They haven't been around long, but Illumination Entertainment is quickly establishing itself as one of the major players in the world of animated film. After establishing themselves with last summer's Despicable Me (which was met with a surprisingly positive critical response) the company put out the Russell Brand-starring Hop (which didn't really succeed on the same level). Currently in the works is an adaptation of Dr. Seuss' The Lorax and a sequel to Despicable Me, but they're not done yet. Now they're bringing back Woody Woodpecker.
THR has learned that Illumination, which is a branch of Universal, is currently developing a feature film based on the feathered instigator. While things are still in the planning stages, John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky, whose previous work includes the 2007 Will Ferrell ice-skating comedy Blades of Glory, as well as multiple episodes of King of the Hill and The Goode Family, are currently in negotiations to develop the story. Woody Woodpecker was first created in 1940 and was originally voiced by Mel Blanc, who you may also know as the guy who did Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Taz, Sylvester the Cat, Tweety Bird, Foghorn Leghorn, Yosemite Sam and seemingly thousands of other cartoons for Warner Bros., Hanna Barbera, and other studios. Though the character has been voiced by five actors since, the most recent was Billy West, who fans may know from Futurama and Ren and Stimpy. Woody, who is best known for his crazed laugh, was most recently brought back with 1999's shortlived The New Woody Woodpecker Show.
Provided they can develop a story that can sustain the character for 90 minutes, I have absolutely no problem with Illumination trying to make a new Woody Woodpecker movie, but I do ask one thing: please, for the love of god, don't make it a CGI animation/live-action hybrid. Please.
NJ native who calls LA home; lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran; endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.
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