We Need A Live-Action THUNDERCATS Movie, And Here’s How To Do It

The Thundercats! One of the most classic cartoons of all time and one of the most popular cartoons to come out of the 80’s, a key time for action cartoons in the US.  While Thundercats is well known in the minds of the public with both past and current generations having their own incarnation of the TV show, including the original running from 1985-1989 as well as an animated movie, and the more recent yet short lived 2011 reboot, we’ve never seen a live action rendition of the adventures of Lion-O and his crew.  While other franchises of the same time period and popularity  such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Transformers, and G.I. Joe have been brought to life in arguably successful ways in one way or another, just how would a live action Thundercats be made now or in the near future?   Well I don’t have the Sword of Omens to give me sight beyond sight, but if they were going to make a big budget live action Thundercats movie, here’s how they should go about it.


First, let’s talk tone and direction. This is for a modern audience, and like many cartoons the 80’s, Thundercats is strictly stuck in the 80’s.  The 2011 incarnation did the smart thing in updating the characters and story.  It gave each character a new depth and an even darker tone while still maintaining the spirit and feel of the original series. Make sure that a live-action movie follows the direction and example set by this latest version.


Thundercats takes place on the planet of 3rd Earth, a fantasy fans paradise filled with all kinds of creative locations and creatures that the team travels with all throughout. Something like Thundercats should be given the same direction and feel of the great Middle-Earth movies, such as Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. With so many different characters, such as the mechanical bears known as Berbils and The Warrior Maidens, as well as adventures from both incarnations to be chosen from, the possibilities are endless. This can also offer opportunities for Lion-O to grow as a man and leader  by facing various tasks and challenges, as was a tradition in both shows. After all, morals have always been a big part of Thundercats.


Of course the main nemesis would be none other than Mumm-Ra and his horde of reptilian baddies. Something as badass as a dark magic-infused mummy would wow audiences of all types if done properly. He is, of course, the main reason for our hero’s journey in both versions, and a string puller for other enemies they have faced. But of course, we all want to see the final confrontation putting the wretched sorcerer against the valiant Thundercats in an epic final battle.

 "Ancient Spirits of Evil, transform this decayed form to Mumm-Ra, the Ever-Living!"

“Ancient Spirits of Evil, transform this decayed form to Mumm-Ra, the Ever-Living!”

Now let’s talk effects. This could be the deal breaker right here. If the Thundercats themselves look too silly or creepy, that could deter a lot of people.  Again, I would say go the route of the 2011 series. The character designs would certainly be easier for a modern live action transition.  This movie would have great potential to show a good even balance of practical and CGI effects, especially for set pieces and action scenes again like the previously mentioned Lord of the Rings movies.

One last thing? Put the Thundercats theme song in there, at the end credits or something.

So will this movie ever happen? Who’s to say, but I think it would be a very epic experience and I’m sure fans would agree. Until then, we always have plenty of other Thundercats media to enjoy!