In a blog post from 'Weird Al' Yankovic himself, the musical parodist and film director explained that his upcoming live-action telefilm, The Untitled Weird Al Yankovic Project, which was being produced exclusively for The Cartoon Network, has been canceled. It seems that the network is no longer interested in creating original live-action content for its audiences, instead sticking to the animated fare that it's built its name on.
But Yankovic isn't giving up on the project, which he recently finished the 4th screenplay draft on. The cult icon claims that he owns the rights to the film, and will be shopping it elsewhere. Which doesn't rule out the film being sold to a major film studio for a big screen release. According to Al, this is exactly what happened with his first foray into feature films UHF, which was a bomb when it opened in 1989 but has since gone onto become one of the biggest cult films of the last thirty years and one of MGM's biggest DVD sellers.
Here's what Yankovic had to say for himself:
"Here's what happened. As I had previously reported, after years of negotiation, I was able to sign a major production deal with Cartoon Network to provide content for them. They were primarily interested in live action features, so I pitched them on a movie idea. They loved it, and gave me the go-ahead to start working on the screenplay. I worked closely with them for several months, and after submitting my 4th draft, just when I was just about to get the official green light... Cartoon Network let me know that they were no longer in the feature film business. It was a major policy change that affected not only me, but also the dozen or so other movies of theirs that were in various stages of development. Everything just stopped. So, bad news for me, but good news for all the Cartoon Network fanboys that already hated my movie without seeing it (because apparently any live-action programming on that network would be sacrilegious). Anyway, it's not entirely bad news - the script went into turnaround, which means I'm free to sell it somewhere else. (Come to think of it, that was pretty much the exact thing that happened when I was trying to get UHF made.) So maybe it'll get produced at some point, maybe it won't... all I know is, I'll have a lot more free time this fall."