Pea-NUTS

Offbeat director David Lynch picked to helm sequel to hit film

Good grief!
  • Good grief!

The Peanuts movie took in $45 million dollars in its opening weekend, a strong showing which naturally had producers talking sequel by Monday morning. But in a surprise turn, Blue Sky Studios has tapped David Lynch — director of such disturbing fare as Eraserhead, Blue Velvet, and The Straight Story — to handle the budding franchise's second installment. More surprising still: Lynch has announced his intention to blend live-action elements into the animated world of the original, and to portray Charlie Brown and the gang as adults instead of children.

"It started when I read about the sentencing of Peter Robbins in San Diego," explains Lynch. "Robbins was the voice of Charlie Brown in A Charlie Brown Christmas and a couple of other specials. Now I read that he tried to hire someone to kill a sheriff, that he threatened the manager of a mobile-home park, and that he stalked the doctor who performed breast-enhancement surgery on his girlfriend. As the judge is sending him to jail for four years, he's pleading for mercy, saying he's bipolar and schizophrenic. And it occurred to me: this man didn't play Charlie Brown. This man is Charlie Brown, the logical endpoint of being a depressed child who is constantly beset by failure, ostracized by his peers, and painfully aware of the world's cruelty and horror at just seven years of age."

"And then I read about his dog, who is terrified of cats, which has to be the dog equivalent of total emasculation. Of course the dog lives in a fantasy world of fighter planes and heroism: he is completely unable to function in reality. The more I looked, the more I realized that the entire Peanuts universe is a hotbed of neuroses and damage. I can't wait to get started."

Release is scheduled for Christmas of 2017.

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