Just today, July 19, Cartoon Network signed into a contract with Angry Filmworks producers Don Murphy and Susan Montford to put into development a live-action feature film version of Captain Planet, a beloved cartoon from the 90’s.
The following is the official press release from the network:
Producer of Transformers Film Trilogy Tapped to Create Movie Based on World’s First Eco-Hero
Cartoon Network has signed a development agreement with action-adventure producer Don Murphy and partner Susan Montford and their company Angry Filmworks to develop a live-action motion picture based on the groundbreaking, environment-saving animated hero, Captain Planet and the Planeteers, it was announced today by Stuart Snyder, president and COO of Turner Broadcasting System Inc.’s Animation, Young Adults and Kids Media division (AYAKM). The agreement gives Murphy and his company the exclusive rights to develop and package the property and advance it towards production.
Murphy and Angry Filmworks are most notably credited for the highly successful action-adventure franchise, Transformers (2007), Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009) and Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011). Murphy and Montford together produced the upcoming Hugh Jackman blockbuster Real Steel with Executive Producer Steven Spielberg. The company also is responsible for such action-oriented films as Shoot ‘Em Up (2007), The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003), Apt Pupil (1998) and Natural Born Killers (1994). Angry Filmworks formed in 1998.
“The messages of Captain Planet are even more relevant today,” said Snyder. “We feel this team can bring the world’s first eco-hero to life in a powerful motion picture that is not only pertinent but entertaining.”
“We are extremely excited about bringing the good Captain back to life,” said Murphy. “His adventures are known worldwide and he is recognized across generations. We expect to make a spectacular series of films with the amazing team at Cartoon Network.”
“With the earthquakes, tornadoes, melting icebergs and all the other problems threatening the world right now, Earth really needs her greatest defender,” said Montford.
In an effort to inform younger viewers about serious environmental issues, legendary cable entrepreneur Ted Turner partnered with DIC Enterprises in 1990 to create the world’s first animated environmental series, Captain Planet and the Planeteers. The series was about a group of young people who combine their special powers (The Planeteers) to summon Captain Planet, an environmental superhero, to battle the world’s worst eco-villains.
Captain Planet and the Planeteers premiered in fall 1990, airing domestically and internationally in syndication and on cable networks TBS and TNT. Six full seasons of the series were produced in the original run of the series, featuring the voice talents of multiple guest celebrities, including Whoopi Goldberg (Gaia), Meg Ryan (Dr. Blight), Martin Sheen (Sly Sludge), Edward Asner (Hoggish Greedly), James Coburn (Looten Plunder), Dean Stockwell (Duke Nukem) and Sting (Zarm). Winning multiple Environmental Media Awards across its production, Captain Planet and the Planeteers also scored several Daytime Emmy nominations.
Cartoon Network (CartoonNetwork.com), currently seen in more than 99 million U.S. homes and 166 countries around the world, is Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.’s ad-supported cable service now available in HD offering the best in original, acquired and classic entertainment for youth and families. Nightly from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. (ET, PT), Cartoon Network shares its channel space with Adult Swim, a late-night destination showcasing original and acquired animated and live-action comedy programming for young adults 18-34.
Though the concept from afar seems a little silly, Captain Planet captured a generation with its sincere messages, fun characters, and … oh yeah, there was a monkey! That helped too. Watch as five chosen teenagers are endowed with the powers of the elevemnts via their special rings. These rings were given to them by Gaia, the Spirit of the Earth, when she becomes troubled by the horrible damage that humans are causing to the planet. When these powers combine, the super-hero defender of Earth’s elements is released: Captain Planet himself. Join the internationally diverse Planeteers as they battle against environmentally irrisponsible corporations, pollutant-generated super-villians, and plain old litterbugs in an effort to keep the earth safe and healthy: Kwame from Africa (Earth), Wheeler from North America (Fire), Linka from (former) Soviet Union (Wind). Gi from Asia (Water) and Ma-Ti from South America (Heart – Yes, heart is an element).
As childhood favorites from Transformers to Thundercats get new life breathed into them through modern renditions, Captain Planet was hardly going to be left behind for long!