Will the Live-Action 'Captain Planet' Film Have the Guts to Take on Climate Change?


Image credit: Andertoons via Flickr/CC BY
Captain Planet will be the latest beloved children's cartoon to get the live action film treatment -- and from the producer of the bafflingly successful 'Transformers' movie franchise no less! So one thing's for certain: A ton of people are going to see this film.Here are the details from MTV news:

Cartoon Network and "Transformers" producer Don Murphy and partner Susan Montford's Angry Filmworks are teaming together with "Transformers" producer to make a live action film about the environmentalist hero.

"The messages of Captain Planet are even more relevant today," said Stuart Snyder, president and COO of Turner Broadcasting System Inc.'s Animation, Young Adults and Kids Media division, in a press release. "We feel this team can bring the world's first eco-hero to life in a powerful motion picture that is not only pertinent but entertaining."

"With the earthquakes, tornadoes, melting icebergs and all the other problems threatening the world right now, Earth really needs her greatest defender," added Montford.

The producers also said that they expect to make a "spectacular series" of films, so they're certainly looking to start up another franchise here. There's no word as to whether the modern day Captain Planet will be donning the trademark red speedo and green mullet that made him look more like a cartoon beach volleyball pro than a superhero.

It will be interesting to see what the screenwriters select as the plot device: It has to be something sufficiently large-scale and universally threatening ... the show typically dealt with real(ish) environmental woes like toxic pollution and radioactive waste. What do you think they'll come up with for the big screen? Will the studio have the balls to make global warming (or the nefarious polluting corporations that are causing it) the villain, given its "controversial" status in our political culture? Seems unlikely.

In fact, here's a pitch to anyone at Cartoon Network or whatever other studios may get involved: if you intelligently address global climate change in your film, I'll not only take everyone I know to your film on opening day, and write an article about it, but I'd organize a series of 'Captain Planet'-themed green events across New York City that would get your film some great free press. I'd also offer to dress up like Captain Planet, replete with aforementioned mullet and speedo, if I thought for a second that would entice rather than repel potential viewers.

Your move, Captain Planet filmmakers.

Join me in the good green fight. Follow me on Twitter, and check out The Utopianist.
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Tags: Movies

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