The Stooge is a proposed follow-up to Who Framed Roger Rabbit? that will team Mickey Mouse and Roger Rabbit together in a remake of the 1952 comedy of the same name starring Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis. It is set to take place throughout five specific locations in Disneyland park, and will also bring both Walt Disney and Orson Welles back to life via motion-capture.
Still in the early development phases, this pitch comes from original Roger Rabbit creator Gary K. Wolf, author of the novel upon which Who Framed Roger Rabbit? is based. And it's a pitch that's meant to look as though it were coming from Roger himself. Working alongside development producer Erik Von Wodtke, the pair have created a series of concept art posters, revealing that they are also planning three new Roger Rabbit animated shorts that will be created in conjunction with The Stooge.
That art can be seen here, along with a proposed one-sheet and a look at Walt Disney as he will once again live and breath in this potential comedy adventure. Check out Roger in Rear Window Rabbit, The Rabbit Who Knew Too Much and The Birds, then continue reading for more details.
These three shorts plan to utilize characters from Walt Disney's vast archives, spanning the entire history of the beloved company's earliest works. Gary K. Wolf talked about how these three short films were inspired by Alfred Hitchcock and some of the more iconic Disney characters.
"I do believe you don't have to be a Alfred Hitchcock buff or even have seen Rear Window to think the cartoon is funny. If you have seen Rear Window then you will understand the deeper humor in that cartoon. Alfred Hitchcock's been really big lately. There has been a Alfred Hitchcock film, a cable station movie about Tippi Hedren and The Birds and now a television series about the Bates Motel. Alfred Hitchcock is really big now!
Erik Von Wodtke and I were going over some of the birds. He pointed something out to me that I hadn't even thought about. Donald Duck is a bird! I don't think that one lampoons Alfred Hitchcock as much as it does Sylvester Stallone 's movie, The Expendables or The Dirty Dozen. Let's pull together a whole bunch of dissimilar characters and put them on a suicide mission!"
Gary K. Wolf went onto clarify that this is not a sequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, and that a true sequel could still get made, giving the world two very distinct Roger Rabbit movies in a short span of time.
"The two films are not mutually exclusive! You could see both-I don't really know at this point. There is a difference! The sequel movie (if it ever gets made) is going to be similar to the first movie. The Stooge is more of G-rated animated movie. There will be no question that this will be a family oriented movie."
The author even has high hopes for his cast, and plans to reach out to a number of actors.
"We would love to have Tom Hanks voicing Walt Disney. We would love to have Ryan Gosling as Jimmy Stewart! We would love to get Samuel L. Jackson as Louis Armstrong! The real coup would be Ben Affleck voicing Orson Welles who is Mickey's buddy in the movie! I am going to write them a letter to see if they are interested!"
This all sounds very exciting, but how likely are we to actually ever see The Stooge?
"The next step will be getting it to somebody at the studio to take a look at it so they can give us a yes or a no. They need to be interested in putting some development money into it and see how it works out. Realistically there is only one place that can make this movie. There is only place where Mickey Mouse and Roger Rabbit exist and that is Disney. If Disney isn't interested, then that is it! You can't go to Warner Brothers. The good part of it is that we have structured the whole proposal so that it is Disney-centric and there are a lot of spin-offs to this proposal that would make sense to Disney. The whole movie is going to be set in Disney theme park lands. They take a train from land to land with their traveling vaudeville show. You are not only merchandising Roger and Mickey, but you are merchandising the Disney lands! There are a lot of new characters, so there is merchandising too! There is a lot of product placement in movies today and luckily all the products placed in this movie are Disney characters! It should have a lot of appeal to Disney because it is commercial, but yet it is a lot of fun and not overtly commercial. We will not be putting a can of coke in Mickey's hand every time he appears on the screen!"
it may be a very long time before we see The Stooge on screen. A true sequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit? was planned immediately after the success of the first film, and would have placed Roger and his cartoon pals in World War II with the Toon Platoon. It was later rewritten to be a prequel that chronicled Roger's rise to fame. The sequel is still in development, and may eventually get made sometime in the future with Robert Zemeckis still expressing interest in the project.