Over the years there have been many versions of the classic Tarzan story, from the original Tarzan of the Apes book written back in 1912 to book sequels, movies, radio and TV series, stage plays, video games and comic books – all in all there’s been over a hundred(!) incarnations of the Tarzan lore over the years.
So it’s not surprise to find out that there’s yet another version of Tarzan on the way, this time in 3D animated form (it’s not clear if that means it’ll be in stereoscopic 3D). Variety reports that a German company, Constantin Film, are developing the new Tarzan flick after the studio acquired the rights to the Tarzan series from the estate of author Edgar Rice Burroughs.
There are no real details on which direction this particular version of Tarzan will take, although at this point there’s nothing to suggest that it would diverge drastically from the original story. Tarzan was, “born in the jungles of Africa to a stranded English aristocratic couple. When they are killed, the infant is adopted and raised by a clan of apes. He discovers his true origins when he comes upon the cabin of his late parents.”
This isn’t the only new Tarzan movie on the way – a live-action version has been in the works for a while, which originally had Guillermo del Toro attached to direct. The the last we heard, Stephen Sommers (G.I. Joe) was helming that project. Despite the two projects differing in form (3D animated versus live-action), this is still yet another case of two different studios attempting to make their own version of the same story. Will audiences favor the live-action or the animated version?
The last truly successful Tarzan project (in terms of profits) was the Disney 2D animated film from 1999. It grossed almost $450 million, which just goes to show that there’s still interest in the character. Yes, that was over a decade ago and it was Disney who made it, but it’s still an impressive level of success nonetheless.
Tarzan is one of those timeless characters who can be adapted a million times and there would still be potential for something exciting or interesting to be made. I don’t know if this 3D animated version will be the film to bring out the best in the character (I’m picturing more of a silly animated film only kids will enjoy) but I suppose, like most other projects, it deserves a chance to prove itself.