Jack Black to Headline New Gulliver's Travels Adaptation
by Kevin Powers
November 6, 2008
I imagine most of our readers have some familiarity with the classic tale of "Gulliver's Travels", the adventures of Lemuel Gulliver as penned by Jonathan Swift back in 1726. The most recognized of the four part story is Part I, where Gulliver washes ashore in the country of Lilliput wherein the inhabitants are a mere six inches tall. Variety is reporting that Fox has greenlit an adaptation of this well-known tale with Jack Black assuming the role of the skyscraper-tall Gulliver. Director Rob Letterman (of only Shark Tale and the upcoming Monsters vs Aliens) will update the tale a bit, having Gulliver as a travel writer on assignment in the Bermuda Triangle when he comes across the hidden island of tiny people.
The other country involved in the original tale is a rival to Lilliput called Blefuscu. Gulliver is welcomed into the country and initially aides the Lilliputians by taking the Blefuscudians fleet. Eventually, Gulliver disagrees with the king of Lilliput, refusing to further oppress Blefuscu, and is charged with treason.
Now, whether Letterman will adhere to much of the original material is yet-to-be-seen. While "Gulliver's Travels" was originally intended as a satire of human nature and the British monarchy, I have a feeling Black's involvement takes the film towards a more humorous, slap-stick direction. Further proof: Forgetting Sarah Marshall director Nicholas Stoller and Shrek scribe Joe Stillman wrote this screenplay. I can just see Black (and his noteworthy belly) tripping and crushing mass areas of Lilliput. Since this news is pretty fresh, there's no word on the rest of the cast, such as who might play the kings of the two countries.