Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Universal Bringing Where's Waldo? To The Big Screen

Several studios were in on the search, but Universal and Illumination Entertainment were the ones who found "Where's Waldo?"

Universal and Chris Meledandri's family film unit have acquired screen rights to turn the "Where's Waldo?" book series into a live-action family pic. Deal was worth high-six against seven figures. Meledandri will produce.

Among other bidders, Warner Bros. chased the property for Bob Shaye and Michael Lynne's Unique Features banner. The rights were brokered by Classic Media's Eric Ellenbogen, who'll be executive producer.

Written and illustrated by Martin Handford, the "Waldo" books have sold more than 50 million copies worldwide. The books contain complex, full-page illustrations of large crowd scenes in which the main character is somewhere hidden, dressed in a red-and-white shirt, a hat, glasses and a walking stick.

Universal and Illumination will seek to create a movie with strong global appeal.

Deal comes as Illumination readies its first picture, "Despicable Me," for a July 9, 2010, release via Universal. Voice cast includes Steve Carell, Jason Segel, Danny McBride, Will Arnett, Kristen Wiig and Julie Andrews.

I first thought this idea was simply stupid when I first heard of this announcement. Then I realized what a real live action Waldo movie might look like and I was somewhat intrigued. If they can make a feature film that's more family oriented and stays somewhat close to what the books are, than we might actually see a fun movie here. Its still too early to tell if this will actually end up good, but I'm kind of excited for it. I mean I know its not original, but honestly what is these days? I think they can make a great film if they make it appeal to more audiences and not turn this family series into an action vehicle.


Fletch said...

I'm with you. It could be awful, but I'm curious to see what they come up with. It sounds so dumb that it just might work.

Farzan said...

Exactly, I too am curious to see how it might turn out. If they go for a family type film than It might work, but I'm still puzzled on how the story is going to be for this.