It's looking like the rumors of Rick Moranis stepping out of retirement to return for the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids reboot Shrunk were true, as the veteran actor has reportedly closed his deal to appear in the movie. Previously, it had been reported that Moranis was in talks to potentially reprise his franchise role of absent-minded inventor Wayne Szalinski, though Moranis had yet to officially sign on to the project. Exactly how big of a part the character will play in the story remains unclear, so it's possible the appearance will be limited to a brief cameo, but hopefully he'll be featured in a bigger supporting role.
Filmmaker Joe Johnston, who helmed the original Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, returns to direct Shrunk as well, using a screenplay by Todd Rosenberg. Leading the cast this time will be Josh Gad (Frozen) playing the adult version of Wayne's son Nick Szalinski, who was played by child actor Robert Oliveri in the 1989 movie. An inventor himself, Nick's dreams of following in his father's footsteps go a little too far when he ends up accidentally shrinking the children - recreating the horrifying ordeal Nick, his sister, and two neighbor kids went through when Wayne's shrinking ray did the same to them over three decades ago.
Honey, I Shrunk the Kids was a tremendous success when it premiered in theaters, raking in over $222 million in ticket sales against its $18 million budget. Rick Moranis would return in the 1992 sequel Honey, I Blew Up the Baby when Wayne this time accidentally enlarges the family's new baby to the size of Godzilla. Reprising the role of Wayne Szalinski for seemingly the final time, Moranis would again play the part in the 1997 follow-up Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves, which was released directly to video by Disney. A panned television series adaptation would follow with all-new actors, and after its cancellation, the franchise would remain untouched until these new developments.
Though news of Shrunk has been in the pipeline for a while now, it had long been unclear if Rick Moranis would return. The character actor famously stepped away from acting in the late '90s to focus on raising his children as a single parent, and has only made very sporadic appearances in the years since. He reprised his Spaceballs role as Lord Dark Helmet in 2018 for an episode of The Goldbergs, though it was only to voice the character. He also reportedly turned down an offer to return as Louis Tully in this year's Ghostbusters reboot, so Moranis is still clearly being very selective with what he wants to do on screen as well.
Todd Lieberman and David Hoberman are producing the project for Mandeville Films and Television. It had been speculated that Shrunk was in development for Disney+, though reports now suggest the movie is intended to be released in theaters by Disney. Let's just hope the updated take on the franchise will carry over the same charm of the original movie, and though that may sound like a tall order, it certainly helps to have Moranis personally involved. If the pitch managed to convince Moranis to return to the big screen, that's certainly a good sign. This news comes to us from Deadline.