Good Grief! Peanuts Cartoon Gang Hitting Theaters in 2015

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Peanuts Film

Peanuts Film

Twen­ti­eth Cen­tury Fox Ani­ma­tion and its Blue Sky Stu­dios unit have acquired rights to make a fea­ture film based on the late Charles Schulz’s beloved and iconic Peanuts fran­chise, Twen­ti­eth Cen­tury Fox Ani­ma­tion pres­i­dent Vanessa Mor­ri­son announced Tuesday.

The agree­ment is the cul­mi­na­tion of over two years of dis­cus­sions — focused on the film’s cre­ative direc­tion — between the stu­dio and mem­bers of the Schulz family.

The as yet unti­tled ani­mated event will be released on Novem­ber 25, 2015. The year 2015 will mark the 65th anniver­sary of the debut of the Peanuts comic strip and the 50th anniver­sary of the land­mark TV spe­cial A Char­lie Brown Christ­mas.

Charles Schulz drew the most pop­u­lar and influ­en­tial comic strip of all time, which was read every day by 355 mil­lion peo­ple in 75 coun­tries. In addi­tion to the famous strip, such Peanuts hol­i­day tele­vi­sion spe­cials as It’s The Great Pump­kin, Char­lie Brown have won Emmys and con­tinue to be among the highest-rated prime time TV specials.

Steve Mar­tino will direct the Peanuts fea­ture; pre­vi­ously, he brought to the big screen (with Jimmy Hay­ward) Fox/Blue Sky’s Dr. Seuss’ Hor­ton Hears a Who! Mar­tino also directed (with Michael Thurmeier) Fox’s recent box-office smash Ice Age: Con­ti­nen­tal Drift.

The screen­play is by Craig Schulz and the writ­ing team of Bryan Schulz and Cor­nelius Uliano. Craig Schulz and Bryan Schulz, respec­tively Charles Schulz’s son and grand­son, along with Uliano, are producing.

Also play­ing a key role in the deal was Neil Cole, CEO and pres­i­dent of Iconix Brand Group, which, in a joint ven­ture with Charles M. Schulz Cre­ative Asso­ciates, formed Peanuts World­wide, the home to the global Peanuts prop­erty, in 2010.

Twen­ti­eth Cen­tury Fox Ani­ma­tion direc­tor of devel­op­ment Ralph Millero worked closely with Mor­ri­son and with the Schulz estate in secur­ing the rights to the property.

Com­mented Mor­ri­son: “We are thrilled to part­ner with the Schulz fam­ily and Iconix and hon­ored to bring the Peanuts char­ac­ters to the big screen. This all started with our love and respect for the work of Charles Schulz. We thank the Schulz fam­ily and Iconix for let­ting Fox and Blue Sky bring his vision to new gen­er­a­tions of filmgoers.”

Said Craig Schulz, pres­i­dent, of Charles M. Schulz Cre­ative Asso­ciates: “We have been work­ing on this project for years. We finally felt the time was right and the tech­nol­ogy is where we need it to be to cre­ate this film. I am thrilled we will be part­ner­ing with Blue Sky/Fox to cre­ate a Peanuts movie that is true to the strip and will con­tinue the legacy in honor of my father.”

This is a momen­tous step for the Peanuts brand. The beloved char­ac­ters Snoopy, Char­lie Brown and the whole gang res­onate with mul­ti­ple gen­er­a­tions all over the world,” com­mented Cole. “This film will give us a new medium in which to engage con­sumers glob­ally and show­case the power of the Peanuts brand,” he added.

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