Live-Action ThunderCats Is Moving Forward

Jaws dropped at Legendary and Warner Bros. when Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire opened to $80 million in North America over Easter weekend despite getting shredded by critics. It wasn’t quite double what tracking services had predicted, but close enough. And by day 10, its global cumulative had hit an impressive $361.1 million as it stayed atop the chart. So, it seems likely that there will be a third in the Godzilla-Kong crossover films.

But fans have been waiting on a different project director Adam Wingard is working on. Ever since the Godzilla vs. Kong was released in 2021, Wingard has been attached to a Thundercats live-action movie with his long-time collaborator Simon Barrett.

In a new interview for Godzilla x Kong, Wingard confirmed that Thundercats is still in the works:

“Simon [Barrett] and I are still actively working on the script,” Wingard told io9. “We finished our last draft basically right when I was going into production on [the latest Godzilla-Kong film] and we just had to put everything on hold. [But] right now we’re actively working on it again. So, whether that means that’s the next thing I do or [not], I’m not sure. But it’s definitely one of the top priorities I have right now in terms of working on a script.”

And it turns out, Wingard has been working on it for years before 2021.

“My real obsession with ThunderCats came in high school, the pinnacle of me deciding I wanted to be a filmmaker…I didn’t pay attention in school, made terrible grades. And the reason? I was writing my ThunderCats screenplay through my entire 10th-grade year. And I was handwriting it. The screenplay itself ended up being 272 pages long. I still have it.”

ThunderCats was an animated TV show that ran from 1985 through 1989, with a total of 130 episodes. The show follows a group of animal-human hybrids from the planet Thundera, which is dying and under attack by mutants. The ThunderCats eventually land on Third Earth, where the natives are mostly warm and welcoming, but the mutant monsters are close behind.

While fans have already suggested a number of actors who would make excellent leads in the film, the greater challenge may be the visual effects. Recent movies like “Cats” have highlighted the difficulty of bringing anthropomorphic cats to life on-screen. The decade in which the animated series made its debut may provide some guidance. Perhaps filmmakers should consider employing the practical makeup effects that defined the decade. Advances in prosthetics have made these techniques more effective than 40 years ago.

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