Last week, news outlets buzzed with news that Men in Black series director Barry Sonnenfeld would make a movie about the Metal Men, a DC Comics super team that debuted in the 1960’s. Sonnenfeld told ComicBookMovie.com in May that he’d spoken to Warner Bros. (DC’s parent company) about “doing a franchise based on a comic that hasn’t been around since the 60s, but it’s too early to talk about it.”
But Vulture started talking about it on June 21 and said that their spies confirmed the team in question was indeed the Metal Men. According to FirstShowing.net, a Metal Men movie project had been in development since 2007 thanks to seasoned superhero film producer Lauren Shuler Donner, the woman behind every film in the successful X-Men franchise. However, the project seemed to have dropped off the map until this year’s news.
io9 covered the news as well in article with the thought-provoking title, “Could The Metal Men Break the Curse of DC’s Non-Batman Superhero Films?” And that’s a good question. DC hasn’t had much success with its superhero movies recently except for Christopher Nolan’s Batman series, so could a family friendly, CGI-powered movie about a bunch of quirky robot superheroes in the style of The Incredibles or Toy Story make a nice, profitable dent in the box office?
Oh, and for those of you who wondering why I’m suggesting a Metal Men movie could have an Incredibles or Toy Story tone, I guess I should explain. In the comics, the Metal Men are robots with human personalities who were developed by robotics genius Will Magnus. Each member is based on and named after an element of the period table—Gold, Mercury, Tin, Iron, Lead, and Platinum—and has a different color. Even though they’re robots, they’ve often been portrayed as cheery, upbeat do-gooders who protect humanity with 1950s, Disney-esque aplomb, and they’re a tight-knit family to boot.
That could be a fantastic recipe for a movie about good-natured, kid friendly automatons who love humans and just want to belong in society. It practically has made-by-Pixar written all over it.
Let’s just hope that Hollywood doesn’t pit the Metal Men against Magneto, or else the film will turn into Metal Massacre. (Yeah, yeah, I know. But I just couldn’t resist.)