‘Addams Family’ Animated Movie Back in Development

Published 1 year ago by

Mortician and Gomez Addams Addams Family Animated Movie Back in Development

It’s been exactly twenty years since the release of Addam’s Family Values, the sequel to Men in Black 3 helmer Barry Sonnenfeld’s debut film as a director: 1991’s The Addams Family. The big-screen adaptation of the fondly remembered 1960’s TV series (which in turn was based on the morbidly funny one-panel New Yorker cartoons of Charles Addams) is arguably responsible for the TV-to-movie remake craze of the 90’s, and remains one of the best and most beloved of that particular genre.

While the two original films were successes, any hope of a threequel was put to rest after the death of the late, great Raul Julia (who played patriarch Gomez). A completely recast third film, Addam’s Family Reunion, was quietly punted to video and then forgotten. Talk of a 3D, stop-motion animated remake (in black and white) from Illumination Entertainment (the Despicable Me films) and directed by Tim Burton persisted, with a script from Burton’s Ed Wood writers, Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, but that project never happened.

Now, Variety reports that an animated version of The Addams Family is back from the dead, this time in the hands of MGM and will be written by Corpse Bride and Monster House screenwriter Pamela Pettler. There is currently no director attached.

The Addams Family2 Addams Family Animated Movie Back in Development

Sonnenfeld’s Addams films relied heavily on an over-the-top Gothic atmosphere, some sharp writing, and the charm of the actors – with Raul Julia, Anjelica Huston (as Morticia) and a young Christina Ricci (as Wednesday) being the standouts. They still hold up fairly well (with the original film still the better of the two), but neither those movies or the campy 60’s show were definitive in adapting Charles Addams’ wickedly dry sense of humor.

Given the dark-but-funny nature of his filmography, Tim Burton seemed like a perfect fit – on paper, at least. Burton’s departure from the project went essentially unnoticed, but it appeared to occur in the wake of the chilly critical and commercial reception of Dark Shadows and audience indifference toward FrankenweenieBurton has since moved on to the under-the-radar Big Eyes, a drama about the life of artist Margaret Keane, perhaps needing to move away from the cartoon worlds of his last few films.

The new caretaker of the Addams stories, Pamela Pettler, also wrote the screenplay for the beguiling 9, which couldn’t find an audience but remains an impressively dark and mature outing. Pettler’s voice could be an ideal outlet for an all-new rendering of the Addams, who still deserve a place in the deep, creepy cellars of our hearts.


The Addams Family is currently in development at MGM.

Source: Variety

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  1. For me, the 1960’s TV show, with John Astin, is still the best interpretation and production of the Addams Family.

    • Here, I’ll go even further re: Charles Addams and his cartoons: unique and a true great always! Knew how to tickle a funny bone and then bury it in the backyard afterwards!

  2. I loved the original cartoons and the TV series (the live-action was better to me than the animated variant) and thoroughly enjoyed the two films (first one was better, as a whole, but second had some truly brilliant moments), so this, at least, has me pleasantly curious.

    • By “original cartoons, I (obviously) mean the printed/illustrated source material.

      • Sigh…of course, CLOSE the quotation after CARTOONS.

      • you didn’t like the adams family animated series?

  3. I remember reading when they made the first movie that the director encouraged the attitude to keep everything “Adams”. As in everything needed to seem as close to how they acted in the series as possible. I don’t know who it was, but is one of the few who got it…. The series worked because of all the elements. So many movie attempts of old sitcoms have bombed because they didn’t get it. I wonder if this animation will?