Thundercats to the CGI Screen

Thundercats Ho! Do you remember Thundercats from the 80's? I do. I thought Lion-O's sword, The Sword of Omens, which he used to summon the team and do battle with Mumm-Ra and his minions was totally cool. I also liked Panthro's cool toys and Cheetara's speed.

In case you don't know who / what the Thundercats are, they are a group of cats in humanoid shape that fled their home planet of Thundera after it was destroyed. After escaping that catastrophe, they rename the planet on which they landed 'Third Earth.' They must also constantly defend themselves from the evil sorcerer Mumm-Ra who is hell bent on destroying them.

In June of 2007, it was reported that Warner Bros. optioned a script by Paul Sopocy with the intent of making it into a movie. Paula Weinstein was lined up to produce the film via her Spring Creek Productions logo with Jerry O'Flaherty to direct, in hopes of taking advantage of his time in video game art direction for games like Gears of War as an edge in directing this CGI based film.

Yep - you read right. They've chosen to go with the idea of animation for the new film that is starting to build momentum towards it's rumored release date of 2010.

The latest news about the project is being reported over on They say the concept artist being hired for Thundercats is Charlie Wen, who has previous visual work as the Visual Development Director for the critically-acclaimed video game God of War II.

Wen confirms this with an entry on his own blog: "took an Art Directing/Character Designing gig on Thundercats."

The script was written as an origins story line centered around Lion-O coming of age and is Sopocy's first studio script sale as a screenwriter. His "day job" is senior writer, print advertising, at Fox Broadcasting Co., and he has some previous short film stories under his belt, including Staring at the Sun which screened at the Sundance Film Festival in 2005.

The Thundercats franchise has spurred a number of animated series, toy lines and comic books. Warner Bros. has owned the rights to the animated series since acquiring Telepictures Corp. in 1989.

If you know you've watched Thundercats in your younger days, but can't quite remember it, or you'd just like to see the opening sequence just one more time for old time's sake, here you go:

Other Sources: VarietyThanks to Mark Sheard of ThunderCatsLair for the pointer and Ricardo Chahad for the image.

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