You might have missed it in a week loaded with every cool new 2013 movie trailer at once, but the biggest big-screen news of the week involves a 2016 release -- Angry Birds: The Movie, to be financed independently of the studio system by Rovio, and produced by Despicable Me's John Cohen.
Ask not why they would do such a thing -- it is inevitable that any product with any name recognition will one day have its own film. Ask instead how they will sustain 90 minutes or so of screen time based on a game that simply involves throwing things at other things. Well, we have a few ideas, and offer them up for a couple of reasons: one, so that when the thing finally does come out, we can say we called it. Two -- a far less likely possibility -- we want to get all the obvious concepts out there first in hopes that they'll try to be more creative and do something different, ensuring we cannot say we called it. Either way, these strike us the likeliest scenarios:
7. The Jackass Method
Johnny Knoxville and Steve-O dunk themselves in tar and feathers, then actually climb into giant catapults and hurl themselves against various objects for the entire movie. It's more or less what they've done for three previous movies anyway, and we kept watching.
6. The Uwe Boll Method
Hey, somebody keeps letting this guy get his hands on video game licenses. Basically, same concept as above, only he'd somehow get Ray Liotta and Meat Loaf to star, and intersperse 20 minutes of actual Angry Birds game footage into the live-action scenes.
5. The Sofia Coppola Method
Make a movie about what the Birds do when they're not working. Basically, we see them hang out by the swimming pool, order room-service birdseed, stare at beautiful scenery and into mirrors, and listen to whatever CDs the director herself happens to be into at the time. It won't make any money, but it will make every critic's ten-best list.
4. The Adaptation/Seven Psychopaths Method
Co-scripted by Charlie Kaufman and Martin McDonagh, this would be a dark comedy about an alcoholic Irishman (Farrell) who gets hired by producer Jerry Bruckheimer (Christopher Walken) to write a big-budget Angry Birds movie for Nicolas Cage to star in. Cage, played by Cage doing a meta-impersonation of himself as played by Johnny Depp, proceeds to jeopardize the whole project when he gets uber-method and decides to start living in a twig nest up a tree. Can the drunken screenwriter stop the crazed thespian from building a giant slingshot by hand, and terrorizing the local pig farm?
3. The Garbage Pail Kids Method
Ha! Remember in the '80s when we wondered how they'd make a movie out of gross trading cards, and they did it anyway? Same formula: a lovelorn, bullied teenager (Justin Bieber) stumbles into an antique store, where the ancient owner (James Hong) keeps a secret hidden inside a mysterious Chinese casket. When the Angry Birds inside are accidentally unleashed, our hero must befriend them, hiding them from two inept animal control men (Ken Jeong and Mike Epps) while they help him deal with the evil jocks at his school.
2. Just Make Angry Birds Star Wars, Already
Granted, this would take some cooperation with Disney, but the opportunities for cross-promotional synergy are enormous, especially when Green Pig Vader reveals himself to be the disgruntled bastard son of Kermit and Miss Piggy.
1. The Obvious (i.e. Smurfs) Method
Unfortunately, this is probably how it will go. When a slacker (Seth Rogen) accidentally drops his iPad into a vat of chemicals, a chain reaction occurs that brings the Angry Birds to life. They follow him home, where he must conceal them from his girlfriend (Anna Faris) and his unlikely employers at a theme-park ride design company. The mayhem caused by the Birds eventually gets him fired, but then he's given one last chance, and they help him create a slingshot-coaster that saves the day. Also, there will be at least three scenes where the Birds lip-sync to whatever five-year-old rap hits the producers can get the rights to.
How would you make an Angry Birds movie, assuming you had to?