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Warner Bros, Leonardo DiCaprio to produce Bill Watterson biopic film?

TrackingBoard.com is reporting that Warner Bros has picked up a biopic script by Dan Dollar about Bill Watterson. The script is called A Boy and His Tiger and chronicles the early Watterson struggles to become a cartoonist, dealing with the popularity and then his fight with the syndicate. The film will be produced by Leonardo DiCaprio, Roy Lee and Rock Shaink.

Bill is a hot topic even 20+ years after we walked away from his strip. The documentary Dear Mr. Watterson was released just before Thanksgiving and he’s granted a few new interviews like the latest one from Mental Floss which went viral on social media.

It probably should be noted that studios option projects all of the time. They grab them before a competing studio gets them even if they don’t have immediate plans to take the project into production. At this early stage, it’s hard to tell what Warner Bros intentions are.

You can read the synopsis of the script here

Community Comments

#1 John Weber
December/3/2013
@ 10:12 am

No. No, nononono. NO. Absolutely not. Since Bill Watterson is such a notorious recluse, since so little is known about him, and since he VALUES HIS PRIVACY, this is a project that I hope never takes off the ground. To do so would grossly go against so much of his values. No.

#2 Rich West
December/3/2013
@ 10:32 am

Watterson has read the script and told Di Caprio that he is opposed to the project in its entirety. I do not think it will be made.

#3 Danny Burleson
December/3/2013
@ 12:58 pm

I’d be curious to see something like this, but biopics about someone who’s still alive always seems creepy to me (not that I’d want Bill to die anytime soon so a dumb movie can exist). And with someone so notoriously private, you know most of it would be made up anyway. It just sounds like an excuse to make a backdoor Calvin and Hobbes movie.

So long as it was treated with care, I’d rather see a biopic about someone like George Herriman, Walt Kelly, or Charles Schulz (of course, even at 13+ years ago, it feels like he’s passed too recently for the biopic treatment).

#4 Jeff Pert
December/3/2013
@ 1:13 pm

Because when I think “Calvin & Hobbes”, I think “Leonardo DiCaprio”.

#5 Brian Fies
December/3/2013
@ 5:10 pm

Never gonna happen. As Alan said, stuff gets optioned all the time. A microscopically small percentage of it gets made. Add to that the pulse-pounding action of watching your lead sit at a drawing board 100 hours a week…. No action, minimal conflict or drama (“Hey, we just got picked up by the Duluth Bugle!”), no great hardship overcome or triumph of the spirit; there’s no movie there.

#6 Stacy Curtis
December/4/2013
@ 2:05 am

Don’t give the film any rights to use any Calvin & Hobbes artwork and see how they like to make a movie without that.

#7 b.j. dewey
December/4/2013
@ 6:16 am

Agree with D.B. on a biopic about Herrimen, Kelly, Schulz and agree with John Weber about one on Watterson – NO.

#8 Terry LaBan
December/4/2013
@ 9:20 am

I can’t imagine a biopic about someone who spends most of his time alone in his house would be very interesting. They’d probably have to jazz it up with a subplot about Hobbes doubling as a hiding place for smuggled illegal drugs and maybe some car chases as well. BTW, I believe Calvin and Hobbes ended in 1996, which would make it only 18 years since Watterson walked away.

#9 Anne Morse Hambrock
December/4/2013
@ 11:07 am

I don’t understand the “biopic” approach for someone like Watterson. An “American Masters” piece on PBS, yes. But a treatment similar to the ones on Johnny Cash and Ray Charles, no.

Celebrities such as Cash and Charles live their lives out loud and in full public view so their personalities are fair game, I think.

For a cartoonist such as Watterson it should never be about more than the work and possible life influences that shape that work. Again, I think someday an American Masters piece or inclusion in an overall Ken Burns documentary are fully warranted. Otherwise leave the man in peace.

#10 Andrew Farago
December/4/2013
@ 1:36 pm

Production is underway. This scene shows Watterson looking out of his studio window, contemplating his career as he battles with the syndicate over licensing issues:

http://dinosaurusrex.ca/wp-content/gallery/movember-2013-week-1-the-new-look/leonardo-dicaprio-with-a-mustache-aviator.jpg

#11 Bill Bettwy
December/4/2013
@ 2:53 pm

ANDREW! You totally got me! I thought that was a serious link. That was hilarious!!!!! I swear I just did a Jack Tripper water spit all over my macbook!

#12 Stacy Curtis
December/4/2013
@ 11:14 pm

They’ve got the wrong actor. Mark Tatulli for the win.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/comic-riffs/tatterson.jpg

#13 Milt Priggee
December/6/2013
@ 12:36 pm

IF?.and I do mean?.. IF?. it does get made, I’d prefer to see something that is not all that familiar to the general public. (So, I guess I’d prefer PBS to bioPic) Like his time at the Cincinnati Post?..and why it ended(?). What were his influences to do C&H?.? His cartooning at the Chagrin Falls paper, freelance and Target covers and layout work while he worked at preparing C&H.
Just curious?..
When it comes to licensing, obviously he just cared more about his strip than he did the money?and he proved that with his professional and personal decisions during and after the strip’s run.
Kudos to him AND his syndicate.

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