Thursday, October 24, 2013
A new film based on Peanuts is something to celebrate, right?
For a while, it seemed like this new film - simply titled Peanuts for now - would be a disaster in the making. Not because it's supposed to be computer animated, but because we all think that Blue Sky Studios (Ice Age, Rio, Epic) will go the cynical route make it resemble the kiddie Alvin and the Chipmunks and The Smurfs. A lot of us assume that they are just going to modernize it and make it hip, in order to get the quick buck.
However, Charles Schulz's son and grandson are penning the screenplay with short film director Cornelius Uliano. Horton Hears a Who! and Ice Age: Continental Drift director Steve Martino is set to direct, and now a producer has been named: Paul Feig of Bridesmaids and The Heat fame, who is a huge Peanuts fan...
Now that seems alright. The film may turn out to be respectful to Schulz's iconic strip, if not great. However, will all of these talented folks have to obey the rules? Will these people have to go by to the notes that the execs give them? Or not? Blue Sky's track record, in my opinion, isn't so hot. That being said, I think they're capable of making a masterpiece on the level of the greats (any studio is, really), this very film could be it because honestly, I don't see Rio 2 being their greatest feature.
Also... Peanuts is something that you simply can't mess up for a movie adaptation. Alvin and the Chipmunks and The Smurfs, if you ask me, aren't great to begin with. That all being said, they didn't deserve to be "hipped up" they way they were in their respective recent movie adaptations. Nostalgic takes on those characters would've fine, not stuff with toilet humor and pop culture references that'll make them look dated in 5 years. As far as I'm concerned, the Chipmunks were a fun novelty and an okay cartoon show (both the 1960s cartoon and the 1980s one), The Smurfs television show (emphasis on "television show", I'm not talking about the original comic strip) was nothing more than just another Hanna-Barbera cartoon... One that just happened to be big. But Peanuts... That's a whole different ballpark, you simply can't screw any movie adaptation of it up.
Plus, even though I see all mediums as equal, Peanuts should be a hand-drawn film. I just can't see it working in computer animation...
What do you think of the upcoming Peanuts film? Do you think it could be good? Great? Or do you think it'll just be an insult? Sound off below!