“The Stuff of Legend” seems tailor-made for a film adaptation. It’s a graphic novel (always a plus), and it’s got both the “talking toys” schtick of Toy Story and the “action movie team-up for kids” vibe last seen in Rise of the Guardians. The story goes like this: boogeyman pulls little boy into a dark and evil closet dimension. Toys venture in to save little boy. Upon entering the dark world, toys gain disproportionate amounts of bad-ass. The teddy bear is now a snarling grizzly, the jack-in-the-box is now a hatchet-wielding Joker-like figure, toy soldiers become real soldiers, and so forth.
But while The Stuff of Legend seems like obvious adaptation material, the same can’t be said for the two writers picked to do the adapting. Patrick Melton and Marcus Duston (in a story broken by The Hollywood Reporter) aren’t exactly known for their kiddie fare; the two are far more famous for Piranha 3D and Saws IV-3D. This could mean that The Stuff of Legend is headed down a decidedly darker path, but the film’s still being produced under the Disney name so the term “dark” will only stretch so far (translation: no stuffed animals in exploding buzzsaw deathtraps). Either the two screenwriters are venturing out of their comfort zone, or The Stuff of Legend will have a very minor tinge of Saw-inspired horror.
For those still frightened by jack-o-lanterns, the result’s the same either way.