Warner Bros. is going cartoon crazy as they set up a slew of animation-inspired movies. New Tom and Jerry, Scooby-Doo, Flintstones movies and more are currently in the works. The plan is for Warners to embrace their classic characters, with hopes of crafting animated features and live-action hybrids. Tim Story, director of Fantastic Four, is handling Tom and Jerry, while Harry Potter helmer Chris Columbus is producing Scooby-Doo.
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This week in completely unnecessary ideas that you didn’t think were even possible, there’s a straight-to-DVD movie inserting Tom and Jerry into a shot-for-shot animated version of the 1971 Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.
Let that sink in. Because no matter how you try to convince yourself that it’s some bad trip, it’s real.
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We last reported nearly a year ago that Warner Brothers was aiming to develop a live-action film version of Tom and Jerry, with the titular cat and mouse being CG. Needless to say, it seemed like a bad idea. Just recently our pal Frosty got a chance to speak with the film’s producer, Dan Lin (Sherlock Holmes, Terminator Salvation), and they also chatted about Lin’s upcoming CG adaptation of the fantasy epic comic Bone. We learn what drove him to work on those projects, and also find out quite a bit on Bone — which has the potential to be all sorts of awesome if done right.
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Posted on Tuesday, January 27th, 2009 by David Chen
In this episode of the /Filmcast, Dave Chen, Devindra Hardawar, and Adam Quigley discuss their thoughts on this year’s deeply unsatisfying Oscar nominations, reflect on the intellectual bankruptcy of a Tom and Jerry movie, and vehemently debate the merits of Alan Ball’s Towelhead. We’re joined by special guest and /Filmcast favorite, actor Stephen Tobolowsky promoting the new Blu-Ray release of Groundhog Day.
Join us next week on Monday 9 PM EST / 6 PM PST as we review Taken with Liam Neeson. As always, feel free to e-mail us at slashfilmcast[AT]gmail.com or call us at (781) 583-1993.
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Posted on Wednesday, January 21st, 2009 by David Chen
Despite the critical drubbings that they took, films like Garfield and Alvin and the Chipmunks, which took classic childhood cartoon characters and inserted CGI versions of them into the real world, still made big bank. Desperately wanting to make too much of a good thing, Warner Brothers is now developing a Tom and Jerry film, which, unlike the disastrous 1992 Tom and Jerry film, will have a CGI version of the cat and mouse doing battle in live-action settings. According to Variety, the movie will be “an origin story that reveals how Tom and Jerry first meet and form their rivalry before getting lost in Chicago and reluctantly working together during an arduous journey home.”
I’m not terribly excited about this idea for a couple of reasons. First of all, do we really need to know the origin of Tom and Jerry’s rivalry? Isn’t it kind of obvious why they would be at odds with each other from the beginning? Secondly, the Homeward Bound-esque element of the plot sounds like it might get in the way of the over-the-top violence that was a hallmark of the original series, which would be a disappointment. These are, after all, the characters whose feud inspired their ultra-violent counterparts, Itchy and Scratchy, on The Simpsons. And finally, do we really need more contemporary actors putting words/voices into the mouths of CGI version of beloved childhood characters (assuming that that’s the way they go with this film)? I vote no, but the American public keeps voting yes with their wallets, so I suppose these films will keep on coming.
Discuss: Is a Tom and Jerry movie a good idea?