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Tobey Maguire Executive Producing Animated Feature ‘Cardboard’ With Fox and WedgeWorks

Written by on September 7, 2012 

What a weird few months Tobey Maguire‘s been having. When summer began, we expected two big-scale 3D extravaganzas to bear his name by the year’s end, the sort of great prospect only alleviated by (comparatively smaller) news such as his casting in Labor Day. Some momentum was sucked out of the room when The Great Gatsby fell back about six months, though that unfortunate turn was compensated for by Z for Zachariah, Pawn Sacrifice, and an animal drama produced with Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hardy. It was going great!

Oh, but then he lost a role in Life of Pi.

It’s a big mess of things on his front, and I don’t know how much this next item really changes the game. Tobey Maguire is probably happy, though, since Variety have learned he’ll be using his Material Pictures to executive produce Fox Animation and WedgeWorks’ Cardboard; “happy” because money should be somewhere down the line on this one. Right?

All parties have just acquired the new kid’s book from Doug TenNapel, in which “an impoverished widower who gives a disappointing birthday present to his young son — a cardboard box.” Sort of an unusual start for this kind of picture, though it fits into that mold more when the father-son pair take the box and shape it into a boxer, Billy, who “magically comes to life, attracting the attention of a neighborhood bully with evil plans.

Maguire may end up doing some voice work in the film — either as the father or the boxer, hopefully, because playing the kid would be creepy — so long as it actually does happen. Much of that rests upon Chris Wedge (Ice Age) hoping to make this a follow-up to next year’s Epic; I expect that film’s performance will have a profound impact on where Cardboard ends up going. If you want to see it happen, I suspect buying a ticket for that film come next summer will do some good.

Do the team and scenario behind Cardboard lend any hope or sense of interest?

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