Movies featuring cute #mascots or furry little characters will always result in a deluge of toys hitting the market — don't make me remind you of the yellow tsunami that hit the shelves after the release of Minions. But if a studio is a little too impatient to wait for a movie to come out, become successful, and create a sudden craving for themed toothbrushes and endless supplies of printed socks, there's another way to make the marketing dollars rain in buckets, and that's producing a movie based on an existing toy.
After all, if the store already carries them, you can just hope that announcing a movie featuring a specific toy will put them back in the spotlight in no time. And so Paramount made a #MonsterTrucks movie, Legendary is planning a #HotWheels adventure, and now TWC-Dimension has announced a #Furby movie, just in time for #Christmas.
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The haunting toy, whose horror-movie doll eyes and sharp beak are supposed to depict an owl, was a hit in the late '90s, but despite several relaunch initiatives by Hasbro, after a while people started to realize they might not want a talking plush owl that is just more disturbing than cuddly.
'It Can't Just Be A 90-Minute Commercial'
TWC is certainly aiming to recreate the success of Paddington, the 2014 movie that brought to life the popular teddy bear. At the American Film Market where the project was announced, Hasbro's chief content officer, Stephen Davis, said this would be a family-friendly movie (four-quadrant movies are aimed at audiences both younger and older than 25, both male and female):
"We think that this can resonate as a four-quadrant film. It can't just be a 90-minute commercial."
We're glad that despite seeming like they just blindly picked a toy from a chest of unsold goods recovered at some old man's yard sale, the team behind the haunting idea of a Furby movie still retains some sense of creative expectations. Yet, this seems like a missed opportunity to make a fabulous horror movie featuring Furbys with their heads turning at 360° and their eyes opening and closing with an ominous clicking sound. It's too bad, because the Furby/Ouija board combo packs would have been an absolute hit in stores.
While we don't know anything more about the movie than the fact that it's going to be a live-action/CGI hybrid — do we need more details, really? — even Hasbro executive Josh Feldman is aware that this isn't the kind of project that's going to make the top of his resume. Asked if the movie already had a director attached, he laughed:
"We're out to David Fincher."
The first rule of the Furby movie? You do not talk about the Furby movie.
Do you enjoy movies featuring popular toys?