Madagascar Penguin Spin-Off Movie Gets Bee Movie Co-Director

It looks like the world is getting ready for Penguin Madness 2.0. It all started, of course, in 2005/2006 with the release of March of the Penguins, Madagascar and Happy Feet, but now the flightless birds are making a serious comeback. In addition to Mr. Popper's Penguins dropping a few months back and making a substantial chunk of change at the international box office, Happy Feet 2 is set to drop in November and now a Madagascar spin-off focusing on their penguin characters has found its director.

THR reports that Simon J. Smith, director of the short Shrek 4-D and co-director of the Jerry Seinfeld-starring Bee Movie, has been hired by Dreamworks Animation to direct the untitled project. The film is not the first time the penguins have been thrust into the spotlight, as the scene-stealers have their own show on Nickelodeon called The Penguins of Madagascar, and multiple direct-to-DVD releases. Alan J. Schoolcraft and Brent Simons, the writers of last year's Megamind, have been hired to write the script, which was fast-tracked back in March. Unlike the show, which has a whole bunch of penguins, the new film will focus only on Skipper, Kowalski, Private and Rico (though it's unknown who will be providing the voices).

Given the ridiculous popularity of the Madagascar penguins, I'm amazed this hasn't happened sooner. Madagascar 3 is in development for next summer, but I'm amazed that they didn't just skip it and move forward with this project instead. Unless something unbelievably terrible happens, Dreamworks Animation stands to make a lot of money from this movie.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

NJ native who calls LA home and lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran who is endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.