With the rapidly expanding animation space in Hollywood, we greet many, many, many new animated characters on a regular basis. We love their idiosyncrasies, their peculiar voices, their outfits, their strange ambitions, their differently shaped vehicles, we simply enjoy every bit of newness that they bring to our lives. And yet in such a time when each month throws a new set of animated characters to meet and greet, the classics never lose their charm. The classic comic strips specifically from where it seems to have all begun. And one such classic that needs no introduction is the famous comic strip written and illustrated by Charles Schulz titled Peanuts. Ah yes, Peanuts. The name itself brings a big warm smile, doesn’t it? Having run from October 2, 1950, to February 13, 2000, it remains one of the most popular comic strips ever. And one of the most influential too. So when Blue Sky Studios decided to bring a full-length feature film out in 2015, boy oh boy, weren’t we excited! Now the cynics would come up and scream “they will destroy the heritage”, but eh, we don’t judge so soon. Here are five good enough reasons to be excited for this upcoming November 2015 release.
1. The movie Peanuts would be the first full-length feature film on Charlie Brown and gang in almost a quarter of a century. The previous film Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (and Don’t Come Back!!) had been released back in 1980. And of the four full-length feature films released previously, none of them would be of the scale of the upcoming Peanuts which is the first computer-animated film adapted from the comic series. That is reason enough to be excited for any Peanuts fan!
2. The film is releasing in 2015, which would be the 65th anniversary year since the comic strip came to life. This would also mark 15 years since the passing away of Schulz who died in his sleep only a day before his final Peanuts strip was to be published. For that man alone, who worked with such passion and dedication on his beloved Peanuts strip for half a century, a movie ticket needs to be purchased. Oh, and we may just get Charlie Brown kicking a football this time… or not. When Schulz was asked if, for his final Peanuts strip, Charlie Brown would finally get to kick the football, he famously replied, “Oh, no! Definitely not! I couldn’t have Charlie Brown kick that football; that would be a terrible disservice to him after nearly half a century.” Who would want to go against Schulz’s wishes, eh!?
3. The movie is in the good hands of director Steve Martino. Martino has co-directed two full-length feature films prior to Peanuts, both of which were animated films. The first was the 2008 film Horton Hears a Who! which was witty, enjoyable and like a breath of fresh air. The second Martino directed movie was 2012’s Ice Age: Continental Drift, which was the fourth film of the franchise and hence suffered from the syndrome of repetitiveness, but despite that it was a roaring box-office success. Steve Martino thus seems to be a guy who knows what he is doing, and how to make it work. Things should click too for Peanuts.
4. While the main source for the film’s plot would of course be the comic strips of Charles Schulz, the writing team for the movie includes names that may evoke a bit of sentimentality for the fans. That of Craig Schulz and Bryan Schulz who are Charles Schulz’s son and grandson, respectively. Craig Schulz has in fact been involved in the entertainment business, mainly in the art department for certain TV shows like True Blood. Joining this writing team is also Cornelius Uliano. This group is also involved as producers for the film along with Paul Feig who knows a thing or two about getting things right, having delivered the recent Sandra Bullock hit film The Heat.
5. And finally, Blue Sky Studios have released a very early short teaser for the film. The sight of Charlie Brown and Snoopy would easily bring a smile to your face, and that smile would stay with you throughout the brief teaser trailer. It is the joy of watching two old chums again, two characters we have read and read so many times that we sigh on their sight as if we are meeting our old friends. And maybe friends they are, for haven’t they brought that sparkle in your eyes and that smile to your face when you were feeling a bit sad? Haven’t they amused you without necessarily wanting to; haven’t even their mundane activities brought cheer and made you look at life with a fresh interest? Our friends they definitely are. And we will meet them soon. You bet!