As the Transformers franchise has transformed itself into a blockbuster giant, one of its Saturday morning cartoon contemporaries has deeply struggled to find the same success – G.I. Joe. The future of the classic action figure-turned-animated favorite is still awaiting its next move after a slew of big-screen failures culminating in a reboot with 2021’s Snake Eyes. Speaking to Collider‘s Steve Weintraub for Transformers: Rise of the Beasts, producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura said that despite the struggles, conversations are going on behind the scenes to bring the “Real American Hero” back to theaters.
Snake Eyes was meant to launch a new era of G.I. Joe films with the much-delayed G.I. Joe: Ever Vigilant moved back to make room for the reboot. However, with the struggles of the spinoff and Ever Vigilant still up in the air, there’s room to wonder whether the franchise would be better suited for a return to television. Back in 2021, Hasbro and Paramount even had a series in the works centered on Lady Jaye that would link back to the larger world established in the films.
As di Bonaventura notes, however, that never came to fruition. For now, it seems Paramount is forgoing the two-pronged approach and is instead focused on bringing G.I. Joe back in some form using what was written for their pilot to inform a future film. He explained:
“We actually developed a pilot with Amazon. This was before Paramount+, just as Paramount+ was coming in. It didn’t pan out. We are in a lot of conversations about what to do with it as a film, and so I would have to say, most likely you’re going to see that come to fruition. How soon is always impossible to say. For a long time, there were no active conversations. There’s a lot going on right now.”
G.I. Joe‘s Theatrical Reputation Is Far From Stellar
Whatever the plans are for a G.I. Joe film, it’ll have a difficult time swaying audiences considering every previous attempt has fallen flat. 2009’s G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra has been a frequent target for criticism ever since its release, earning the ire of not just fans and critics but also the film’s stars. Channing Tatum, who was only in the film out of contractual obligation, spoke out about how much he detested the films despite his love for the G.I. Joe brand as a whole, even begging to be killed off early on in G.I. Joe: Retaliation. That sequel, too, was largely panned even if the addition of Dwayne Johnson helped it fare better than its predecessor. The poor effects of a bad reputation showed in Snake Eyes, which reportedly lost Paramount money after grossing just over $40 million against an $88 million budget, not to mention hefty international marketing costs.
Stay tuned here at Collider for more as progress continues toward bringing G.I. Joe back to theaters. For the time being, di Bonaventura is focused on Transformers: Rise of the Beasts which releases on June 9.