Don’t worry, Warner Bros. Pictures isn’t bringing back Mike Myers’ version of “The Cat in the Hat,” but the franchise is returning to theaters. This time around the film will be animated, and Warner Bros. is hoping that this installment will be the launch of a new franchise. While it missed the mark with critics, the 2003 CGI adaption with Myers was a financial success for Universal Pictures. The film opened at number-one at the box-office with a $38M debut, and went on to make over $133M worldwide.
Earlier today Warner Animation Group, the animated film production arm of Warner Bros. Pictures, announced a new creative partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. to produce multiple feature films based on the iconic characters and stories created by Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel). Toby Emmerich, Chairman, Warner Bros. Pictures Group and Susan Brandt, President of Dr. Seuss Enterprises, made the announcement.
A fully animated version of the children’s classic “The Cat in the Hat” will be the first project developed under this partnership, and if everything goes well, the Cat is only the begining.
“Our Pictures Group is home to some of the world’s most popular film franchises, and we’re honored to add Dr. Seuss titles to that roster,” said Emmerich. “With Warner Animation Group, we’ve really revitalized our feature animation activities, and this partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises will continue our move into world-class, wide-appeal animated fare.”
“For generations, Dr. Seuss has entertained and delighted children and adults alike with his whimsical tales,” said Brandt. “Our partnership with Warner Animation Group continues those efforts by reimagining the beloved characters and stories for theater-going audiences, while keeping the integrity of Dr. Seuss’s vision intact.”
Allison Abbate, Executive Vice President, Warner Animation Group, will manage the DSE partnership on behalf of the Studio. WAG is currently in the process of assembling a team of writers, producers and directors for the Seuss projects.
“I could not be more excited about the opportunity to work on films based on Dr. Seuss’ wildly creative and iconic works,” said Abbate. “Everybody knows and loves these characters, and the fun part of making these films will be staying true to the Seuss sensibilities while finding a dynamic cinematic expression of their beloved stories. We can’t wait to get started.”
WAG titles currently in production include “Smallfoot” (slated for release September 28, 2018), “The LEGO Movie Sequel” (February 8, 2019) and “S.C.O.O.B.” (May 15, 2020). The division also has a number of animated and live-action/hybrid titles in development.