Movies based on popular toy lines really are not that far-fetched. Remember those awful Bionicle films from the early 2000s? Or the Lego movies and their spin-offs? Well, now another popular toy is reportedly inspiring a movie franchise, and no, it’s not Potato Head. According to gossip writer Daniel Richtman, a Play-Doh movie is apparently in active development.
This has not been confirmed by the trades or the studios so please take this with a grain of salt. It is just a rumor at this point and should absolutely be taken as such. Richtman’s scoops have proven accurate in the past, so it is not completely out of the realm of possibility. He usually reports things fairly close to when they are formally announced, so if a reveal is coming, it will likely be soon.
Also, whispers of a Play-Doh movie actually date back to April 2015, when 20th Century Fox revealed that it had struck a deal with Hasbro Studios to produce a Play Doh movie franchise based on the beloved toy. Not much has been said about the film since then, so many assumed the project had quietly died. If this new rumor is true, then obviously it would confirm that this is not the case. Among the talent initially attached to the project was Paul Feig, a pretty big score for a film centered around molding putty.
To understand why Hollywood is so strangely interested in making this a thing, Play-Doh came into existence back in the 1930s, when it was initially used as a wallpaper cleaner in Cincinnati, Ohio. Two decades later, it was repurposed for use at schools in the Cincinnati area. Originally manufactured by Kutol Products Company, Play-Doh was then made, sold, and marketed by the Rainbow Crafts Company before becoming a Kenner product and, eventually, a Hasbro toy, which it remains to this day.
If this rumor does end up being true and Play-Doh is going the way of Lego, then it will be fascinating to see how the creative team comes up with a concept worth our time and money. Honestly, I do not look at the toy and see a compelling Play Doh movie plot, but hey, that’s why I’m not being paid the big bucks to write stories for a massive audience.
According to Tim Walsh’s Timeless Toys: Classic Toys and the Playmakers Who Created Them, Play-Doh sold more than 2 billion cans between 1955 and 2005. In 2005, 75 countries were selling the product at a breathtaking rate of 95 million cans a year. More than 6,000 stores in the United States sell the product. From a moneymaking standpoint, I can totally see these numbers initially being very attractive to Hollywood big wigs wanting to make a Play Doh movie. But if they were to think about this from a storytelling perspective-crazy idea, I know-then they might realize this is not fertile ground in which to plant ideas. But I guess we will see what they decide to do with it.
Hey, weirder things than a Play-Doh movie have happened. Recently, too. Remember that abysmal Emoji movie from a few years back? Yeah, that was pretty bizarre.