Where the Wild Things Are in Deep Trouble

Posted on November 29, 2008

Screen shot from Where the Wild Things Are

The film version of the classic children's book Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak has reportedly run into big trouble. CHUD reported that Warner Bros is so unhappy with director Spike Jonzes' footage that the entire film may be reshot. In fact at a test screening children were crying and running from the theater: not exactly the reaction Warner Bros was hoping for.

So, what's the problem? For one thing, the lead is apparently quite unlikeable. Dave Eggers' screenplay has been described as subversive, dark and frightening, none of which are things that lead to box office gold for children's movies. There are also major special effects problems. Oscar-winning special effects wizard Howard Berger told Sci Fi Wire that he turned down the chance to do the film because he knew it was going to be a problem the way Jonze wanted to film it. In Jonze's version, the film uses computer-generated animation and animatronics, with some of the characters in giant suits made of foam, which sounds just awful. And apparently, it is just awful.

When Howard Berger says not to do the special effects a certain way, it's probably a good idea to listen to him. We loved Where the Wild Things Are. The thought of a version that makes children run screaming from the theater is quite off-putting, to say the least.

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