Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Some HUGE Peanuts news!



There is some exciting news this week about Charlie Brown's past and future animated adventures.  

But first, let me go back to last month.  Reddit hosted a chat with Jeannie Schulz, the widow of Peanuts creator Charles Schulz.  I asked her if there were any plans to release Race For Your Life, Charlie Brown or Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (And Don't Come Back) on dvd.  These theatrical movies were released on VHS in the 1990s but have now been out of print for years.  Here's Jeannie's response:

"You know, I don't know any plans, and it's terrible, because I have a distant relative in France who LOVES that movie. The rights to them are owned by - and now my mind is going blank... it's the company that we did them with originally... and they don't, I guess, have any interest in exploiting them? And i suppose from their point of view, it's too small a market, so they might sell 1,000 or 5,000 but in their world, you need to sell 10,000. I don't know. I can't think of the company that owns the rights to that, I'm sorry. So it's a shame, because I think they are fun, and even though the animation is old-fashioned, and people would say they are slow-moving compared to today, I still think there are people who would enjoy them."

This was very disappointing news to a fan like myself.  But the other day, I learned that Jeannie Schulz was mistaken.  Paramount is releasing both films on dvd next year!  Race For Your Life comes out on dvd on February 10, here's the cover art:



Bon Voyage celebrates its 35th anniversary next year and will be released on dvd in October 2015.  


Original 1980 movie poster for Bon Voyage.
But that's not the only news.  We are now less than a year removd from the release date (November 6) for the new Peanuts movie.  Yesterday, some new images from the film were released.


It's too soon to tell if the story will be good. But producer Paul Feig says that Charlie Brown goes "on a quest to get something he's sure he needs, even though he discovers he's pretty OK just as he is." Director Steve Martini stated that Snoopy will be putting on his old World War I Flying Ace helmet and going behind enemy lines.    



As I was getting ready to publish this, I learned that another trailer for the movie has been released, so here it is:
video




I'm not crazy about the song in the middle (I doubt it will be there when the movie is released), but the animation looks great!  2015 is shaping up to be a great year for fans of Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the gang.

J.A.


 

Monday, November 17, 2014

'You're At The Comic Con, Charlie Brown!'

No, that's not a title of a forthcoming Charlie Brown special (though it would be a lot of fun!), but it's a good way to begin my very, extremely belated look-back at the Richmond Wizard World Comic-Con.  You can find a more in-depth report at my sister blog, Holiday Film Reviews.  It was the first time I ever attended an event of that size and it was lots of fun.  Wizard knows how to throw a great party! 

Like any comic-con, there were lots of great cosplayers in attendance.  We saw a bunch of superheroes, Star Wars villains and Lord Of The Rings characters.  I figure "when in Rome", so I decided to get into the act and dress as a certain "round-headed kid.":


While walking around the Con, "Chuck" attracted attention wherever he went.  I was stopped by quite a few people who wanted to get their picture taken with Charlie Brown, including:

"Wash" from the series Firefly tv series:


Catwoman:


The Tick:


And Gamorra, daughter of Thanos and a Guardian of the Galaxy!:


I'll be honest, after donning the bald wig & yellow shirt, I was a little nervous about how "Chuck" would be received.  Would Charlie Brown be appreciated by hundreds of people dressed as Asgardian gods, zombies and Dothraki?  The answer was a resounding YES!  Everywhere I went, people yelled out "Hey, it's Charlie Brown!!" and sent smiles in my direction.  Which is a very good sign, with 2015 being Chuck's 65th anniversary and a new Peanuts movie in the works.   

And I was happy to see that I was not the only one dressed up as a "old school" comic strip character:

"Dick Tracy" and "Charlie Brown", together again for the first time!
But my favorite pictures of all were taken at the Rolling Dead Zombie Tech booth.  They are super-fans of The Walking Dead tv series and built a motorcycle inspired by the one Daryl Dixon rides.


If you are fan of The Walking Dead, check out the Rolling Dead's Facebook page, here.

I don't think Lucy would pull the football away from this guy: