Are you ready for some news that’s truly outrageous? Jem and the Holograms, everybody’s favorite show about a normal teenage girl with a double life as a pop sensation that didn’t star Miley Cyrus, is making its way to the big screen. The eighties cartoon slash Hasbro toy line slash catchiest fictional band around has been the subject of speculation for quite some time when it comes to picking nostalgic animated properties and turning them into live-action films. With cartoons like Alvin and the Chipmunks and The Flintstones already making the leap, and Johnny Quest and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles coming down the pipeline, it’s only inevitable that Jem would join their ranks sooner or later.
The film is being produced by noted budget-lover Jason Blum and his Blumhouse Productions, along with Scooter Braun, who besides sounding like a Captain America villain is also Justin Bieber’s manager. He knows modern music, kids! Directing the whole affair is Jon M. Chu, who has helmed many a film containing colons – G.I. Joe: Retaliation, Justin Bieber: Never Say Never and Step Up 2: The Streets. The threesome took to YouTube today to announce their partnership in bringing Jem and the Holograms to life, and out of the eighties for a modern teen audience.
It’s a request for help as well, but they’re not asking for money to fund the film; remember, Blum is the king of squeaking out films on micro-budgets. They’re taking the unique approach of asking Jem fans to help them with writing the music, designing the costumes, and even casting the girls. This is apparently a fan-controlled experience, and what that will produce is going to be fascinating. It’ll clearly be a labor of love and adoration, but will fan-written songs live up to the original Jem tunes?
Check out the trio’s petition below:
Jem and the Holograms ran from 1985–1988 and followed the exploits of Jerrica Benton, just your average corporate bigwig with a glamorous alter-ego. At night, she was Jem, the neon-decked frontwoman of the Holograms. The show followed their crazy adventures as they played their music and staying fiercely unique, one sparkly wig at a time.
Since the show was very much eighties-centric, writer Ryan Lendels has updated the plot for today’s new audience, and according to producers, the film is “for a whole new generation with themes of being true to who you are in a multitasking, hyperlinked social-media age.” Right, but they’re still in a band and there’s hopefully a keytar involved, yes?
Apparently the new plot centers on an orphaned teenager who becomes an online recording sensation. She and her sisters head out on a scavenger hunt – it’s music-themed – across Los Angeles in order to find a final message left by their late father. And now it’s up to you, Jem fans, to make this all happen. No pressure or anything. But just be sure there’s at least one glittery wig or two if you have any say in the costuming.