'C.O.S.M.O.S.' Movie In The Works At Paramount Animation, Described As A Mix Of 'Men In Black', 'Willy Wonka', And 'Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy'

Since forming in 2011, Paramount Animation has only produced five films. But there's a new one in development at the studio: a C.O.S.M.O.S. movie, which will be based on the forthcoming children's book series by Tom Wheeler (Puss in Boots, The Cape, Cursed). It's an adventure story which Hollywood insiders reportedly describe as like "Men in Black meets Willy Wonka with a shout out to Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." Here's what we know about the project thus far.

The Hollywood Reporter says that Paramount Animation has optioned the film rights to C.O.S.M.O.S., a book series written by Wheeler. The first book, called The Doomsday Vault, is said to be coming out on March 15, 2022, so Paramount Animation snagged this one very early. (So early, in fact, that information about the book is not even listed on Wheeler's publisher's website.) But THR's insiders describe the story as "an epic, mind-bending adventure that celebrates curiosity, diversity, and the power of science to save our world." That's a little too generic to get super excited about a film adaptation right now, especially since we know so little about the source material. Wheeler is said to be writing the screenplay.

Paramount Animation does not exactly have a great track record so far. They've made two SpongeBob movies (the second, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run, will be released in the United States next month), a film called Sherlock Gnomes, and then two outright disasters. There was 2019's Wonder Park, which was so bad that it was released without a director's name attached to it (which almost never happens). But before that, there was 2017's Monster Trucks, which was originated by – and I promise this is not a joke – the four-year-old son of Paramount's president at the time. And the thing about Monster Trucks was...it wasn't even animated. Yep, Paramount Animation produced a live-action movie. So if that's possible, who knows if C.O.S.M.O.S. is going to be animated or live-action? Up is down, left is right, there's chaos in the streets.

Meanwhile, Paramount Animation has three more movies up its sleeve that will supposedly be released this year: an animated wrestling monster movie called Rumble, PAW Patrol: The Movie, and a still-untitled My Little Pony film. Naturally, plans for those releases could shift at any second given the ongoing nature of the pandemic, so we'll have to see what happens. But I guess...start get pumped for C.O.S.M.O.S. in a few years?