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Mike Jones to Write Popeye

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood March 23, 2010 at 3:55AM

For screenwriter Mike Jones, maybe getting laid off from Variety a year ago was a good thing.
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Thompson on Hollywood

For screenwriter Mike Jones, maybe getting laid off from Variety a year ago was a good thing.

Thompson on Hollywood

Having divided his time as scriptwriter and journalist, Jones left Variety (where we worked closely together) and abandoned one career with a decidedly iffy future for another. Lo and behold, he is making a living as a screenwriter (script The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break is in the works at the Gotham Group) and Monday Variety announced that Jones will be writing the latest iteration of comics muscleman Popeye for Sony Pictures Animation and producer Avi Arad (Spider-Man). It will be an all-CGI animated feature, in 3-D.

"What fascinates me about Popeye is that he is both an unbounded superhero and a supreme underdog," Jones writes in an e-mail. "He is over eight decades old, has been served by several authors, and is a lasting merchandising phenom. Quite a feat for a 'squinty-eyed, runty sailor,' as Bluto would call him. It is a testament to a fantastic core character created by E.C. Segar and I'm humbled to be another steward."

This article is related to: Genres, Studios, Stuck In Love, In Production, Comics, Sony/Screen Gems/Sony Pictures Classics, Screenwriters


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.