Imagine if the toys of ‘Toy Story’ entered the world of Tim Burton’s ‘Alice In Wonderland’ to save Andy from Oogie Boogie from ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’. That’s the first thing that came to mind when I first read the exclusive from Deadline about Disney making a pre-emptive pitch deal to adapt the graphic novel by Mike Raicht & Brian Smith called ‘The Stuff of Legend’.
Here’s what the story is actually about:
A young boy in 1944 is abducted by the Boogeyman, dragged by the ankles into the closet realm known as The Dark. The boy’s puppy rallies his toys to follow his master in a rescue mission. Once in the closet, each of those toys become menacingly large and agile creatures who engage in a war with the Boogeyman’s forces. Those armies are comprised of the other toys stored in the closet, a mix of medieval knights, cowboys and toy soldiers.
Pete Candeland, who is best known for his commercials, Gorillaz music videos, and the opening for the ‘Beatles Rock Band’ video game, is attached to direct, with ‘Abduction’ writer Shawn Christensen working on the script. This is also Candeland’s second movie in the works at Disney because he recently made a deal to bring the beloved Disneyland attraction ‘Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride’ to the big screen.
After working on the pitch and visual presentation for a year, Candeland and Christensen presented the project to The House of Mouse with the idea that the film would be live-action, but set in a CGI world, similar to Tim Burton’s ‘Alice In Wonderland’.
‘The Stuff of Legend’ sounds a bit darker than what we’re used to from Disney when Tim Burton isn’t involved, but I think it sounds like a great movie. Even though some people had big complaints about ‘Alice In Wonderland’, it’s hard to deny that it was visually stunning, and I could see that style, mixed with a bit of the Narnia films, working very well for this movie.