Around here, every single writer (except everyone who isn’t Rob Hunter) has been clamoring for more details about The Lorax. “Who do you think will play him? What do you think the story will be like? Will the character design look like he’s fondling Boo Boo the Bear?”

All of these are valid questions, and some of them can be answered right this very minute. In fact, you’ve probably already answered the third one for yourself already after looking to the right.

More importantly, it’s been announced that Danny DeVito will put a shirt on, and hopefully drive straight from the set of It’s Always Sunny to go do the voice work for the main tree lobbyist.

In the USA Today piece featuring the news and the new image, Illumination Entertainment chief Chris Meladandri claimed that he felt DeVito had a presence much like Walter Matthau – grumbling and dodgy but still lovable. It’s obviously press release speak, but it’s press release speak that I actually find myself agreeing with completely. It’s an apt way to state DeVito’s talent, and I think the casting here is spot on.

The team also created Despicable Me and Horton Hears a Who! which gives a clue into how they’ll treat this particular story – most notably having to expand it a bit from the original short version. What does a beefed up Lorax look like? Probably like the tattoo on Rob Hunter’s ankle. However, it’s still unclear whether the plot will go beyond trees (since it’s now a myopic (and not all that dramatic) issue) or whether it will shy away from the current issue of human-caused global warming.

No matter what, it’s fortunate that the character design doesn’t look like Yogi Bear. Maybe that’s because bears are real and whatever species The Lorax is isn’t. It’s tough to say, but this is far less off-putting.

Still, this movie will even further confuse those of the political persuasion who don’t know whether to love him for his WWII propaganda or to hate him for his hammer-fisted environmental message.

What do you think?


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