Paramount and Hasbro are developing a new G.I. Joe live-action movie spinoff. The G.I. Joe multimedia brand is one of Hasbro's most popular and longest-running IPs, having already been adapted for everything from comic books to multiple animated TV series, and even a pair of live-action movies (released in 2009 and 2013). And while neither of the feature films were well-received critically, they earned enough at the global box office ($678 million combined) to keep Paramount and Hasbro coming back for more.
At the moment, the studios are pushing forward with a Snake Eyes solo film that has Robert Schwentke (RED, Allegiant) attached to direct and a tentative October 16, 2020 release date. According to a new report, however, they're also developing a spinoff film that will feature a G.I. Joe character who has yet to make the leap to live-action (unlike Snake Eyes, who was played by Ray Park in G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra and G.I. Joe: Retaliation).
According to THR, Paramount and Hasbro have set writers Josh Appelbaum and André Nemec (Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2014) to work on an as-yet untitled G.I. Joe spinoff movie. The film will reportedly include Chuckles, a character who was introduced in the G.I. Joe action figures toyline and Marvel Comics in 1987, and is known for being an expert at infiltration and going undercover. However, the outlet warns that Chuckles could be dropped as the project takes shape.
It's been over three years now since Paramount and Hasbro announced the Hasbro Film Universe writing team, but they've yet to get a Hasbro-verse off the ground. They're clearly still trying, though, and have since launched an in-house movie division - Allspark Pictures - and started pre-production on a few projects based on their best-selling IPs. Snake Eyes will, in theory, be the first one out of the gate, followed by a Micronauts film and Dungeons & Dragons movie reboot in 2021. It's not clear who's working on Micronauts right now, but Game Night directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein entered talks to direct the D&D reboot about two weeks ago. The pair will also work on the script with lesser-known Michael Grillo, should they sign on.
As for G.I. Joe - Retaliation was only a modest commercial success at best, and Rise of Cobra couldn't even double its $175 million budget worldwide. Hasbro and Paramount are banking on third time being the charm then, seeing as neither of their previous attempts to get a live-action G.I. Joe series fully up and running panned out. Snake Eyes is a popular character, though, so his solo film may yet deliver the goods, financially-speaking. Similarly, Appelbaum and Nemec have a pretty decent track record when it comes to giving flailing franchises a new lease on life at the box office, and may yet do the same with G.I. Joe. If they can't, then it may be time to retire Joe from the big screen for good.