Sony Pictures Animation has picked up the rights to the Manimal movie, and is developing the project as a live action/CG hybrid film, reports The Hollywood Reporter
The short-lived 1983 NBC series followed Dr. Jonathan Chase; a wealthy doctor with a mysterious past, who morphed into animals in order to help the police fight crime. Sounds good, right? Unfortunately, the critics didn’t think so, and the show, which starred Brit Simon MacCorkindale and Melody Anderson, was an unmitigated disaster, receiving little praise and awful reviews. Perhaps going toe-to-toe with Dallas, one of the biggest shows of all time and back then, the most watched thing on TV, didn’t help Manimal’s cause. But having been cancelled after just eight episodes back in the 80’s, the animal metamorphic crime drama is set to be incarnated by the guys at Sony.
Sony have a good pedigree for revamping vintage shows; their reworking of The Smurfs ended up grossing $500 million, but then the little blue guys were already an established franchise, and with Katy Perry on board, you’re probably guaranteed a fair amount of that impressive haul. The Smurfs is set for a sequel next summer, but Sony will have to get all their creative juices flowing to make Manimals a Smurf-like success story.