Anyone will tell you, writing scripts is hard. Then when you’re done, getting anyone to read it is even harder. That’s why the real movers and shakers of Hollywood just bypass the process altogether and get movies greenlit based on board games or breakfast cereals. And today we’ve entered an even braver, newer world, now that New Line is developing a project based on a one-frame illustration (pictured below). Basically, The Rock’s former assistant was stoned trolling DeviantArt one night, found an illustration he liked, brought it to The Rock and the director of Journey 2, they got it in production at New Line, and bingo bango, some screenwriter now has the worst job since the guy who had to write Bazooka Joe.
The picture in question was drawn by Alex Panagopoulos, a Greek software engineer turned fantasy artist.
Very typical of the Greek economy.
It features a little girl asleep in bed while a small brown teddy bear — brandishing a laughably small wooden sword and shield — holds an enormous, fanged monster at bay. And in the fashion of a motivational poster, a caption reads “Teddy Bears: Protecting innocent children from monsters under the bed since 1902.” (The teddy bear was invented in 1902 by Morris Michtom, who was inspired by a political cartoon featuring President Theodore Roosevelt and a bear he refused to shoot.)
Speaking of which, when are we getting a Teddy Roosevelt movie? That guy busted trusts, shot Spaniards on horse back, rode moose across rivers, and gave an 80-minute speech after getting shot in the chest with a .38 from point-blank range. Teddy Roosevelt makes Abe Lincoln look like a doddering eunuch.
Oh right, I suppose you want to see the picture.
Hiram Garcia, a former assistant to Johnson, found the illustration [on DeviantArt] and brought it to Beau Flynn’s FlynnPictureCo and New Line. The company, Flynn and Johnson together made the 2012 family adventure movie Journey 2: The Mysterious Island. Johnson, Flynn and Garcia will produce what is tentatively called Teddy Bear. No writer is attached and the story’s take is being kept secret, but New Line is hoping to launch a big four-quadrant franchise. They no doubt were emboldened by the megahit bear comedy Ted, which made more than $500 million worldwide for Universal last summer. [THR]
Well sure, that movie had a teddy bear, this movie will probably have a teddy bear – what could go wrong? And after all, they say a picture is worth a thousand words. What’s a movie script, 20, 25 thousand words? Easy peasy. Of course, someone already made A Thousand Words and it was a huge flop, so your results may very.
If you’re going to make a movie based on a single image (and please, do not make a movie based on a single image)… couldn’t it at least be this one?