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SYFY WIRE Rick Moranis

WIRE Buzz: Rick Moranis returns to screen; A Quiet Place writers land Sam Raimi sci-fi; Looney Tunes

By Jacob Oller
Rick Moranis Disney+ Prop Culture

Beloved comedy actor and Honey, I Shrunk the Kids star Rick Moranis has broken his long absence in front of the screen thanks to a new episode of the Disney+ behind-the-scenes show Prop Culture. The fifth episode of the prop-centric show focused on the 1989 sci-fi hit with the self-explanatory title, which will soon see a reboot (Shrunk) from its original helmer and star. Now the man behind Wayne Szalinski has returned from his long absence to talk all things Shrinking ahead of the new film.

Speaking with host Dan Lanigan, Moranis remembered working with director Joe Johnson on the original film. "He had the vision of this in his head. And on that movie, I was really an actor,” Moranis said. “I think I drove him crazy a couple of times trying to get more comedy into it 'cause I was always looking for how to disrupt and get some more jokes in, and poor Joe just wanted to make his movie."

Now that he’ll be teaming up with Josh Gad, who is set to play Moranis’ adult son in the reboot, the actor is also thinking about the future of the franchise. "If [Honey, I Shrunk the Kids] were made today, it would be made very differently, probably just with green screen and computer-generated stuff," he said. Moranis also focused on the subject matter of the show itself: props. He did snag a few things from set, but only for practical purposes.

"The only thing I did save from the movies I was in, because I was using prescription glasses, I would usually take a pair of glasses," Moranis said. "I also kept a few 8 x10 photos and used to raise money at auctions. Everything is gone now." 

Shrunk has yet to announce a release date but Moranis' episode of Prop Culture is available on Disney+ now.

Next, a pair of Hollywood’s hottest horror creators have signed on with one of the genre’s legends. Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, the pair whose script for A Quiet Place launched John Krasinski as a franchise director, recently wrote and directed a feature (Haunt) and an episode of Sam Raimi’s Quibi show 50 States of Fright. Now they’re reteaming with the Evil Dead filmmaker.

Variety reports that Beck and Woods will write and direct a new, untitled sci-fi film at Sony Pictures, with Raimi on board to produce. While the story is an original (possibly another potential franchise starter) the whole thing is very secretive. No plot details or even working title are being made public.

“After A Quiet Place we knew we had a responsibility to reinvest back into the ecosystem of original ideas,” said Beck and Woods in a statement. Raimi’s statement was similarly light on details, though he described the project as “a wild and thrilling blockbuster.”

No production schedule for the new project has yet been set.

Finally, as HBO Max moves into the streaming sphere, all its genre offerings are getting teased out. Some got brief glimpses and teasers that numbered in the seconds rather than minutes. Others, like the service’s upcoming Looney Tunes revival Looney Tunes Cartoons, dropped an entire mini-episode.

This five-minute cartoon, titled “Pest Coaster,” takes animation fans to the amusement park and shows off just what kind of new talent the classic group of WB weirdos would be working with.

Check it out:

Directed by Ryan Kramer from a script by Kramer, Pete Browngardt, and Johnny Ryan, “Pest Control” introduces a new Bugs Bunny (Eric Bauza) and Yosemite Sam (Fred Tatasciore) to the canon. Of course, Bugs is crossdressing even at this Disneyland riff. What do you think of the new take on the Looney Tunes?

HBO Max launches on May 27.