Fresh from its success with The Smurfs, which earned $559 million worldwide, Sony Pictures Animation has tapped Samurai Jack creator Genndy Tartakovsky to direct a new 3-D computer-animated Popeye cartoon feature. Sony wants Tartakovsky to embark on the Popeye project immediately after he finishes with Trannsylvania, an animated feature that Sony plans to launch in September.
Avi Arad (Spider-Man) will produce the Popeye feature, which will bring E.C. Segar’s spinach-chomping seaman with the bulbous forearms back to the big screen. Popeye, who was introduced in 1929 in Segar’s Thimble Theater, has had a long and distinguished career in animation, most notably in the series of cartoons produced by the Fleischer Studios.