As Will pointed out earlier this morning writing about the upcoming Warner Bros. project Alien Zoo, movies that combine live-action and CGI animation haven't been doing so well lately. Mostly that's to be blamed on Marmaduke, but don't try and tell me people are totally psyched about Yogi Bear and The Smurfs.

It's mystifying when people keep trying to improve on an animation style that peaked with Who Framed Roger Rabbit? over 20 years ago, but it's even stranger when they do it at the expense of something generally great. Thus we find ourselves with the news in Deadline Hollywood that Twilight producers Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey have picked up the rights to Babar, the familiar French elephant who has been a stable of children's literature for nearly 80 years. The plan is to make a series of family films with the character, and yes, they will combine live-action and CGI.

Babar has been brought to films int he past, of course, and it's unclear if Bowen and Godfrey are planning something small-scale and explicitly kids-only like the previous films, or something bigger and further reaching like, uh, Marmaduke. The power of nostalgia aside I don't see much appeal for adult audiences in a Babar movie, so as long as they keep the animation relatively inoffensive and the tone appropriate for kids, the movie might slip under the outrage radar rather than infuriate many, many generations of children who want to see what they love go untouched.

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