In a world full of reboots, it’s actually been a while since we’ve had a new movie in the Pink Panther franchise. MGM Studios has been looking at their options for doing something new, and they believe they’ve found it in the ideas of director Jeff Fowler and screenwriter Chris Bremner, this time with double the pink cat.
The studio has said they haven’t released anything in the Pink Panther franchise for a while because of rights issues. With those now sorted, and a new story idea in hand, they’re taking the franchise in a new direction.
Typically, we see Pink Panther in one of two ways. This may be a story starring French police detective Inspector Clouseau. This character solved a case involving a jewel known as the “Pink Panther” in his first feature film. We also know the character as a cartoon. This came about after audiences loved their first sight of the cartoon character, meant to only be a fun touch to the credits for the movie. The cartoon character got his own series and became a popular entity. In all the many series and films, the cartoon character and Inspector have never come together.
While they aren’t releasing many plot details, a source told The Hollywood Reporter that the upcoming movie will feature the Inspector. The Inspector has undergone a traumatic event. The animated Pink Panther will serve as the inspector’s imaginary friend. There won’t be any dialogue for the Pink Panther character, though he will help solve the case.
“Popular the world over, the legacy of the iconic Pink Panther has endured for more than 50 years and continues to be discovered by new generations,” said Michael De Luca, MGM Film Group chairman, and Pamela Abdy, MGM Film Group president. “We are so happy to come together with Jeff, Chris, Larry, Julie, Dan, Jonathan, Walter and Ryan to bring one of MGM’s most well-loved franchise back to the big screen and in a way audiences have never seen before.”
The director and screenwriter behind the project are responsible for some major recent releases. Debut director Jeff Fowler hit it big with the recent Sonic the Hedgehog movie, which grossed over $306 million worldwide. Fowler is also working on a Sonic sequel. Chris Bremner is most known for his recent work co-writing Bad Boys for Life. The movie is one of the top-grossing projects of 2020. He has now been tapped for a buddy comedy called End of the World, a M.A.S.K movie, and National Treasure 3.
The Pink Panther franchise came about in 1963. In the 30 years following, ten films were released. Many of them starred Peter Sellers as Inspector Jacques Clouseau. In 2006, we had our first new film starring Steve Martin. We’ve also seen the character in animated series and shorts.
While MGM has delayed the release of many movies in 2020, it looks like they are still moving ahead with new work in their classic franchises. We haven’t had a new Pink Panther release in over a decade, but the character still remains known and popular. We’ll be watching to see how these two move forward with merging the two character personas.