They’re still making that live-action-animation-hybrid Tom and Jerry movie, and the film’s villain has been found. Michael Peña, aka “the best thing about the Ant-Man movies”, has joined the Tom and Jerry movie cast in the role of hotel manager who has it in for the famous cartoon cat and mouse duo. Traditionally, Tom and Jerry are each other’s greatest foe, but I guess they’ll put their differences aside to battle Michael Peña.
Deadline broke the news that Michael Peña has joined the Tom and Jerry movie cast. In Tom and Jerry, Chloe Grace Moretz plays Kayla, “a new hire at an elegant Park Hotel where Jerry is staying. Worried for her job, she hires a broke alley cat, Tom, to get rid of the mouse.” Peña will play “Terrance, is the deputy general manager of the hotel. A bit of bully, he hires Kayla as a temporary hire only to end up pitted against her and Tom/ Jerry once she starts impressing upper management.” There you have it, folks: the Tom and Jerry movie in a nutshell. You don’t even need to see the movie now!
Tim Story, director of Barbershop and more, is directing Tom and Jerry, which will blend live-action actors with CGI. This raises a question: will Tom and Jerry look like their original animated selves, or will they be rendered “realistically”, so they look like a real-life cat and mouse? My guess is the latter is going to happen, and it’ll probably be weird. It might even lead to some kind of backlash a la the Sonic the Hedgehog movie, and then the film will have to quickly retool the characters at great expense. Or maybe I’m putting too much thought into this. Maybe people aren’t so zealous about the appearance of Tom and Jerry.
The cartoon characters have been around since the 1940s, and already made a leap to feature films with 1992’s fully-animated Tom and Jerry: The Movie, which made the controversial decision to have Tom and Jerry speak – something never done before or since. Will this new movie let the cat and mouse have lines? And if so, who is voicing them? We’ll find out.
Peña is a talented guy, and I have no doubt he’ll bring his A-game to the role of Terrance. I’m just having a hard time mustering up any enthusiasm for this project. But hey, it’s clearly being aimed at a younger audience, and that’s fine.
Tom and Jerry opens April 16, 2021.
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