A computer-animated film adaptation of the vastly popular Scooby-Doo cartoon series titled S.C.O.O.B. is in the works at Warner Bros., and we now know who Warner have planned to direct, or rather co-direct, the latest cinematic outing for Mystery Inc.
Dax Shepard (director of Hit & Run) will be co-directing alongside the Emmy nominated Tony Cervone, who has directed several animated projects for Warner Bros. before such as Scooby-Doo! and Kiss: Rock and Roll Mystery. Shepard is mainly known for his acting in such projects as Parenthood, Idiocracy and Without a Paddle, although recently begun directing his own projects. Shepard is currently directing and starring in CHiPs, an adaptation of the 1977 television show that focused on the lives of two motorcycle police officers of the California Highway Patrol which is due to hit US cinemas next August. Shepard was initially set to collaborate with screenwriter Matt Lieberman, before being offered a larger role. Warner Bros. wanting to reteam with Shepard indicates they must have confidence in his current project, CHiPs, further evidenced by his upgraded role on S.C.O.O.B..
Multiple directors on animated features is not uncommon at all, and Warner diving into their existing talent pool could proof beneficial, as Cervone certainly has experience with their animated characters. Cervone has directed numerous straight-to-DVD adaptations of popular Warner Bros. animated characters including Scooby-Doo and Tom & Jerry, and has also directed episodes for their various TV shows including Duck Dodgers and The Loony Tunes Show.
S.C.O.O.B. is far from the first film adaptation of the Scooby-Doo cartoons, with two live-action theatrical films, Scooby-Doo and Scoody-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, being released in 2002 and 2004 respectively. Both films were directed by Raja Gosnell (Big Momma’s House) and written by James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy), with Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Freddie Prinze Jr. (I Know What You Did Last Summer), Matthew Lillard (Without a Paddle) and Linda Cardellini (Avengers: Age of Ultron) in starring roles. However, both films were critically panned, and the following prequels were straight to DVD.
Matthew Lillard continued playing the role of Shaggy since 2010 in animation form, where he reprised his role on the series Scooby-Doo: Mystery Incorporated, and has continued to do so since for several animation films and TV shows. No casting has been announced as of yet for S.C.O.O.B., but it’s not outside the realm of possibility that Lillard could once again play Shaggy in a theatrical film, albeit animated. Scooby-Doo and friends are no stranger to animated feature films, either, having starred in over thirty animated TV specials and Direct-to-Video films, although this will be the first with a theatrical release.
S.C.O.O.B. is currently set for release on 21st September 2018.