It Should Be a Movie By Now: Thundercats


by Lucas Tetrault

I’d wager I’m not the only kid who grew up in the 80’s/90’s who has been waiting for what seems like eternity for a live action Thundercats movie. Saturday morning was never complete without watching Lion-O and my favorite humanoid feline heroes take on Mumm-Ra  and his horde of mutant subjects. With my action figures in hand I’d yell right along with Lion-O at the top of my lungs … Thunder, Thunder, Thunder … Thundercats – HOOOOOOOOOO!

Still gives me shivers of excitement

Something about the 80’s era of cartoons was epic in every sense of the word. Awesome intro songs, awesome animation, awesome toys … everything was just AWESOME. We had TMNT, He-Man, Transformers, and G.I. Joe all of which have had live action movies. Is there a reason that a Thundercats film has not been given the green light?

In 2009 there was quite a bit of buzz created at Comic-Con when images of concept art for a Thundercats movie surfaced.  From what I can remember there was a script already in play that had a video game art director in line to direct it. (yeah, I just looked it up – Jerry O’Flaherty art director of games such as Unreal Championship and Gears of War) If you do a simple Google search you will find said concept art along with what looks to be a CGI test video on YouTube of Lion-O battling Slithe. After watching the speculative two minute clip, I’d dare say that we’re fortunate this never got any further than it did.

There, I did your Google searching work for you

So why the live action film snuff? Surely production studios see the merit with a movie like this right? I mean look how awful Transformers 2 and G.I. Joe Retaliation were. Plenty of fan boys, like myself, still packed the cinemas and helped make sure that films that otherwise had no business making money, did. Maybe the failure of the reboot series in 2011 through Cartoon Network tainted the studio execs from wanting to tread into the realm of Third Earth.

Regardless, I know that the fans out there want to see this movie happen. There are plenty of threads and forums where you can find casting lists put together by devoted admirers of the show.  Some of them are actually pretty well thought out. If I were to pick just a few, say the hero and villain, it’d be a tough choice.  Maybe I would go with Zachary Quinto for Lion-O and Ralph Fiennes as Mumm-Ra. Zachary has an un-tapped talent that would couple well with managing a character that is depicted as a child trapped within a warrior/leader role. As far as Mr. Fiennes is concerned, he pulled off He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named so well that I’m convinced he could pull off this role without breaking a sweat.


I moonlight as a Casting Director

Seriously, when I look at some of the films that are being produced and the garbage that Hollywood keeps pouring out, why is it that Thundercats isn’t already in my blu-ray collection? If a movie like this were made, you would have a huge fan base of individuals chomping at the bit to see it. The toy manufacturers would all be smiling for the money that they would bank. With CGI and special effects teams putting together films such as Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers with the greatest of ease it’s not hard to imagine that a bunch of alien looking cats could grace the silver screen. I mean, if Jem can be made into a major motion picture…(no I’m not kidding)…for crying out loud, someone PLEASE make a Thundercats movie.

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  1. @Brendan I did indeed. I was disappointed that they didn’t take it at least one season further. I read that they had some great stuff planned. Especially with Pumyra and her betrayal. 🙂

    1. I was hoping for that third season too 🙁 The first season’s ending was as hardcore as the season opener for Adventure Time(In the same way 😉 ) Fun fact, Puumyra is the voice of Bobby Hill from King of the Hill!

  2. You want to be really careful about what you ask for from Hollywood. It’s a deal with the devil. Sure, it COULD be good, but I’d put the likelihood of that actually happening at maybe 10%. The other 90% is a cringeworthy toy commercial directed by Michael Bay or someone similar.

  3. So very true @nickverboon:disqus … but one can hold out hope. I loved the first Transformer movie despite it being the Michael Bay atrocity that some called it. Mainly because it was an excellent opportunity to see what I always wanted as a kid – for the Transformers to come ALIVE. Regardless of the merits of the movie itself, it was still fun and 6 to 15 year old Lucas would’ve reveled in seeing that. Much like he would a Thundercats film. 😉

  4. Thundercats would make an interesting movie as long as they spent enough money on special effects and actors…doubt they would though…good post!

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