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Kung Fu Panda Helmer To Adapt Cult Comic Bone As Warner Plots Trilogy Plans

The Hollywood Reporter brings word that Mark Osborne, director of Kung Fu Panda, will adapt cult comic Bone for the big screen.


Kung Fu Panda helmer Mark Osborne has been brought aboard to adapt cult comic Bone for the big screen, according to The Hollywood Reporter, as Warner Bros. lays the foundations for a bona fide CG trilogy.

Pitched as a “very special and unconventional tale,” Bone is the product of celebrated cartoonist Jeff Smith, and follows three gregarious cousins: Fone Bone, Phoney Bone and finally, Smiley Bone. Combining elements of comedy and full-blown fantasy, Smith’s self-published series ran from 1991-2004 and spanned 55 issues in total, lending WB plenty of source material to mine for future, cinematic content. THR notes that Mark Osborne will leverage script duties with Adam Kline (Artemis Fowl).

Nickelodeon had originally held adaptation rights, though after plans for a TV series fell through some years ago, Warner Bros. swooped in to acquire the property in 2008. It’s been a long time coming, then, but a CG animated movie based on Bone is now closer than ever. In a statement provided to The Hollywood Reporter, Mark Osborne drew attention to the comic’s raw potential.

“Bone is very special and unconventional because it blends elements together that you don’t necessarily expect — soft, little comic characters and epic high-stakes fantasy adventure. To carry this into the cinematic realm presents both an opportunity to represent what readers of all ages have loved about the series, while pushing animated storytelling into exciting and different areas.”

Coming off the release of fellow CG feature The Little Prince, Mark Osborne will now spearhead Warner’s big-screen rendition of Bone. Dan Lin and Zareh Nalbandian, best known for their work on The LEGO Movie, are among the producers attached.

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Michael Briers