As we approach Thanksgiving, Paramount decided to drop a big announcement – the making of the live action ‘Clifford the Big Red Dog’. However, the news did not spark as much love and excitement as expected.
Scholastic originally created Clifford – a big red dog – as the protagonist in a children’s book series. The series was a huge hit leading Scholastic to officially name Clifford as their mascot. Years later, PBS took on the role of bringing this lovable dog from paper to screen through a TV series that aired from 2000-2003. Classic 2000’s kids fell in love with Clifford and his owner Emily Elizabeth Howard as they embarked on their various adventures.
The Live-Action Movie
With the trend of making animated movies more realistic through live-action technology – such as Disney’s ‘The Lion King’ – Paramount decided to take part in this trend by bringing Clifford to life in a new live-action film.
On Wednesday, Paramount released a teaser of their new movie where normal dogs are lined up as the narrator says “this holiday season we are thankful for the pets that got us through the year,” referring to quarantining with our pets. As the camera approaches the end of the line, the narrator says “but get ready to love, even bigger” and pans to Clifford.
The new live-action film – which is set to premiere in theaters on November 5, 2021 – will follow middle-schooler Emily Elizabeth (Darby Camp) after she meets a magical animal rescuer (John Cleese) who gives her an adorable little red puppy. But the next morning this little puppy is no longer “little” as Emily wakes up to a giant red dog sitting in her compact New York City apartment. Throughout the film Emily, Clifford, and her fun uncle Casey (Jack Whitehall) go on adventures as they help Clifford navigate the wonders of New York City.
Twitter is Terrified of the New Clifford
Although this may seem like a lovable and cute movie, many Twitter users are terrified by the live-action Clifford’s appearance.
damn the new clifford the big red dog reveal is terrifying pic.twitter.com/kLNv8czwtP
— jillkrajewski.bsky.social (@JillKrajewski) November 25, 2020
Because the new Clifford’s fur color is a dark shade of red, some think that Clifford is covered in blood.
Some are even suggesting that the blood that covers Clifford’s fur is from the victims he squashed.
clifford is already drenched in the blood of his enemies and he isn't finished. pic.twitter.com/pb4TWe22KV
— katherine speller (@Kathriller) November 25, 2020
Others are making graphic edits of Clifford such as one alleging Clifford of killing crew members while filming.
'CLIFFORD: THE BIG RED DOG' Shooting diary
Clifford got loose again last night and killed 6 production assistants and the best boy. The whole crew has been on edge all morning. pic.twitter.com/zybsYg0uLa
— PUPPET COMBO 🎃 (@PuppetCombo) November 25, 2020
One Twitter user decided to make Clifford even more frightening by adding two more heads.
wait wait i know how we can fix the clifford movie pic.twitter.com/CiLvW48GkP
— jonny sun (@jonnysun) November 25, 2020
As filming has started, there are leaked photos of the actors and Clifford on set, and people think Clifford looks even more terrifying in person.
However, many think the live-action Clifford barely resembles the cartoon version because the live-action Clifford is not big enough.
Petition to make Clifford kaiju sized instead of this inaccurate JOKE.
Sign below. pic.twitter.com/MomI4iR5Ud
— David (@FakeEyes22) November 25, 2020
A Twitter user even claimed that the use of a red whale would be more accurate.
if clifford the big red dog were played by a whale not only would the size be more accurate but it would save the production team millions
— whalefact (@awhalefact) November 25, 2020
But there are some who are coming to Clifford’s defense.
Some are mocking those who were surprised by Clifford’s appearance as they claim that it is just a big red dog – Clifford’s exact description.
Everyone: “Wow I can’t wait to see what the live action Clifford The Big Red Dog looks like!”
Clifford: *Looks like Big Red Dog*
— Zachman (@og_starr) November 25, 2020
People hating on Clifford the Big Red Dog being a… big…red… dog?!! pic.twitter.com/DF5QukrR1i
— Dev (@AReclusiveGod) November 25, 2020
Twitter users are also debunking the claim that Clifford looks unrealistic as they do not understand what is inaccurate when it is just a big red dog.
“Clifford looks weird”
“I don’t like it, why is it realistic”
ITS LITERALLY A BIG RED DOG pic.twitter.com/7K51YmPqs1
— alvinshotjuicebox (@Liltoomuchdrank) November 25, 2020
And many are claiming that the creators behind this movie put little effort into the creation of Clifford.
behind the scenes with the Clifford CGI team pic.twitter.com/5N1JGmf7K3
— natureplayer (@natureplayer_) November 25, 2020
However, some think the new Clifford is cute.
I still don't think a live action reboot for Clifford the Big Red Dog is a good idea, but at least they made the titular canine himself look very cute! He kind of reminds me of a labrador. pic.twitter.com/YOJ9SCOd8S
— 💝 Tekki the Fairy 💝Simon's canon wife 💜🍋 (@PrincessTekki) November 25, 2020
With the announcement of another live-action film in the works, some are taking the opportunity to express their discontent with other live-action films such as Paramount’s ‘Sonic the Hedgehog.’
“Video champs and cartoons movie will never be the same….” pic.twitter.com/UzFxfCB58A
— Abcdede Films (@AbcdedeFilms) November 25, 2020
Some are even suggesting Paramount fix the film like they did with ‘Sonic the Hedgehog.’
Recently, it was announced that ‘Tom and Jerry’ would also be getting their own live-action movie, but keep their cartoon form. People are comparing the two animation styles and expressing their preference for the ‘Tom and Jerry’ movie.
One did it right pic.twitter.com/GI2wuToOkJ
— Jayden L. (@GemBiscuits) November 25, 2020
It seems that live-action movies continue to be a hit or miss, so should production companies continue down the path of live-action remakes of our favorite cartoons?
Though Clifford may look at bit odd, is it possible to overcome our fears to bring back the characters we loved as kids?