Filmmaker Shawn Levy is seemingly everywhere these days and very much in demand. The director of the “Night At The Museum” franchise and rather toothless comedies like “Cheaper by the Dozen” “Date Night” and “The Pink Panther” remake is putting his finger in multiple pies, and has seemingly graduated to the next level of filmmaking
DreamWorks saw effects and tentpole aptitude in his ‘Museum’ films and hired him to direct the sci-fi boxing film, “Real Steel,” with Hugh Jackman. Fox and producer James Cameron must have been impressed with what they’ve seen so far because yesterday it was announced he has been tapped to helm the 3D remake of “Fantastic Voyage.” And the “Real Steel” collaboration must have gone swimmingly across the board, as Levy and Jackman are already set to reteam on an untitled action-adventure project from “Lost” writer Carlton Cuse.
Now there’s another project with his name on it, albeit one he won’t be directing. 20th Century Fox Animation has announced that it is developing an animated bigscreen version of Roger Hargreaves‘ beloved “Mr. Men” series and Levy will produce.
If you were a child of the ’70s and ’80s this is likely one children’s adaptation that is near and dear to your heart and one that hopefully won’t sport any hip, modern-day sensibilities. Starting in 1971 Hargreaves published a series of “Mr. Men” books like “Mr. Nosy,” “Mr. Chatterbox,” “Mr. Happy” and a “Little Miss” series followed shortly thereafter.
No directors have been chosen here, but we think this needs the gentle and thoughtful spirit of someone like Mike White (or the amiable tone of painter Bob Ross), only someone in the animation field (unless he’d be willing to make the leap). No writer is attached either so perhaps that suggestion would be a good entry point (only the first idea is free, guys). An animated TV version of the series aired in 1975 by Terry Ward‘s company, Flicks Films, broadcast by the BBC. The more recent “The Mr. Men Show,” aired in the U.S. on the Cartoon Network and in the U.K. in 2008 and 2009. [THR]