For my day job, I work for a major feature animation studio, and one of their coolest and most dangerous policies is that any employee can submit a pitch for a movie idea. They're looking for what they call in the biz four-quadrant movies, or what you would think of as "family" movies: Something with enough wit or thrills to keep adults interested, but doesn't involve penis jokes or disembowelment.
I've come up with quite a few ideas that were all unfortunately rejected. Not by management, technically, as I wasn't able to get as far as submitting them, but by my co-workers, who physically prevented me from hitting the "submit" button on the computer. They said something about "career suicide" and how they were "saving me from myself."
They are watching me like a hawk at work, so I'm going to put these up on Cracked and hopefully one of you guys can help me bypass these so-called gatekeepers of taste and get them in front of some studio heads. I will split the profits with you 50-50.
8Hostel (For Kids)
Hostel made a decent box office profit for a torture porn movie and got a massive amount of buzz. However, being a gratuitously gory horror movie really limits its target demographic. Imagine how many people it could reach if they remade it for a wider audience.
All you have to do is take out everything that made the movie inappropriate for kids, and you're left with, um ... people being negative to other people, and some form of red liquid.
My proposal is that we have a very mischievous young child who goes around and asks other kids if they want to look at his plastic chainsaw. While they are distracted by the brightly colored toy and its moving parts, he squirts ketchup on them, getting their clothes dirty and -- this is the scary part -- causing their parents to be mad at them. I can tone this down if it's still too horrifying.
One of the tragic victims.
7Office Space (For Kids)
"Are you just going to attach the phrase 'for kids' to the end of well-known movie titles?" you might be asking right now. Everyone keeps asking that. Is that some kind of no-no? I find that creativity goes much faster when you do the exact same thing for each project, like that time I had assignments in creative writing, American history, molecular biology and physics 8B due at the same time and I turned in a biography of Abraham Lincoln for each one.
Anyway, while Office Space didn't do so well at the box office, it took on a new life as a cult classic, and anyone would love their kids' movies to be worshiped and imitated and made into memes that get old as soon as they come into existence. I find that the themes of Office Space translate perfectly into the world of, say, a preschool, where existential ennui from the drudgery and bureaucracy of the daily routine is common. I haven't been in preschool for decades, but I think I am remembering it correctly.
So many TPS reports to finish before nap time.
I think toddlers will really be able to identify with being bored of life. What 3-year-old hasn't complained about how repetitive and mind-numbing it is to wake up in the morning every day, identify some shapes and colors, make mud pies, chase their sister around the house, color Spider-Man, play with bulldozers in the sandbox and practice pooping? It's a wonder they don't kill themselves.