Another big update on heavily in-demand director Guillermo del Toro has landed on THR. According to the report, del Toro is setting up an animated feature titled Trollhunters at DreamWorks Animation, which he will write and direct. Trollhunters will be based on a young-adult book del Toro submitted to publisher Hyperion two weeks ago.
After weekly visits to DreamWorks’ campus in Glendale, California, this summer, the filmmaker also has decided to make DreamWorks his animation home, where he will serve as a consultant and executive producer on several projects already in development, including Kung Fu Panda 2 and Puss in Boots.
In an exclusive THR interview, del Toro said animation has caught his eye because he believes that during the next 10 years, the entertainment landscape will shift into a transmedia world – a confluence of movies, TV, books, video and online – and artists will need to be educated in all aspects of media. That echoes the words the filmmaker said during San Diego Comic-Con last summer, during the panel for Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, the horror film he produced, that Troy Nixey is directing.
Apparently del Toro also feels the same way I do – that animation can attract moviegoers of all ages, including older audiences:
“I wanted very much to develop a story that could be written for kids but dealt with a genre that was scary,” he said. “It essentially combines fairy tales with modern times and is about how difficult it is to be kid. Normally, kids are idealized in animated films. But the growing pains, married with the notion that there is a world right next to us that is completely plagued by creatures of ancient lore, it’s thematically fitting with the rest of my stuff.”
The script for Trollhunters will be written and rewritten over a period of time, and del Toro plans on finishing it before he shoots At the Mountains of Madness.
Speaking of At the Mountains of Madness, a dream project Guillermo del Toro has been mounting for years, he is starting his fourth week of design work with Lightstorm Entertainment, and will have a summit with Universal Pictures in three weeks at which he and his team will present a budget, art and maquettes to the studio’s executives, and “cross your fingers, we hope to get a greenlight.” What I wouldn’t do to be a fly on that wall.
According to the report, del Toro is also in development on the Haunted Mansion film project for Disney and plans to produce another Universal project titled Midnight Delivery.
“People say, ‘How does he do it?’ Well, I don’t work on them at the same time,” del Toro said. ” ‘Midnight Delivery,’ I wrote 11 years ago. The fact that they are happening now is flattering and great, but it doesn’t mean I’m writing seven screenplays at one time.”