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Peter Pan is a Metaphor, Hollywood

Early this morning I was reading Katey's piece on Cinema Blend telling us that Sony was going forward with a movie called Pan, a Channing Tatum Peter Pan origin story of sorts and I just kept (figuratively) scratching my head and other sources confirm this is happening. Katey and I are of like minds on this one as we both like Tatum more than you'd think ...and more than perhaps is reasonable *ahem*. But the project just makes zero sense on paper. Or at least on paper in simple high concept form.

What to make of it all? Can't we leave Peter Pan to little boy actors? Though I feel like this should go without saying maybe Hollywood needs a little schooling. "The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up" is a conceptual metaphor. Peter Pan is not a literal story. Yes, it's about men who can't leave boyhood behind but that's the emotional gist. It's not literal. Peter Pan can but should NEVER be played by full grown men. Maybe my resistance to this is all that deep scarring from the hideous Hook twenty years ago. Christ that movie was awful. While Channing Tatum is a good ten years younger than Robin Williams was for Steven Spielberg's nadir, 30 is still too old to play Pan. Just when Hollywood had finally dropped the habit of having mature women play the flying boy do we have to have mature men take over?

I mean even back when Channing Tatum was a male model and several lbs leaner he was still way too, um, how to put this... carnal for Pan, you know? Unless they're making an entirely different movie than we think they're making!

This is not the only Peter Pan movie in development as Hollywood never stops beating its dead horses franchises and Peter Pan is in the public domain so anyone can take a crack at it. There's another movie in development that is also possibly called "Pan" which is also about a grown man although that one seems to use Peter Pan only as a skeletal concept, like Emma to Clueless or some such.

P.S. Speaking of Peter Pan, I met 2003's Tinkerbell yesterday but I have to hold the interview till the summer when her movie opens, damnit.

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Reader Comments (22)

Whatever movie they're making, I'm watching it. Channing Tatum turns me into a MTV-Girl.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJonathon

The only Pan I'd link with Chaning Tatum woul be the Greek god, and just because we equal Gree god = beauty, I don't feel particularly attracted by goat legs.


The ancient Greeks also considered Pan to be the god of theatrical criticism.

Love that, those people had a god for everything! Maybe that's why highly unfavourable reviews are called like that?

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteriggy

oh, I always liked 'Hook' Nathaniel! perhaps loving it as a kid clouds my critic lense. But doesn't maggie smith as wendy prove it has at least one redeeming quality?

whatever, Channing Tatum screen time is never unwanted in my book either.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJessica

a friend sent me this...i don't know if it's true or what, but it's very interesting and evidently, the full script of pan has leaked online. take a look scroll down after the initital info. the whole script is on there. might not be for long


March 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterchris james

Iggy -- i know. there's really something to be said for polytheism. Though I suppose the Catholics try to keep the impulse alive by having Saints for everything.

Jessica -- i hear that from time to time from people but I can't remember HOOK as anything other than atrocity ;)

March 8, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

This news makes me angry because it reminds me how underrated P.J. Hogan's "Peter Pan" with Jason Isaacs is. Can we please get that movie some respect before trying something else?

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLiz N.

Seeing Hook recently made me appreciate its ideas and what it seemed to want to do with the story. It has truly great moments, like the aging of Wendy and the line "Bangarang!" Otherwise, it's a horribly-executed movie from beginning to end, unfocused and annoying. My friends told me it's because I'm joyless. Then one of them said, "Oh, but you love Avatar? I can't trust your taste." Diss Hook to a certain generation, and they will come after you. It's scary.

Anyway, I thought he was only producing it?

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWalter

I stay far away from Channing Tatum movies. He's completely untalented.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew R.

Sounds disastrous ... unless he's in tights, in which case I'd want to see it. lol.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

He would be ascending as fast as Chris Pine if he didn't have that mumbly ghetto boy accent - he talks like Blake Lively, the mouth has marbles in it. He's not a bad actor in the right role and he seems very unpretentious in interviews - but...his ego must be fairly large to not even second guess taking this Pan movie. It stinks of disaster.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBia

I always have negative correlation to "Hook" since I got quite ill whilst watching it on one of my very first cinema trips. I didn't even like it then.

This new one sounds absurd.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn

I'm definitely of the generation that will defend Hook and I also love Channing Tatum (as stated above), so theoretically I should be all over this. Honestly it's so baffling right now that I kind of assume there's some hook--ha!-- we don't understand yet. That doesn't mean it's a good one, but it could at least shed a little light. Maybe? Am I being ridiculous and optimistic here?

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKatey

If the role of Peter Pan must to go to a grown man, maybe we can persuade Channing to hand it over gracefully to his Eagle costar/master/slave, Jamie Bell. He can Billy Elliot his way all over Neverland.

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSan FranCinema

I'm with Jessica on everything she said.

I don't care right now about the project but we'll see..

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJames T

I second Joe's comment.

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJoel

Joel -- third. it's decided! :)

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNathaniel R

"maybe we can persuade Channing to hand it over gracefully to his Eagle costar/master/slave, Jamie Bell. He can Billy Elliot his way all over Neverland."

That made me laugh way too loud. But YES to this.

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMark

Liz N.: I'm with you on that! I love the 2003 film - one of my favourites of the past decade. Great music too.

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

Tatum must be good in the art of seducing to get these lead roles all the time.

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterlily

Liz & Edward, i love that one, too. It made my top ten list that year and would still be there even if I revised for the passing of time and changing of opinion. Best film adaptation of Peter Pan ever.

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNathaniel R

Pan: Greek god.

A Faun which are horny goat horned and legged guys.

Might be that's what he will play. A Goat horned and legged escort taking care of Shrek and his Donkey(Eddie Murphy).

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterArt

Channing has far to much Peter to play Pan.

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDavid
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