Universal Pictures has just acquired a pitch for The Nutcracker, a new version of the classic tale. The live-action adventure movie comes from John Mann and Jon Gunn, and Heat Vision reports that Peter Chernin and Dylan Clark (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) will produce. This version of the story will focus on a 12-year-old girl who receives a Nutcracker doll from her clockmaker-inventor grandfather on Christmas Eve. She then embarks on an adventure that night that includes a war featuring “a seven-headed Mouse King and his army of mice, curses and themes of ugliness and beauty.” No other plot details are known, but it appears that Universal is planning on a big-budget adventure movie.
Is Paramount making a movie based on Mattel’s Magic 8-Ball? “All signs point to yes.” Is it a movie that seems like a good idea? “Very doubtful.” Deadline reports that the studio is using the ball-you-shake-for-answers (no, the other one) as the basis for a live-action adventure film. Paramount has hired Jon Gunn and John Mann to write a script. Presumably, they won’t have the movie end with someone cracking open the 8-Ball to discover blue liquid along with a metal 20-sided die, and then moving on with their day. Gunn and Mann also wrote the upcoming DreamWorks Animation film, Alcatraz vs. The Evil Librarians because it’s fun when you just throw words together to make a title.
Paramount is also developing Mattel’s Max Steel. Mattel’s Tim Kilpin and Barry Waldo are exec producers.