Ahead of the release of his next movie Godzilla vs. Kong next month, filmmaker Adam Wingard has been tapped to direct a theatrical Thundercats movie for Warner Bros. Directly inspired by the cult classic cartoon series, the new movie adaptation will feature a mix of “hyper-real” CGI and animation. Wingard also promises that the movie won’t have the typical animation/live-action hybrid look, as he wants the characters to genuinely “look like ThunderCats” instead of the cat-like people from the controversial movie Cats.
In addition to directing, Adam Wingard will direct ThunderCats using a new screenplay co-written with Simon Barrett. They’ll be writing the story completely from scratch by tossing out a previous draft by David Coggeshall. With Coggeshall on board, the project was being developed by Rideback’s Dan Lin and Vertigo’s Roy Lee, who served as producers on Wingard’s movie Death Note. Speaking with Deadline to confirm the ThunderCats news, Wingard reveals how it was this connection that enabled him to board the project.
“I’m in a place where Godzilla Vs Kong has gone well with Warner Bros. They love the movie, as we were wrapping it. I heard there was a ThunderCats script out there and it happened to be set up with some of my producers on Death Note. I asked them, I want to rewrite this script with my friend Simon Barrett. This is a huge passion thing for me. Nobody on this planet knows or has thought as much about ThunderCats as I have. They gave me the reins. I saw this as an opportunity to do a new type of fantasy sci-fi spectacle film that people have never seen before.”
Wingard also divulged some details about the look and feel of the movie and its characters, hoping to avoid the backlash surrounding Cats when it was released in 2019.
“It’s got a rich mythology; the characters are fantastic. The colors. I want to do a ThunderCats film that takes you back to that ’80s aesthetic. I don’t want to reinvent the way they look; I want them to look like ThunderCats. I don’t want to do it live-action, either. I don’t want it to look like Cats, I don’t want those kinds of issues, no disrespect to that director whom I don’t mean to throw under the bus any more than everyone else has. I want to do a movie you’ve never seen before. A hybrid CGI film that has a hyper-real look and somehow bridges the gap between cartoon and CGI. That’s the starting point, and Simon Barrett and I are getting into the script now.”
It’s not yet clear when ThunderCats will begin production, as Wingard and Barrett are just getting started on the screenplay. In his interview with Deadline, Wingard also suggests that his next project might be Face/Off 2, so it could be a while before ThunderCats starts filming. Until then, fans of the filmmaker can look forward to watching Wingard’s new blockbuster Godzilla Vs. Kong when it is released in the United States on March 31 in theaters and on HBO Max. This news comes to us from Deadline.