Warner Bros.’ Tom & Jerry movie has added Ken Joeng and Rob Delaney to the cast. Joeng and Delaney’s addition to the slate rounds out an impressive ensemble that includes Chloe Grace Moretz, Colin Jost, and Michael Pena.
Starting as short films in the 1940s, Tom & Jerry eventually made its way into a Saturday morning slot in 1965. The cat-vs-mouse antics became iconic and joined the ranks of beloved cartoons like The Jetsons, Scooby-Doo, and The Flintstones. And now, a live-action/animated hybrid film is in the works. Tom & Jerry will be helmed by director Tim Story, who’s no stranger to action, thanks to the Fantastic Four and the reboot of Shaft. Unlike the 1992 feature film version, the titular duo will remain silent, leaving their actions and facial expressions to tell the tale. With shenanigans taking place in a live-action world, the film will follow Kayla (Grace), a new employee at a hotel who's tasked with disposing of Jerry before an extravagant wedding. Hiring alley cat Tom to get rid of the clever rodent, a domino effect of events occurs, causing Tom, Jerry, and Kayla to join forces against her tyrannical manager Terrance (Pena). Now, Tom & Jerry has padded the cast list with two talents more than familiar with amusing antics.
Best known for NBC’s Community and The Hangover, Joeng solidified his prestige in stand-up comedy with his Netflix special, You Complete Me Ho, released earlier this year. Toting a memorable role as Peter in last year’s Deadpool 2, Delaney is also set to appear in the upcoming Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. According to THR, Joeng and Delaney are the latest to join the Tom & Jerry gang. Jeong will play a character named Jackie, and Delaney has been tapped to play DuBros. Further character details, along with Jost’s role, are still under wraps.
In addition to Joeng and Delaney, Jordan Bolger (The 100) and Pallavi Sharda (Pulse) have also joined the live-action hybrid as characters named Cameron and Preeta. Tom & Jerry is in the creative hands of executive producers Chris DeFaria and Adam Goodman, and screenwriters Katie Silberman, April Prosser, and Kevin Costello.
In an era of reboots and revivals, one focused on a beloved animated series is always a hit or miss prospect. Blending animation with live-action is a concept that has technologically progressed over the years, however, some adaptations have thrived, while others have fallen short of expectations. But given the famous duo’s longevity, familiarity, and star-studded cast, Tom & Jerry certainly stands a chance at finding success.
Tom & Jerry hits theaters on April 16, 2021.