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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Shawn Levy To Produce MR MEN Animated Film Series

Cinemimi[Wednesday, February 09, 2011]
The last three to four years have been a dispiriting time for anyone born in the late 80s, and not least because of that tragedy that befalls most people of moderate health- turning thirty. No, of late, the fickle mistress that is cinema has been whoring out our childhood memories to corporate capitalism from the brothel that is Hollywood, and nothing, it seems, will be forgiven chastity. And so, in this culture, we can but utter a dispirited sigh that the series of Mr Men and Little Miss series of cartoon books have been optioned by 20th Century Fox with a view to being plastered onto a screen at the world’s ubiquitous multiplexes.

The series of books that began publication in the early 1970s and was created by the late Roger Hargreaves joins the ranks of Transformers, The A Team and Thundercats on the long list of re-makes and “re-imaginings” of 80′s fare that swamp what now pass for theatres. Sadly, of course, the reason that such a plundering of simple classic material has been allowed to take place is simple- money.

Following the passing of Hargreaves, his wife sold the rights to the characters and stories to Chorion, who control the rights to a multitude of British children’s classics. And that leads us to today’s deal to bring Mr Noisy, Mr. Happy and Mr. Tickle et all to the big screen.

In fact, this isn’t the first time that tales of the Mr Men have found their way to the screen. Even in the 1970s, the BBC produced a series heavily based on the original stories and characters and has now achieved classic status- having been repeated numerous times- as well as a less successful follow-up in the late 1990s.

A far less dignified fare which, in all likelihood, provoked the people of Fox to pursue a cinematic project was The Mr Men Show, produced by American animators Renegade for the Cartoon Network.

The film’s producer will be the ever busy Shawn Levy- whom we recently reported was linked with Stallone vehicle, Headshot and Fantastic Voyage, although, at this stage, no director has been named (though it’s said it won’t be Levy), and nor has any timetable for release been suggested.


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