pointed out, about monsters, imagination and the free realm where kids play. Sendak is also said to be on board as a consultant to Jonze and co-screenwriter Dave Eggers on the film, and Eggers, the co-founder of McSweeney’s and a literary darling, is even writing a spin-off novel to accompany the film.

This chic house of cards would lend credence to Spike and Co. staying with the project, which has been delayed until 2009 due to reported visual effects difficulties pertaining to the Wild Things’ faces (the Jim Henson Company created their costumes). But, what if, just what if…

More on this (and probable Free Spike Jonze t-shirts) as it develops. In the meantime…

Discuss: If this is true, tell Warner Brothers what you think! They are listening. Do you want a version of WTWTA on par with traditional family fare like 2003’s The Cat and the Hat and A VeggieTales Movie?

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