Live Action/CG “Smurfs” film

smurfscgi.jpg

What hath Alvin and the Chipmunks wrought?

It’s being widely reported today that Sony is co-financing a live action/CG Smurfs feature film. I’m not usually the pessimist around here, but this can’t be any good – can it?? Variety reports that David Stem and David Weiss (Shrek 2, Jimmy Neutron) are being hired to write the screenplay, and Sony Pictures Animation has certainly made some good films (Open Season, Surf’s Up)… maybe they can pull it off?

(Image above from ComingSoon.com)


  • http://pediatristsplayground.blogspot.com “Kenny” Martinez

    I thought Paramount was going to make this, not Sony.

  • Steve Gattuso

    It’ll be popular if it duplicates the ending of that Unicef short.

  • Rob Fendler

    I hope they don’t smurf this one up.

  • Iain Robbins

    I highly doubt this film will become a hit since the cartoon to live action boom has hit with Chipmunk fever and crashed with Speed Racer at the wheel.

  • Tom Pope

    Oh geez…..

  • S

    It could work, Gargamel would be interesting to see in live action. But the writing choice doesn’t seem right. Smurfs don’t need to save the universe with fart jokes.

  • P.C. Unfunny

    Well I don’t care about Smurfs. They can screw it up if they like. I actually think they should make an urban, hip-hop, cgi movie. There could new smurfs like “Hood-Rat Smurf” and “Baby Daddy Smurf”.

  • http://afrokids.com Floyd Norman

    I’d rather watch the Blue Men in Las Vegas.

  • http://thelink.concordia.ca Christopher Olson

    I was absolutely a fan of Surf’s Up, so there’s absolutely no reason for this to be bad… is there?

  • http://ryuuseipro.deviantart.com John Paul Cassidy

    Hopefully, if they at least have Johan and Piroulit (Peewit), I’ll be a happy camper. (After the NARNIA films, I can see it working!)

  • http://siskavard.blogspot.com Corey

    Smurfs Up

    sorry.

  • Wendell Willkie

    CGI is fast becoming America’s generic corporate visual waste product.

  • http://tsutpen.blogspot.com Stephen Cooke

    I can’t wait to see David Cross play Gargamel!

  • http://www.ronimation.com Ron

    Who’s gonna play Gargamel…Adrian Brody?

  • http://dtoons-pro.com Alex Dudley

    Wait, isn’t someone else making a trilogy Smurf movie?

  • Roberto

    PC Unfunny, did you ever read the original smurf comic books created by Peyo? Yo should, they’re brilliant (some of the late ones are influenced by the american tv series and are too childish, but the first ones are fantastic).

    I DO care a lot about smurfs, in fact I actually care more about them that I did about Alvin and The Chipmunks. Maybe cause being an european comic book is more popular here than the Chipmunks, even though most people still know smurfs because of the tv series.

    I loved the tv series as a child but I believe I won’t like it if I ever rewatch them, something that I’m not really planning to do any time soon.

    I don’t expect anything very good with this project either. I hope it’s ok. The comic books do have potential to make fantastic movies, that’s for sure, but I’m sure this is going to be one of those “free” adaptations that barely resembles the original.

  • http://www.peterbernard.com Peter Bernard

    Well if you go back to the source material, you could make a good live action/cgi movie out of that. But they won’t and it’ll suck.

  • Baron Lego

    Who’ll voice Smurfette? Avril Lavigne or Angelina Jolie?

  • http://medrawsjamie.blogspot.com jamie

    they just need to follow this live smurf film and it will be goooooooold!!!!
    http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/ff41d3afb2

  • Christopher Cook

    It’s the Smurfs. Of COURSE it’s not going to be any good.

  • Ed Thompson

    There was the live action Flintstones. Then the Live/CGI Scooby Doo and Garfield, and finally last years Underdog. With box office successes like these, how do they keep getting money for this stuff?

    Give me an ANIMATED Invader Zim or Samurai Jack….. and keep the movie execs out of the decision making loop. You could also come up with an original animation (not a TV remake) film too.

  • Bugsmer

    That is one ugly smurf pressed against the window. If the Smurfs are CGI, will Azriel share the same fate? Maybe Gargamel, Johann and Pee Wee will be CGI and the Smurfs will be played by midgets. It won’t be the same Jokey without June Foray’s voice. If the movie’s atmosphere stays true to the atmosphere experienced when watching or reading the Smurfs, the movie can work, but I predict that it probably won’t.

  • P.C. Unfunny

    Roberto: No I haven’t and I don’t plan on reading them to be honest.

  • http://tomcatltd.com Sean

    At least they seem to be on model.

  • P.C. Unfunny

    Jamie: I was trying to find that SNL spoof ! Sean Connery needs to come out of retirement for that one.

  • Roberto

    PC Unfunny said:
    “Roberto: No I haven’t and I don’t plan on reading them to be honest.”

    ^Ok. Then you’ll have to believe me, they are very good, much, much, much better than the tv series.

    Cristopher Cook says it isn’t going to be any good cause it’s the smurfs.

    But, like Peter Bernard said, they could really do a brilliant trilogy if they tried to capture the tone and stories from the comic book. But they won’t, they would probably adapt the tv series. Which is pretty sad, cause this idea of the cinematic trilogy with these characters sounds like an interesting one if they were willing to do it right.

  • Gordan

    P.C. Unfunny,

    Roberto is absolutely right. The early Smurfs comic books are brilliant. Dismissing them based on the cartoon show would be like dismissing Segar’s Popeye based on the KFS cartoons…

  • http://portapuppets.does.it uncle wayne

    Pleez don’t throw stones….but—-after months of da-redding it….(and belieeeve me…i wuz!!)…..i actually enjoyed the HELL out of “Alvin!” I found it was true to the entit. I trust that our blue friends can be half as “loyal.”

  • P.C. Unfunny

    Godan: I am not dismissing because I am basing it on the cartoon. I am dismissing because I just don’t care.

  • http://kitschensyngk.deviantart.com/ Kitschensyngk

    The thing I dread most about this is that like very other live-action cartoon movie they’ve gotta make it “hip” and “up-to-date” for kids who weren’t even alive when the original show was on TV.

    Heaven help us if they come up with something like “Mix Master Smurf”!

  • mat

    The smurf books were more grown up and kind of like pinky and the brain. Still aimed for kids but with jokes that would go over the kids heads.

    Try this one out. http://www.amazon.com/astrosmurf-Smurf-adventure-Peyo/dp/0394851404/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1213185446&sr=1-2

    It will cost you a whole $1 to buy but it’s worth it. Check out king smurf afterwords.

    You may also want to find a vhs copy of smurfs and the magic flute. It’s closer to the classic books then the show was.

  • http://cartoonresearch.com/gerstein David Gerstein

    Agreed on the Smurf comic albums. Wonderful, often surprisingly racy stuff with elements for all ages, often reminiscent of Asterix in tone (and similarly translated by Asterix’s Anthea Bell and Derek Hockridge in some editions, at least). The original Smurfs had numerous moments of innocent charm, but we also got to see them fight civil wars, run rigged elections and occasionally get drunk.
    I specifically recollect an interview in which Peyo clarified that Brainy Smurf wasn’t just a snooty geek. He really represented the toady type in any society who sucks up to the leader of the moment in an effort to enhance his own authority. It was merely luck that benevolent Papa Smurf happened to rule the village; Brainy would just as gladly have sung the praises of an autocratic strongman, and in the “King Smurf” album quite readily does. Great stuff, and heavily softened when Hanna-Barbera adapted it.

    The difference between the original Smurfs and Hanna-Barbera’s Smurfs is perhaps most like that between Floyd Gottfredson’s 1930s Mickey Mouse and the average 1970s-1980s comics understanding of Mickey Mouse. There is some pretense to exciting situations; there are still battles with enemies, directly inspired by the old days, but the treatment is aggressively childish and often unintentionally campy—the kind of thing that breeds simple nostalgia rather than true appreciation. Worse, this is the version that most Americans remember, so any modern update is more likely to be a sophomorically “hip,” spin on the 1980s than a smart, funny update of the 1930s original (or in the Smurfs’ case, 1950s-70s original).

  • http://www.io.com/~o_m OM

    …As I’ve said for quite some time, there’s only one Smurfs cartoon that was ever worth the effort to be put on cel, and that was the UNICEF PSA where the little blue bastards all got bombed off the face of the earth! I actually sent $10 USD to UNICEF for that one!

  • Chris Sobieniak

    What Roberto and David Gerstein have stated about the Smurfs is the same as I would look to it as well. I think for most of America, we tend to look upon the Smurfs as 1980′s iconography due to the exposure of the H-B cartoon than for it’s source material in the form of comic albums that had been in print for many years. Having read many of those older stories like Astrosmurf and King Smurf, I can see how much of that had been filtered and diluted over time given how the original intentions of the characters had changed in reflection to the times. Especially in the way the Smurfs had been characterized as being nearly the same (not counting certain distinctions like Brainy’s glasses) except for their personalities/characteristics being their defining factors (hence the names). I hadn’t seen the later stores that came out after the 80′s, but I can tell a lot probably had happened in response to the success of said American program. Today it would not seem out of the ordinary if a Smurf was drawn in street clothes in replace of their traditional white trousers and/or Phrygian caps, but that’s pretty much a product of today’s marketing decisions and how to further explore uncharted territories with their signature property.

    It’s true of how some of those stories had been adapted into the first season of the H-B cartoon (having Brainy be the one who takes over as king by force in King Smurf for example). The original books have a lot of clever wit and pose interesting thoughts on how the world of the Smurfs could translate into the real world with the problems we face. I love how in guys complain about their ordeal when it came to trouble the entire village had in making one smurf’s dream come true in The Astrosmurf. They see this as a dumb thing yet they have no choice to to go along with the staged hoax.

    I would recommend getting those early books if you can find them. Would be nice if they would get reprinted as a tie-in to the upcoming film if need be, but you also have the option to buying imported copies from Europe as well.

  • dan

    if anyone needs me, I’ll be over here stabbing my eyes with burning hot sticks and poking holes in my eardrums, so that there is no possible way I can see or hear another thing to do with this idea.

  • http://gogopedro.com BLORT!

    NO NO NOOOOOONNOOOOOO!!! MY EYES!!!

    For the love of all things holy, tear out my eyes……
    This makes me wanna vomit.

    Pedro

  • http://www.io.com/~o_m/omworld OM

    …Mea Culprit! I should have posted the link to that UNICEF Smurf PSA:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MAYrF1PDks

    …I know Jerry and Amid posted it a while back, but what the hell? This is the only Smurf cartoon worth watching! And send a few bucks to UNICEF while you’re at it, eh? Maybe we can convince them to do a second PSA where My Little Pony gets sent to the glue factory! :-) :-)

  • irongiant

    what’s next? the snorks??!?!

  • http://gogopedro.com BLORT!

    IRON GIANT JUST SAW THE FUTURE….

    P

  • Chris Sobieniak

    Seems like people still can’t get over that UNICEF thing despite it only ever getting seen briefly on Belgian television after 9 or 10PM a few years ago, but then that’s how the internet works it’s charm to expose these things to the global masses.

  • Larry T

    That is one ugly smurf pressed against the window.

    Yeah, that’s the first thing I thought when I saw it too.

    David, Roberto, and Chris are absolutely right about the original Smurf comic strips- they are very enjoyable and extremely clever. The Smurfs represented this simplified view on society from a convoluted perspective.

    But we all know the only reason this movie is being produced is because CGI-animators and producers get off on creating one single character model and then multiplying it to the dozens…. (dalmations, penguins, fish…… ) it makes them feel like deities.