Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time!
Empire's Guardians Of The Galaxy Cover
Does Star Wars Have A Brain Trust?
Nick Frost:
My Movie Life

The World's End star's pick of the flicks
Subscribe: 6 Issues For £15!
Subscribe today and save 37% off the cover price!
Movie News

LATEST HEADLINES
YESTERDAY
New Unbroken Trailer Sprints In
The true story has a fresh promo
Roger Allam & More Join Mr. Holmes
The aged Sherlock story fills its cast
Rachel Weisz Up For The Light Between Oceans
She's in talks to join Derek Cianfrance's latest
First Trailer For Wild Online
Reese Witherspoon walks off her troubles
New Poster For This Is Where I Leave You
Welcome home. Get uncomfortable
Emmy Nominations 2014 Announced
Some good choices, some baffling...
More Movie News

Ready For Manimal: The Movie?
'80s cult TV becomes CG/live-action

17 September 2012  |  Written by James White  |  Source: The Hollywood Reporter

submit to reddit

Every time some new nugget of nostalgia is mined to fuel the hungry development furnace, we enjoy hauling out comparable ideas (TV shows, books etc.) that would never, ever, seriously get optioned. But somehow, as the list of untouched titles dwindles, we’re constantly surprised by what does suddenly become attractive to studios. Take today: Sony Pictures Animation has decided that Manimal is worth making into a movie.

Manimal, for those of you too young to recall it, or desirous of decent television unwilling to dip into such a cult show, revolved around… Well, why don’t we let the opening narration tell you? “Dr. Jonathan Chase... wealthy, young, handsome. A man with the brightest of futures. A man with the darkest of pasts. From Africa's deepest recesses, to the rarefied peaks of Tibet, heir to his father's legacy and the world's darkest mysteries. Jonathan Chase, master of the secrets that divide man from animal, animal from man... Manimal!”

Even shorter version: wealthy doctor turns into animals (usually a hawk or a panther, but occasionally he’d diversify into a bear, a horse, and even a snake once) and helps the police. The transformations were ridiculous, but always entertaining, when they weren’t off screen.

We can sort of see the appeal: Glen A Larson’s original series, which was blessed with the best cast names ever in Simon McKorkindale and Flash Gordon’s Melody Anderson only lasted eight episodes and was largely derided by critics. So there’s scope to make something better, with modern effects technology. Or there’s the 21 Jump Street approach, but with a panther instead of Channing Tatum.

Right now, it’s early days on the idea, which will be designed as a live-action / CG hybrid, as the studio is merely meeting with writers to find the best pitch. What next? The Flumps? Don’t joke – someone will try it…


Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

Rupert Wyatt Leaving Apes Sequel?
Rumours have him ditching Dawn
Arrested Development S4 Extended?
Update: More episodes will be shot!

Your Comments

only 8 episodes?
never realised this was so short lived. loved it as a kid, and used to do the hand thing as a party trick, due to some odd joints (between meta-carpels, not juvenile narcotics). no reason they can't do something great with a film version, even if the show was much crapper than my tiny '80s mind realised. More

Posted by obimoo at 17:19 on 21 September 2012 | Report This Post

WTF
BAD FUCKING IDEA .NUFF SAID More

Posted by samhaim at 23:48 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

Do it 'Avengers' style!
How about Manimal, Automan and the A-Team together? And then maybe add Airwolf, Street Hawk and Knight Rider? Why is no one in movie land looking at this?! More

Posted by bdgr at 18:19 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

I'm ready!
But why stop at Manimal? What about Automan?!? He was great! More

Posted by bdgr at 18:11 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

Make it funny, could work
I think the only way this could work is if you cast someone funny, Will Ferrell or Andy Samberg say, or a good looking fellow playing against type, Ryan Gosling or Michael Fassbender for example. Either way, there's no change you could make a serious drama out of the premise. More

Posted by RogueElement at 17:20 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

Flumps Would Be Fuckin Awesome!
The Flumps being brought out of retirement to rescue Pootle from the clutches of Fingermouse and Bagpuss...Expendables style! That would be fuckin cool! As for Manimal, give me a break...I did watch it as a kid but no matter how great the effects, a man turning into a snake or a frickin rat is just bollocks! More

Posted by Fozola at 12:57 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

RE: Ha Ha!
Had to look twice when I saw this one, think this finally shows that after Universal saying they're concentraiting on sequels now they've finally came up empty on the new ideas front. More

Posted by Wild about Wilder at 10:03 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

Ha Ha!
MANIMAL! An old favourite. I still have old episodes on VHS that I taped when they were first aired on BBC1 back in the 80's. Yeah, why not? Hollywood have regurgitated worse ideas. And follow it up with AUTOMAN and STREET HAWK! More

Posted by Void Indigo at 09:41 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

I would watch the shit out of a Flumps movie. More

Posted by MojoMonkey at 09:33 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

Air Wolf!
Give me Air Wolf! More

Posted by Nicky C at 09:12 on 18 September 2012 | Report This Post

SPECIAL FEATURE
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time EMPIRE READERS' POLL: THE 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME
You turned out in your hundreds and thousands, and here are the results... Browse the full list


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
Film Studies 101: Ten Movie Formats That Shook The World
The pre-digital innovations that formed modern cinema

Exodus: Gods And Kings: Ridley Scott's Trailer Breakdown
The director talks us through his enormous Biblical epic

Jay Baruchel Talks How To Train Your Dragon 2
From The Human Centipede to the origin of 'Useless reptile'

Spotify Playlist: Now That's What I Call... Richard Linklater!
The Boyhood director has a soundtrack for life

Empire At EIFF 2014: Elijah Wood Q&A
See highlights of our Edinburgh chat with the actor

The Empire Podcast #118: Keira Knightley And Dean DeBlois Interviews
The Begin Again star and How To Train Your Dragon 2 director pop in for a chat

Watch: Industrial Light & Magic's Greatest Hits
From Star Wars to Transformers, we run through some of the best individual moments from the special effects masters

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time Subscribers' Cover

Subscribe today and get the cover and 3 issues for only £10!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 12 issues of Empire for just £18!
Special 25th anniversary offer for one month only! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)