Stuck in between the current crisis over global warming and Me Decade dedication to ecology was the ’90s attempt at addressing the environment, otherwise known as ‘Captain Planet.’ The brainchild of Turner Broadcasting and DiC (famous for their anime-like cartoon ‘The Real Ghostbusters‘ and ‘Inspector Gadget’), it was meant to kill two social birds with one animated stone. During the last decade of the millennium, the government pushed to have more educational content in children’s programming (hoping to avoid the 30 minute cartoon commercial mentality that swept through the ’80s) while stations like TBS and TNT were hoping to expand their demographic into the lucrative kiddie market.
Enter ‘Captain Planet and the Planeteers.’ The main premise (conceived of by none other than Ted Turner himself) had five teens from all over the world – North America, Africa, Eastern Europe, Asia and South America – granted powers by a spirit known as Gaia. Their job was to protect us from pollution and other harms to the habitat. When their abilities alone were not enough, the joined together to summon Captain Planet, a green-haired superhero/elemental warrior. As with an offering of this type, there were also a number of archvillains, including Dr. Blight, Verminous Skumm, Duke Nukem, and Looten Plunder.
In the late ’90s there was talk of a translation to the big screen, but according to The Hollywood Reporter, it never got past the script stage. There was also an attempt in the 2000s to bring it back as a live action series. Now, the production trio of Mark Gordon, Don Murphy and Susan Montford are negotiating with Sony to make ‘Captain Planet’ another in a long line of profitable family film franchises. No word on whether they will stay with the animation approach (though, today, it would almost assuredly be a CG project) or go the real people route (like a recent Funny or Die sketch featuring Don Cheadle as a power mad version of the good guy). No word yet on who will write or direct.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter