Woody Woodpecker, the insane, animated avian menace originally voiced by Mel Blanc has his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Let that sink in for a moment. A cartoon character has the kind of recognition that your parents won’t ever give you.
And he’s about to have more. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the ancient icon is about to have new life in a new movie project from Illumination Entertainment (Despicable Me, The Lorax) and Universal. John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky, the writers behind Blades of Glory, are in negotiations to create the story.
Even though the character hasn’t been seen in film since a cameo in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, he’s been on television as late as 2002. Theoretically, there’s a cross-sectional audience for his wacky antics. But what kind of story can they build around him? My hope is that he has to team with Michael Jordan to play an interstellar game of basketball for the fate of humanity.
This, of course, comes weeks after the Universal head admitted they made shitty movies.
Just for fun, here’s my favorite of the old Woody Woodpecker cartoons, and yes, it’s solely for the fact that he opens a bottle off a dope’s giant buckteeth. What a maroon: