The failure of Lady in the Water must have been quite a blow, because egotistical, out of control filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan has been blasted back from whence he came… to making kids movies.

Remember that before he was known as an acclaimed writer and director M. Night was this guy hired to write Stuart Little. Well now The Hollywood Reporter says he’s returned to making kiddie fare. His next film will be a movie for Nickelodeon, a live action adaptation of the animated series Avatar: The Last Airbender. The American made cartoon uses Asian influences like elemental magic and martial arts to tell the story of Aang, successor to the line of Avatars. Avatars are magicians who have mastered the powers of all four elements: Water, earth, fire, and air. Aang and his friends must save the world from the evil Fire Nation, while evading pursuers. Hopefully using their magic powers doesn’t somehow involve lame card battles.

Frankly, I think this is the best thing that could have happened to Night. Not only is he stuck directing a live action cartoon, he’s directing something he didn’t create himself. That’s a first for him, and it’s exactly what a lot of Night fans (like me) have been clamoring for since he first screwed up with The Village. His recent movies have seemed like the work of a man who’s too attached to his own ideas. He’s gone completely out of control. A little time spent writing and directing someone else’s baby in a slightly lower pressure environment might be exactly what M. Night needs to get himself back on track. Who cares if it’s good or not, it’s the movie he makes after this one that will be worth paying attention to. Think of this as M. Night cleansing his palate.

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