– [Strider] Howdy! This is PhantomStrider. Throughout the years, there have been animated movies that… almost happened. But for some reason, these movies might suddenly get scrapped or pulled before they’re ever shown to the public. Even Dreamworks and Disney have canceled their fair share. For some, you just wonder why such a great idea would be trashed. For others… we can be very glad they never made it to movie theaters. So let’s check out the Top 10 Cancelled Animated Movies. Also, pardon the lack of footage on some of these. I’ve gotten as much footage as I can, but not a lot of footage is always available for me. so there might be a bit more live-action than usual. Anyway, onto the countdown. Number 10… “Legend of Spyro 3D”. Hey, I still remember the original Spyro games. Good memories. “Legend of Spyro” was intended to be the first movie based on the “Spyro the Dragon” games. The story honestly sounded super-cliché, though. Get this: (dramatic voice)
Spyro learns of a great dragon prophecy! This prophecy speaks of a… rare PURPLE dragon, born once only every ten generations! But THEN comes the evil… (normal voice)
“Darkmaster”… Darkmaster? Really? That’s like the most generic evil antagonist name I’ve ever heard! Let’s just call him “Malefore” instead. Anyway, the evil Malefore attacks the temple where Spyro’s egg is! But in a sort of Superman-Krypton-style screw-up, the egg guardian Ignitus manages to escape with Spyro’s egg, before… fumbling the egg downriver into a swamp. So Spyro’s adopted into a family of dragonflies! Where he learns… (gasps) He’s not a dragonfly! Really, shocker. No… Spyro is a powerful, mysterious, steely-eyed stranger from another land. So Spyro/Superman/Hercules leaves in search of his true home, fights evil Malefore, Yadda, yadda, yadda, ya. I’m kinda happy this one didn’t make it because to me, it sounded like the most overdone Superman storyboard in the last half-century. The original movie was planned to be released in 2009, but then got delayed ’til 2010. And at the last minute, the movie was completely cancelled. Apparently, Activision made the decision to take the franchise in a different direction. We later found out that direction was “Skylanders Academy”. which is a definite improvement on what I’ve read of… this movie. I mean, how seriously are we expected to take “a purple dragon”? It’s a purple dragon! (panting and footsteps) And for number 9… “Dumbo II”. Weirdly enough, out of all the Disney movies you could’ve chosen, they were actually planning a sequel to this! I mean, the movie was basically story about a badly-treated elephant who gets absolutely slam drunk, then figures out from some offensive charicatures that he can fly due to his mutations. “Dumbo II” was originally planned to be released in 2001, but it got delayed again and again until finally they just cancelled it. The story actually took place only one day after the original film, but this time, our now-flying friend Dumbo teams up with a few other animals, each animal representing a different stage of childhood. But this time, Dumbo gets lost in New York City, and honestly… a flying elephant in New York actually sounds like a pretty interesting novelty to me. Even in the very short time we saw Dumbo in “Who Framed Roger Rabbit”, I was pretty intrigued. Plus, as a foreign Australian, I’d actually be pretty curious to see the hectic life of New York City from the perspective of a small-ish animal like Dumbo. Dumbo’s new friends included Penny the Ostrich, who is jealous of Dumbo ‘cuz he could fly and she couldn’t. And Godfry the Hippo, who was in older stages of childhood and insisted on doing everything himself. Honestly, I actually enjoy the idea of this movie more than the original, and I think I would’ve been interested to see it. (music) Number eight… “Me And My Shadow”. When Dreamworks had a dramatic staff overhaul, “Me And My Shadow” was continually delayed for years on end, until finally, it ended up in this weird state of limbo; Not quite cancelled, but certainly not complete. But seeing as this movie was announced nearly a decade ago, we can probably call it cancelled. Even the synopsis of this mysterious shadow movie is weird. It says it’s about the word’s most dull, boring character. Their words, not mine! He’s called Stanley and he has an energetic shadow named Stan. Together, they discover a mass rebellion by an evil shadow. Apparently, this evil shadow plans to lead all the other shadows and taking control of their humans. Which actually sounds kinda cool. In fact, this movie had a lot of great ideas before it was shut down. The animation designs look slick and stylized, particularly the shadows. In fact, half the film was planned to be animated in 2D. I’m guessing this was a shadow portion since, you know, shadows basically ARE 2D. Sadly, both the 2015 director Edgar Wright and Dreamworks seem to have moved on to other projects. And even though I think this would’ve been such a cool concept for an animated movie, I do understand why. I mean, sometimes, both inside and outside the animation world. you just have to cut your losses and move on. (music) Number seven… “Big Bug Man”. Marlon Brando’s last known film work. You might remember him from “The Godfather”. A legendary actor. Originally, “Big Bug Man” was intended to be released in 2007, around 2008, but it was mysteriously pulled from distribution despite Marlon Brando’s unfortunate health failing at the time, he was still so dedicated to his role as Mrs. Lemon [Mrs. Sour]. – He would read some lines, go back on oxygen, and he was obviously struggling just to breathe. – It was actually a role he chose because he always wanted to play a woman at least once in his acting career. – [Bob] How exciting that we’ve– His last dreams, he accomplished, and we were helping him accomplishing that last dream playing Mrs. Sour. – [Strider] He even went as far as to dress up as the character in the recording booth, complete with wig, dress, and so on just to get into character. Unfortunately, no footage is available, but that would be awesome to see. And despite his health failing at the time, he’s said to have had the most fun in work since his 1953 film, “Julius Caesar”, and that really seems like a beautiful sentiment. I mean, think of all the big-name films Brando headlined in during his amazing career. It’s nice to know that Brando’s last experience in film was a lot of fun for him. This is one case where I really don’t care if the movie was good or not. I would’ve loved to see it anyway just so we can see Marlon Brando’s final great performance. And the sixth cancelled animated movie is… “Treasure Planet 2”. “Treasure Planet”, in my opinion, is one of the most underrated Disney movies of all. It’s a fun combination of both intergalactic space travel and, well, pirates. Space pirates, if you will. I don’t care if it makes sense or not. It’s two unorthodox but awesome concepts to meld together. Disney’s plans with this movie were much like their plans with “Aladdin 2: The Return of Jafar”. The sequel was said to be the TV show’s pilot. Honestly, of all the Disney movies that could’ve worked as a television show, I think this is one of them. I mean, space pirates, what’s not to like in a TV show? I mean, I’d happily jump up every Saturday morning for “Disney’s Space Pirates”, and it sounds like the film got pretty far before being cancelled, too. Apparently some of the producers were in the recording studio waiting to start work on the film when they heard of its cancellation. They received a call saying, “The original movie has bombed, so the sequel is canned.” I mean, it did gross over $100 million, but the cost to make it far excelled that, and this potentially really fun space series was up in flames. And for number five… “The Shadow King”. some of these cancelled animated movies may look average, but not many of them can claim to have a $50 million budget backing them before they were cancelled. I mean, that’s one hell of an animation botch-up money sink. I think there’s one big reason this film had so much cash sunk into it. This is actually a Henry Selick film. You know, the guy who made “Nightmare Before Christmas” and “Coraline”. And like most of Selick’s films, the premise sounded pretty unique. It’s about a nine-year-old orphan with large hands who becomes a secret military weapon against an army of shadows, which actually sounds like a really cool claymation version of “Kingdom Hearts”, without the… groanworthy, completely unnecessarily-complicated story. But unfortunately, due to concerns over the film’s finances, Disney dropped the project completely. But the last report on this film actually sounded very positive. Sources say that Mr. Selick is still working on “The Shadow King”, along with two other projects. But sadly, that report was made in 2016, and nothing has been said since then. But who knows? If it ever comes out in theaters, I’ll definitely be lining up to see “Henry Selick’s The Shadow King”! And I know a whole lot of other people will be, too. On a side note, what’s with all these cancelled shadow movies? Maybe all movies based on shadows are cursed or something, because whenever anyone tries to make a shadow movie, the movie itself disappears… into a shadow. And for number four… “Newt”. Something awesome happened because of this movie’s cancellation. But first, I should tell you what this movie was actually going to be. The story was about a male newt named, well… Newt, and a female newt named Brook. And they hate each other, but are forced to work together when ending up on a perilous adventure. So, it was a buddy film about… newts! I guess that could be interesting? Despite this film sounding like it never passed the first draft, there was actually a lot of work put into it. There was clearly a lot of detail put into the world, and it looked like a visually gorgeous film. But “Newt” just had problems from the get-go. They just kept rewriting the script again and again and it kept being pushed back from 2008 to 2009 and so on. Eventually, the film was given to Pete Docter, the director of “Up”. But instead, he pitched Disney another idea, which actually became my favorite Disney movie of all time: “Inside Out”. So thank you, Newt. You inadvertently brought to life one of my favorite animated movies of all time. But as a result, Newt is now shelved for good. making it Pixar’s only cancelled animated film ever. And the third cancelled animated movie is… “Popeye”. As of this point, Popeye is a truly ancient animated character. Popeye has been around nearly 100 years. But he’s only had a handful of projects since the 1940s. But his trademark laugh, love of spinach, and his speech impediment still feel so fresh in my mind. Yet I can’t even remember the last time I saw one of his cartoons. I guess he was just that memorable. But when it comes to movies, it just seems like Popeye gets rotten luck. While the 1980 film “Popeye” is certainly memorable, it was mainly memorable for being the first debut of Robin Williams, and was honestly a pretty mixed bag. So while Sony originally intended to make “Popeye”… It was instead scrapped for… “The Emoji Movie”. I kid you not. The ancient but memorable Popeye was shelved for “The Emoji Movie”. To get a better idea of the movie, I watched the sneak peek. While the movie didn’t look like it was gonna be anything groundbreaking, it at least looked true to the source material. The animation has a Popeye feel to it, and the voice acting didn’t sound too bad. (Olive grunts) – Don’t worry, Miss Oyl! I’ll save– (punching and crashing)
– Save ME? – I mean, there’s not much else to go off, but I think we can safely say “The Emoji Movie” was a step back. Though I suspect a stink bomb in the cinema would have been more entertainment than… whatever the hell “The Emoji Movie” was. And the second cancelled animated movie is… “Wild Life”. Just so you know, I don’t mean the 2016 movie “The Wild Life”. Just “Wild Life”. Ironically enough, the movie was cancelled by Disney for being too wild. Originally, “Wild Life” was intended to be a satire of the crazy 70s American culture, as well as paying homage to some of the fashion icons who played a hand in that culture. It was about an elephant named Ella being discovered and being offered a job as a star attraction by a down-on-his-luck club owner named Red Pittstain and his star attraction Kitty Glitter. What went wrong with this one? Well, the movie was being developed by Disney, and as you can imagine, 70s American culture wasn’t exactly always family-friendly, and the vice chairman Roy Disney was absolutely appalled by the movie’s mature content, and outright canned it. Honestly, I’m not quite sure what the target demographic was with this movie, but considering the subject matter, I don’t know if it coulda’ gotten away with a PG. I mean, come on! We’ve got an elephant in a pole dancer’s costume here. I mean, those aren’t fishnet stockings, those are fishnet everything. Nothing against her, I just don’t know if that’s suitable for kids. You know, on Disney. And my #1 favorite cancelled animated movie is… “Larrikins”. This is probably my favorite cancelled animated movie. The animation looked absolutely beautiful, and I like the characters and concept. It was even set in my home country, Australia. Essentially, Dreamworks intended to make a movie about bilbies. It’s like an Australian opossum-bandicoot? I dunno, we got weird stuff here. But the premise actually sounded really promising. It was about a bilby named Perry and a kangaroo named Red setting out on a musical adventure across Australia. – ♪ I should just sit by? ♪ watch this illegal alien ♪ squat on in? – [Crowd] No!
– ♪ I don’t think so! ♪ That’d be quite un-Australian – That sounds kinda neat. The kangaroo Red was apparently gonna be a bit of an Australian stereotype. He’s hard-edged, unemotional, thinks everything is a joke, and hates authority. Which I’d never really thought about before, but, I guess that is a stereotype of Aussies. Something I liked about Perry is he’s one of the first proper Obsessive-Compulsive animated characters I’ve ever seen. He will compulsively stack berries all the time and is fearful of breaking his routines and habits. I can definitely relate. Tim Minchin, the creator in charge of the film, actually announced its cancellation less than a year before it was gonna come out. He even left a detailed blog on all the work he put into it and how much it cost. It really showed what a shame it was this film could never see the light of day. “Larrikins” was a cancelled animated movie that really looked like it was gonna be something special. Fortunately, Dreamworks did turn it into a nice little animated short named “Bilby”, which is basically about Perry as he tries to protect a bird named Kylie from the dangers of the outback. Of which we know there are many. And overall, I think “Larrikins” was the cancelled animated movie that I was looking forward to most of all. Well, thanks for checking out these cancelled animated movies with me. It is a shame, though, that sometimes, years of creativity can end up being not shown to the world at all. But you know, we’ve seen ’em now. And good or bad, I appreciate the effort of so many people trying to make these animations come to life. And if you’ve got your own thoughts on these cancelled animated movies, or if you know of one I missed, feel free to leave them in the comments below. And as always, thanks for watching, and I’ll see you next time.