Hmmm, let’s see. Movie about sarcastic, wise-cracking, potty-mouthed inanimate object (“Ted“) does unexpected gangbusters at the box-office ($282 million worldwide and growing). Rival studio chief frowns while looking at box-office receipts, looks at his drones, points to a poster and says, “Why don’t we have that?” “How do I get me one of those?”
Scolded and shamed, studio execs run back to their desks, get their assistants on the line, ask for a cappuccino and a cross-reference on every script in the database that includes filthy, wiseacre, side-kick figures… Well, you can see where this one is going, right?
Sony Pictures Animation have closed a deal to acquire the rights to the 1980s TV sitcom, “ALF.” Gee, why have they scooped up rights now? Studios are, if anything, extremely predictable. “Smurfs” producer Jordan Kerner has boarded the project and he’s going to develop the property as a CG-live action hybrid feature (hmm, a little bit like a certain Seth MacFarlane comedy you may have heard about). Granted, the “Smurfs” films have also raked in the gold at the box-office ($563 million worldwide for the first iteration and with “The Smurfs 2 & 3” already being planned for summer 2013 and 2015 releases, respectively) so we imagine the pitch was something like: “It’s ‘The Smurfs’ meets ‘Ted’ only PG-13 so it can reach the four quadrants! We’ll get the older nostalgic crowd who already know the brand, the slightly younger borrowed-nostalgic crowd and we won’t make it too filthy so more audiences then ‘Ted’ can see it!”
That of course ended with a high five and a green light five minutes later.
Better yet for fans of the original series, “ALF” voice actor Paul Fusco will return to voice the furry and semi-friendly extraterrestrial. In case you’re living under a rock “ALF” (Alien life form), created by Paul Fusco, was an American science fiction sitcom that originally aired on NBC from 1986 to 1990. The titular character, Gordon Shumway, was a loveable, but ornery alien who crash landed in the garage of a suburban family named the Tanners. Despite ALFs repeated attempts to eat their cat, Willie Tanner (Max Wright), his family adopted the alien as one of their own. ALF was portrayed by a live-hand puppet which was operated primarily by Fusco. Clearly with the technology advances we have today, CG-live action hybrids are the way to go. [THR]