Full disclosure: the idea of Charles M. Schultz‘s seminal Peanuts comic strips and cartoons, which introduced the world to Charlie Brown and Snoopy, being updated from its original 2D animation style makes my blood boil and a shiver run up my spine. This may just be nostalgia, but from the first moment a 3D Charlie Brown was introduced to the world via a teaser trailer for the forthcoming The Peanuts Movie, everything about the proposed update made my blood run cold, which is strange for a film about adorable, intelligent children hanging out with a wise dog and his bird friend.
Still, this entire mishigas felt just a bit inevitable, and Hollywood has rarely been precious with titles that most people hold in high regard. So, the images of Charlie Brown trying to dance to modern dance tunes in the latest trailer for The Peanuts Movie isn’t so much surprising as it is unsettlingly desperate, an attempt to connect a younger generation to Schultz’s classic set of characters while simultaneously connecting with older fans of Schultz’s world via The Who’s “Baba O’Riley.” The gags, on the other hand, suggest a more old-fashioned sense of action and physical timing, such as when the fence falls down with Charlie Brown attempting to take a gander at the new girl at school. Moments like these keep my skepticism at bay for this project, but it’s hard to not be immediately suspicious of an updated version of Peanuts, especially one helmed by the people behind Ice Age and Rio, two of the more ignorable animated film franchises to be released as of late.
Here’s the new trailer for The Peanuts Movie:
On top of this, 20th Century Fox is now allowing you to make your own Peanuts avatar right here, a promotion that has already taken over my Facebook feed with the force of 20 Ice Bucket Challenges. It’s a pretty cool promotion, but we’ll still have to wait until The Peanuts Movie sees release on November 6th to see if all of this malarkey was worth it.