Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Resurrection: Is 'The Goon' Back On?

In the recent years, or months I should say, a lot of adults-only animated features have been bubbling under the surface...

From Titmouse's Nerdland to Augenblick's The Adventures of Drunky to the currently set-in-stone Seth Rogen/Evan Goldberg collaboration Sausage Party, we've seen quite a few these days, and a good number of them were done in traditional animation!

Now another one might be coming up... The Goon!

A few weeks ago, it was reported that this long-in-the-works adaptation of the Eric Powell graphic novel of the same name from Deadpool director Tim Miller was back on track. It began life in 2008 as a project from VFX/animation house Blur Studios, and David Fincher was attached to produce. Powell himself was onboard too, Miller was attached to direct sometime after, but it went nowhere, though scenes were made out of the crew's pockets. A test trailer was released in 2010, showcasing the tone you can expect from this project... (Paul Giamatti and Clancy Brown supply the voices here.)

The trailer has a very fun, pulpy vibe to it and looks impressive for what they had at the time. In 2012 it was relaunched with a Kickstarter, and they got as far as making an 85-minute animatic, as revealed recently...

Its content alone was enough of an issue for potential distributors, as The Goon obviously isn't a family-friendly comic nor was the movie adaptation. The expected rating now is a PG-13. What is it about? The titular character and his friend Franky protect their home, Lonely Street, from various supernatural threats from zombies to vampires to all kinds of creatures. A pretty violent series, it sounds like a prime material for a good adult-oriented animated film.

Miller said to Collider...

"I know it annoys the Kickstarter fans so much and I’m sorry because everybody gives us their hard-earned money and they’re so generous about it and they go, ‘What the fuck is going on? Why is nothing happening?’ We took that Kickstarter money and spent it all on a full 85-minute animatic of the film. We showed it to [David] Fincher, we’ve been working on it diligently, we got a bunch of notes, and we’ve been working on the notes. It’s just it took all of the Kickstarter money to do the 85-minutes of that and fulfill all the other stuff, so we go back to this additional work, [which] goes into the cracks between actual paying projects."

With Deadpool a massive breakout success (and how!), Miller and his crew are hoping to use that success to further The Goon, to get it back on track.

"If Deadpool shined any light in the direction of the studio, we wanna use some of that light to shine it on Goon. So we’ve been doing a lot of work lately, we did some voiceover last week."

He went on to say...

"I do think that there is a corollary. Deadpool proves it, in a big way, that there is a market for this stuff out there… Goon is very much an action—it’s got a lot of heart, it’s got a lot of comedy, it’s got a lot of similarities to what I think was successful in Deadpool, and so I think it’s not a stretch to compare those two things and say the world is a little more ready than they used to be for this kind of material. In the past, there’s reasons why The Goon wasn’t made, it’s because people were afraid of edgy animation. Now I think that Deadpool has proved that that audience is out there in a bigger way than some people thought."

Maybe. Deadpool did prove one thing: An R-rated film can make huge money, in fact the film won't be outgrossed by the PG-13 Batman v Superman domestically! As long as the movie looks good, droves of people will come. Studios avoided the R because they thought the PG-13 could get the tentpole grosses, and that R would be the killer. Conventional wisdom, you gotta love it. Even before Deadpool we saw a few R-rated films break out...

Miller is now of high interest after that success, and I think it's possible that someone will pick up The Goon. Right now, Miller is going to direct Deadpool 2, whenever Fox intends to release that. (Probably 2018.) My guess?

It'll gain some real traction if Sausage Party makes a nice profit at the box office this come August. If that film breaks out, we'll be hearing quite a different tune from our mainstream animation industry. I think The Goon could benefit from this, and in a way you can say that Deadpool might be one of the kickstarters of an adult feature animation renaissance here in America. One that could possibly top the one in the 1970s fired up by Ralph Bakshi.

What do you think?


  1. Speaking of Sausage Party, it's apparently gotten very good reviews from its screening at SXSW, and on Rotten Tomatoes it has over 12,000 user ratings.

  2. You forgot to watch the new The Angry Brids Movie trailer! Can you see it and share your opinion on it, DeLuxODonnell92?

    1. I saw it, I didn't feel the need to write a post about it - it's pretty much a variation of the international trailer from last month, big difference being the party clown opening - which I thought was funny.