DreamWorks Developing 'Madagascar' Penguins Spinoff Movie (Exclusive)
The penguins of DreamWorks Animation's Madagascar movie fame are graduating to their own feature film.
Alan J. Schoolcraft and Brent Simons, the writers behind DWA's Will Ferrell-voiced Megamind, have been tapped to tackle the project, which will feature the paramilitary parables of plucky penguins Skipper, Kowalski, Private and Rico.
The four paramilitary avians from Antarctica are secondary but scene-stealing characters in the Madagascar movies, the third of which is scheduled to hit theaters in 2012. In a sign of the foursome's fanning fashionability, when the first movie hit Blu-ray, "The Madagascar Penguins in a Christmas Caper," an animated short featuring the penguins,was one of the extras.
The characters were also spun off in a CGI-animated TV show titled The Penguins of Madagascar that aired on Nickelodeon; it finished 2010 as the second most-watched animated show behind SpongeBob SquarePants amongst ages 2-11. The show is now in its second season.
No release date has been set for the feature, which at this stage has no director (or, in the case of many animated films, co-directors). Schoolcraft and Simons will develop the story and write the script.
Megamind, which was Schoolcraft and Simon's first produced script, grossed over $319 million worldwide. It began life as a spec titled Mastermind intended to be a live-action film but was later reconfigured when DWA bought it as the company's first spec script.
Schoolcraft and Simons are repped by ICM and Brian Lutz Management.