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Bill & Ted Writers' New Stop-Motion Movie Is Back In Developmen


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After over 15 years of lying dormant, Bill & Ted writers Ed Solomon and Chris Matheson's abandoned stop-motion project Automatons may finally be getting made. The project was originally one of several skits (including Bill & Ted) written by the duo for a sketch movie. However, it was dropped into development hell in 2004 after a series of hard rejections from studios got the premise labeled "too weird to work."

Automatons follows Otto and Rob, two robots created during WWII to kill Hitler, who miss their chance when their submarine sinks and spend 70 years wandering the bottom of the ocean and developing human characteristics, most notably crippling insecurity. If that doesn't sound bizarre enough, the pair then find themselves in modern Minneapolis, where Hitler and Mussolini (who are alive because they had been cryogenically frozen) are trying to redeem themselves by performing a knock-off Charlie Brown musical. In 2004, something that ridiculous would never have gotten off the ground, but times change, and ambition is in fashion when it comes to animation.

In an interview with ComingSoon.net, Solomon discussed his stop-motion passion project. Despite having an impressive voice cast, including the likes of Jack Black, John C. Reilly, Sylvester Stallone, John Cleese, and Catherine O'Hara, Automatons never came to be. Solomon and Matheson had recorded audio for the entire movie through their own financing but were rejected by every studio they brought it to for being too weird. After all these years, Solomon is still passionate about the project and even teased that the film may finally happen on Adult Swim. Solomon's quote from the interview can be read below:

Though responding to a tweet is in no way a full financing deal, Adult Swim is the perfect place for a premise as wild as Automatons. Stop-motion animation has been making a comeback carried by technological innovations at Laika, and adult animation is a particularly hot ticket right now. A marriage of the two at the absolute center of the bizarre and fearless programming universe may be a recipe for a surprising amount of success.

Bill & Ted fans would likely support a new project from Matheson and Solomon, and there's no doubt that the duo has the talent and the recognition to carry the project. However, it is possible Automatons could be too expensive for Adult Swim's usual production budgets. Adult animated films are a much less historically successful concept than their television counterparts, but in the age of halted productions and streaming explosion, it could be time for Automatons to come to life.

 

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