I really love the old Rats of NIMH book, and even though the animated film, Secret of NIMH, doesn’t adhere all that closely to it, I love it as well. As such, I’m kind of torn on how to feel about these new live-action/CGI hybrid films that will be releasing. Deadline reported that MGM has bought up the rights to the books (yes including the two sequels) and hired Michael Berg (Ice Age 5) to write the script for the first in a planned series, which will be:
“an origin story in which an imperiled mouse protagonist befriends a comical crew of lab rats as they turn hyper-intelligent. They escape a secret laboratory and become the great minds of vermin civilization, forced to outwit the humans hot on their tails.”
This is the basic story that was alluded to in the first book, with the “mouse protagonist” likely being Mrs. Frisby’s husband who is already passed away by the events in the book. So likely, this first movie will tell his sotry, with Mrs. Frisby’s adventure saved for the next one…maybe. Honestly, I’m just kind of guessing based on the rough plot we’ve been given, so don’t hold me to this.
As I said, I’m not sure how to feel about this development. On one hand, I’m really surprised it’s taken THIS long for someone to bring the books back to the big screen in this type of way. The book is a classic tale and seems like something ripe with potential for a franchise, with plenty of drama, comedy, and action to keep audiences of all ages engaged. On the other hand, I really don’t want them to mess it up. Hollywood hasn’t exactly been successful with all their CGI/live-action films based on beloved children’s properties (i.e. The Smurfs and Alvin & the Chipmunks) and I worry it’ll go down that route instead of being a darker more serious film…like the book is.
I guess we’ll have to wait and see, but it’s happening regardless. What do you guys think about new Rats of NIMH movies being made? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!