Charles Schulz’ legendary comic strip Peanuts will reach two impressive milestones in 2015. The strip itself turns 65 years old; A Charlie Brown Christmas, the first of many prime-time animated TV specials based on the strip, turns 50. Sounds like an ample time to revisit Blockhead & Company don’t you think? Today, 20th Century Fox announced that they’ve partnered with Blue Sky Studios and Iconix Brand Group to do just that. Together, they will produce an animated Peanuts feature film, which will be released to theaters on November 25, 2015.
Craig & Bryan Schulz, the son and grandson of the late Charles, will serve as co-writers and co-producers on the project with Cornelius Uliano (Grandpa, The Space Race). Steve Martino (Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who!, Ice Age: Continental Drift) will serve as director. Before I deliver this next piece of information, I’d like to ask that all purists sit down and take a deep breath. OK, are you ready? This will be a computer animated film.
“We have been working on this project for years,” Craig Schulz said in a statement taken from Peanuts.com. “We finally felt the time was right and the technology is where we need it to be to create this film. I am thrilled we will be partnering with Blue Sky/Fox to create a Peanuts movie that is true to the strip and will continue the legacy in honor of my father.”
Before learning of the CG-ness, I was pretty optimistic about the project; now, though, I’m not so sure. A computer animated version of Charlie Brown sounds incredibly creepy. Thankfully, it won’t be a Garfield-esque mash-up of live action and animation. Something like that would be more horrifying than anything Rob Zombie could muster up.
Despite my apprehension, I’m sure I will give it a shot once it’s in theaters. After all, I have two nieces that adored Alvin & The Chipmunks. Will you be checking it out?
UPDATE: Several sites reported (Example 1, Example 2, Example 3) that this film would definitely be computer animated. Now, word on the street is that its animation is unconfirmed. With a CG-friendly director and Schulz directly citing modern technology, though, it’s looking like they will be taking the computer animated route.