Stretch Armstrong Screenwriter Compares the Tone of the Movie to Iron Man
05.20.10 by BJSprecher
When Universal first announced plans to adapt Hasbro's Stretch Armstrong toy into a 3-D live-action movie starring Taylor Lautner, a lot of people were left scratching their heads and wondering what the movie could possibly be about. After all, there's no healthy backstory for the half-naked man with a stretchy body — unlike toy-to-movie adaptations G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra and Transformers, which both had a wealth of animated episodes and comic books to draw on for inspiration. Turns out, the character's "blank slate" is what made the movie such an enticing project for screenwriter Nick Stoller.
Rob [ Letterman, director] had a great take on Stretch and he told me about it, and I said, "Please let me write it." It's a superhero origin story taking it totally seriously, kind of in the Iron Man tone —for lack of a better descriptor. We're taking it seriously, but it will have a light tone to it. Hasbro has an idea of it and it's based on a new version of that character. It's kind of a blank slate. There wasn't really much of a backstory to the original Stretch Armstrong so we're just kind of inventing it from the ground up.
Stoller, whose previous writing credits include low-budget comedies Fun with Dick and Jane and Yes Man, said that another thing that excited him about Stretch Armstrong was the opportunity to work on a big special-effects extravaganza.
It's more about creating a universe of superheroes that I'm really excited about. Rob and I have cracked a pretty cool story I think and Rob has a really cool take on what this can be, and it's going to be a huge budget spectacular thing. I love Iron Man, I love The Dark Knight and it's exciting to get to play in this world, because the budgets of these comedies are pretty small, and to get to do something that's just gigantic and exciting but a totally grounded human story at the center of it that I think people are going to respond to.
Stretch Armstrong is being produced by Academy Award–winner Brian Grazer (A Beautiful Mind), in association with Hasbro's Brian Goldner and Bennet Schneir. Initially, Steve Oedekerk (Evan Almighty) was listed as the screenwriter, but no mention was made of his involvement with the movie in the ComingSoon interview with Stoller.