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Disney Hires 'Horrible Bosses' Writer For Long-Gestating Animation 'King of the Elves'

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist July 1, 2011 at 7:00AM

Philip K. Dick adaptations have come in many forms over the years, starting with the stone-cold classic "Blade Runner." There have been blockbusters loosely based on his work ("Minority Report," "Total Recall"), horrors ("Screamers"), dramatic romances (this year's "The Adjustment Bureau") and once, something properly faithful to the spirit of the sci-fi writer's work, Richard Linklater's "A Scanner Darkly." But the one thing we never expected? A Disney animation.
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Philip K. Dick adaptations have come in many forms over the years, starting with the stone-cold classic "Blade Runner." There have been blockbusters loosely based on his work ("Minority Report," "Total Recall"), horrors ("Screamers"), dramatic romances (this year's "The Adjustment Bureau") and once, something properly faithful to the spirit of the sci-fi writer's work, Richard Linklater's "A Scanner Darkly." But the one thing we never expected? A Disney animation.

And yet Dick's short story "King of the Elves," one of the least typical works in his oeuvre, has been in development at Disney for at least half a decade, atlhough the film's had a troubled development: originally set for a release next year, the film was scrapped and returned to development, and rumored to be dead altogether. But reports circulated that Chris Williams, director of "Bolt," had been hired to revive the film, and that turns out to be correct: Variety confirm Williams' involvement, as well as bringing news that Michael Makowitz, a TV veteran who wrote the story for, and produced, next week's comedy "Horrible Bosses," will write the screenplay.

The plot involves a man in the Mississippi Delta who saves a group of elves (along with one dwarf), and is chosen to be their new king -- which sounds like tailor-made Disney fare, to be honest. Obviously, a 2012 release is now out of the question, with "Wreck-It Ralph" filling that hole, and Variety say that a 2013 release is being eyed, but we're skeptical: the studio are already meant to be releasing two Pixar films, "Monsters University" on June 21st and the secret, original project on November 27th, and with the screenplay only just getting underway, we'd expect this in 2014 at the earliest.

In other resuscitated project news, /Film have news from producer DeVon Franklin that his new take on "Masters of the Universe" is still alive, saying that he "should have that script very soon. I'm praying that we can start figuring out how we're going to make it." Our suggestion? Don't.

This article is related to: Films, Film Studios, Animated Films, King Of The Elves


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