When it was announced earlier this year that Paramount Pictures had decided to kick off a large new slate for their animation division, we told you that the first film put into development was a long delayed sequel to The Spongebob Squarepants Movie. However since then, there hasn’t been too much of an update regarding what exactly the studio is planning either for the sequel or its other projects to join the upcoming film. Now some months afterward, a new report says that Paramount has decided to bring multiple familiar properties to the big screen. And this time, M. Night Shymalan isn’t going to come close to touching The Legend of Korra.
Variety reports that Paramount’s Brad Grey to supply intellectual property to adapt into full-length theatrical features, including Dora the Explorer, Monkey Quest, and the massively popular Avatar: The Last Airbender sequel series The Legend of Korra. Joining them is also a project from Mary Parent called New Kid, which is an adaptation of the Penny Arcade comic of the same name that focuses on a human dropped into a school filled with aliens, and a mysterious J.J. Abrams project with details yet to be revealed.
With it also comes the news that Kung Fu Panda 2 writers Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger will be writing the script for the untitled Spongebob Squarepants sequel. As the two board to pen the film, one of the series’ writers Paul Tibbitt has also joined as the new director. Show creator and the last film’s director Stephen Hillenburg will still be overseeing the project in an executive producing capacity, with a late 2014 release date being aimed for.
As for the other properties mentioned above, Paramount has yet to confirm that anything is in the works just yet. However,The Legend of Korra could be an absolute smash hit for all ages across the board. While the live-action adaptation of The Last Airbender still retains a reputation of absolute disgust from fans and critics alike, an animated theatrical adventure couldn’t be too far out of reach. The series debuted this year with a shortened-season format, and will continue the method for three more years before wrapping up its total run.
A film could effectively provide a grand series finale that the franchise deserves after nearly universal acclaim from many since the original show’s debut back in 2005. The Legend of Korra has been received just as well, with some calling it a more successful turn that touches on the more mature tones while still maintaining the same appeal from Avatar: The Last Airbender. Again, nothing has been confirmed…but we’ve seen crazier things happen.
Paramount and Dreamworks Animation have a joint contract that runs out at the end of this year, with a renewal possibly not in place. Paramount are prepping these projects for a development slate as possible projects that could emerge as huge contenders in the years to come, but it’s unclear just which ones may ultimately see the green light.
We’ll keep you updated as information becomes available in the future.
What do you think? Would you like to see a Legend of Korrafilm? What about the other possible features?