See Animation Tests for 'Hong Kong Phooey' & 'Marvin the Martian'
Over a year ago, Alcon Entertainment announced that Eddie Murphy would be lending his voice to the titular character in the live-action/CG hybrid adaptation of Hanna-Barbera's 1970's animated series Hong Kong Phooey. And three years earlier, Warner Bros. decided to utilize their rights to the Looney Tunes library, capitalize on the trend of families buying into the live-action/CG hybrid adaptations of cartoons like Alvin and the Chipmunks and The Smurfs, and bring Marvin the Martian to the big screen. However, now it seems like both those projects are dead as director Alex Zamm has posted animation test footage for both of these films, and that likely wouldn't happen if both the projects were still happening. See here!
We're not entirely sure if this means these projects are already dead (maybe Speedy Gonzales and Bugs Bunny are too?) or if Zamm is just no longer working on them. Either way, it's interesting to see this footage come out now. Maybe it's a ploy to try and drum up interest so the studio can see if they should move forward. With the Hong Kong Phooey footage, that's definitely someone impersonating Eddie Murphy, but you get a good idea of how his voice would work with this character, and his interaction with Spot the cat. Sadly, it's a lot of low brow humor, and doesn't seem like there's a lot of cleverness in this potential idea.
However, with Marvin the Martian, rather than crafting a couple of scenes with the character, they've gone the classic Looney Tunes route and made a short with the character. Not only that, but it's a Christmas short that uses the Home Alone Soundtrack and everything. This one is actually a little more tolerable because it has flares of the classic cartoon (there's even a reference to the Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator), and the animation doesn't look at weird because Marvin doesn't need to look like any real-life animal. I could easily see this playing before a Warner Bros. family movie and playing just fine.
If I had to choose, I'd rather see Marvin the Martian come back to life and get off the ground. But perhaps it would also be cool to see another Space Jam type film that brings back all the Looney Tunes in this live-action/CG hybrid form (they've come close with the new 3D shorts). After all, Jenny Slate of "Saturday Night Live" and Marcel the Shell with Shoes On is already working on a script for a new Looney Tunes film. Of course, Space Jam worked just fine with the 2D and live-action combination, so it's not really necessary.
Reader Feedback - 21 Comments
Those were both painful to watch...
Matt Peloquin on Dec 28, 2012
According to the Smurfs director, that means they should go ahead with production on 2 films.
Commenter on Dec 28, 2012
Holy. FUCK. That was terrible animation. Terrible, terrible, terrible, terrible animation.... Terrible.
Pickle t1ts on Dec 28, 2012
The HKP clip was too much, but MTM I could definitely see getting picked up.
Big Boss on Dec 28, 2012
I'd rather die then watch a HKP movie if it turns out like that.
BK on Dec 28, 2012
Why do they have to make this a hybrid? I'm totally open to fully CG animated movie, but this hybrid, MTM, HKP, scooby-doo, smurf stuff has got to end.
Danimal on Dec 28, 2012
Manuel on Dec 28, 2012
Not happy with either one, but if I "had" to choose, it would be the Marvin one. Stick to full CGI, stop doing the "space jam" type stuff.
Michael McRorey on Dec 28, 2012
I'm sure it will be a big hit with toddlers and parents with no taste
syntaxterror on Dec 28, 2012
If I was a parent I'd take my kid to see this, it's not about having taste.
Kwaz on Dec 28, 2012
you'd be taking your kid aka a toddler... so yeah that was part of my reasoning. Would you want to see it for the movie itself or just go along because your kid wants to see it? There's a difference
syntaxterror on Dec 28, 2012
They look like shorts.
MXAGhost on Dec 28, 2012
Marvin was epic...rather it'd be traditional animation though.
Xerxexx on Dec 28, 2012
agreed with the epic, if they changed out the kid for someone more tolerable they can pull off an actual movie with him......
Jericho on Dec 28, 2012
Indeed...perhaps a female lead like Chloe Moretz or one of the kids from Super 8.
Xerxexx on Dec 28, 2012
i'm so tired of almost all kids movies relying on ball jokes! do kids really need to see people getting hit in the balls ? i refuse to take my kid to movies that show nutshots in the trailer
astroboy3000 on Dec 28, 2012
Both of these are terrible! So glad WB put an end to this misery. But honestly couldn't they tell this would be horrible before they spent all this money on this crap? And what's with the kid actor? He has no charisma. Damn. I'm pissed I even watched these tests.
Green Lantern on Dec 29, 2012
The gingerbread man screaming as he flew from the tree? That's funny. Not sophisticated funny....Shrek funny.
Tyler Morgan on Dec 29, 2012
That kid sure had a punchable face.
Nielsen700 on Dec 29, 2012
The irony is, if an independent CG artist made these shorts, fanboys would be screaming: "WB, you gotta make this!"
Mithun Divakaran on Dec 30, 2012
These look brilliant I'd love to see both of these projects in the cinema and if this is a ploy to drum up interest it has worked on me and especially my fiancee she is a big Looney Tunes fan and if Marvin came out and was a success we hope there will be more Looney Tunes live action movies like this.
Carl Traill on Dec 30, 2012
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