4 Upcoming Toy-to-Movie Adaptations (That Probably Shouldn’t Be)

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You can thank the success of Transformers 1 & 2 for the plague upon your movie houses that’s to come. Hollywood knows a good formula when it sees one. Well, it knows a formula anyway, and since transforming toy robots hit it big at the box office, Hollywood producers have been slap fighting each other to be the next to cash in on your childhood nostalgia with a toy-based franchise. And there is no toy idea too absurd to throw a few hundred million dollars at.

1. Battleship

Question: How do you create a compelling narrative from a game that features no protagonist, no supporting characters and in fact, no characters at all? Simple, make any damn movie you want and just slap a familiar name on it to milk the brand recognition. In the case of this upcoming sci-fi epic, director Peter Berg sends an alien invasion after Liam Neeson, Brooklyn Decker and, well, the entire human race.

Presumably a boat will be involved.

I can smell the tagline from here: “Next Summer, B12 B10 isn’t Earth’s Lucky Number!”

2. Stretch Armstrong

Not everybody gets the popular toy to adapt. Ever own a Stretch Armstrong? Neither did I, but I have the concept down: he’s a guy, he’s stretchy. And he hasn’t been on store shelves in decades, so I imagine this is a movie designed to appeal to baby boomers nostalgia. And as Hasbro’s Bennett Schneir proclaims, the film will “find a real emotional connection and resonance” with the audience. And if that doesn’t work, perhaps the audience will find an emotional connection and resonance with Taylor Lautner’s pecs as the actor takes on the role of the superhero.

Lautner is carving quite a niche for himself as Hollywood’s go-to guy when it comes to expressionless, interminably t-shirt deprived protagonists.

3. Monopoly

Has anyone in the history of board games ever finished a round of Monopoly? Nope, never happened. Six hours in and eventually grandma snaps and tosses the whole board across the room. So for the game that never ends comes movie that will probably have a 9-hour long director’s cut.

This movie has been discussed for several years now. Originally, the Monopoly movie told the story of a guy who’s really good at Monopoly and one day wakes up in Monopoly City. Would he get to ride in the race car, or the thimble? Dramatic tension! Now Ridley Scott says the Monopoly movie will revolve around a greedy “Donald Trump”-type character who I’m guessing enjoys acquiring property and railroads.

That’s right, Ridley Scott is attached.

Remember when Ridley Scott was the director of Alien and Blade Runner? Any chance this Donald Trump character ends up being a replicant who lays his monster eggs in people’s chests?

4. View-Master

The action of watching a movie, at its base, is just looking at stuff. So making a movie about a toy that amounts to just looking at stuff is a natural. It’s looking at stuff about looking at stuff. Ooooo, meta.

The creators behind the inevitable View-Master movie, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, are keeping mum about plot specifics, possibly because there aren’t any. The movie's title on IMDb is Untitled View-Master Project (2012). Nonetheless, Orci and Kurtzman promise View-Master will follow in the vein of 80s classics like Goonies. Except, you know, you’ll have to watch it one frame at a time.

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April 4, 2011 - 10:04am
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