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POPEYE LIVES! Rumors Of Feature Cancellation Not True

POPEYE LIVES! Rumors Of Feature Cancellation Not True

Despite what you may have read in the Hollywood trades or other animation news blogs, I’m here to tell you they’ve all got it wrong. Popeye still lives! 

I’ve been bombarded in the last 24 hours by folks telling me how upset they are over news that Sony has cancelled the Popeye movie. Sorry folks, I don’t know where you got that information. I’m here to set the record straight.

Sony hasn’t cancelled the film. What has happened is that Genndy Tartakovsky had moved on to completing Hotel Transylvania 2 and has started production on an original flick, Can You Imagine? 

According to a Sony Pictures Animation spokesman I contacted today – and I quote: “Genndy has been developing both Popeye and his original idea Genndy Tartakovsky’s Can You Imagine? (temp title) at the same time while directing Hotel Transylvania 2.”

“It initially looked like Popeye would happen first but Imagine pulled ahead and is now scheduled to be his next directorial film at Sony Pictures Animation. That said Popeye is still very much in active development.”

That’s the official word. Beyond that, both King Features and producer Avi Arad remain dedicated to bringing the famed comic strip sailor man – hopefully at Sony – to the screen.

To sum up: The rumors of Popeye’s death have been greatly exaggerated. His voyage to the screen has been delayed – but is still on course. So put that in your pipe and smoke it! 

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I love Popeye and hope things go well, but I’m really disappointed Genndy is off the project. my only hope is that it gets postpones enough that he can get done with Can You Imagine and direct it after all. I’m sure his vidion is better than the studios’

Kevin Martinez

It sounds like this won’t be any different from any of the other animated movies that have had director changes. It will just continue under someone else.

I’m sorry to see Genndy go to, but its probably for the best that he work on an original movie and have more freedom.


I’m with Chad. I only care about the new film because its release has been the stated impetus for continuing the DVD series (Volume 3 was released in 2008)! Good to see it moving forward.

Ken Roskos

We will have to see how good "Popeye" will really be w/o Genndy Tartakovsky at the helm. Most of the movie going public still doesn’t think of Sony Animation the way they think of Disney or Pixar.

Kevin Martinez

Jeffery: They change directors in animated features all time. Even at Sony, Hotel Transylvania spent 10 years in development and went through five directors. It’s not always as publicized or dramatic as Brenda Chapman’s ousting from "Brave", but it happens.


Is there any hope of a Volume 4 of the Popeye cartoons?


I hope the POPEYE movie does go forward, even without Genndy, though honestly, a big part of my reason for wanting this to get made is the possibility that it’ll get us the color Famous Studios’ Popeye cartoons on DVD, if not Blu-Ray.


Tartakovsky was still quoted as saying the following by Moviefone:

“I was in love with what we were doing, but I think the studio is going through changes and I don’t know if they want to make the ‘Popeye’ that I want to make.” He went on to say, “Right now, I’m off that project and moving on to the other one we soft-announced, which is Can You Imagine?…It was hard to let Popeye go, but that’s the business.”

How else are we supposed to interpret "off" that project? I wouldn’t be so relieved about this situation just yet.

Roberto Severino

Wow! What a relief. Thanks for the news, Jerry. I still have a feeling the project may be in good hands after all.

Maciej Kur of Polnad

THANK YOU SO MUCH MR. BECK :) This will make me sleep at night again :)


Yeah I think its really cancelled bro… in it’s place we can instead watch the Emoji movie…

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