It's not unusual to see toy lines adapted for the big screen. When I was a kid, there were plenty of these commercials-in-disguise, though most of them were animated features and they were typically spun-off from already successful television programs. But now with the live-action Transformers, Hot Wheels and Bratz coming our way, not to mention a second live-action He-Man movie, it makes sense for newer toys to just bypass the small screen and go directly to the multiplex. One of the producers of Bratz, former Toy Biz CEO (and current Marvel Studios exec) Avi Arad, apparently believes the logic; he has announced that he and producer Steven Paul are now developing a live-action feature based on the popular Robosapien toys.

The movie, which will be simply titled Robosapien, already has a script by Arad and Max Botkin (fitting name), and it is set to begin shooting this November with Bratz director Sean McNamara at the helm. As far as I know, the Robosapien toys do not have any narrative text or mythology, as many toys do, but Arad seems to have had no problem creating one. Of course, the concept he's come up with isn't too original. According to Variety, Arad has based the movie's story on the tale of Pinocchio, which was also the inspiration for Steven Spielberg's recent robot film, A.I.: Artificial Intelligence. Both ideas feature an inventor who creates a substitute child, and both feature the adventures of a boy and a robot (well, A.I. had a robot boy and a robot teddy bear), so it will be interesting to see just how similar Arad's creation actually is to the earlier pic. Even if there are enough differences between Robosapien and A.I., though, considering a master filmmaker like Spielberg couldn't please audiences with his movie, it is hard to imagine that McNamara will have greater success. Anyway, aren't most fans of the Robosapien hackers who will just end up pirating the movie off the internet rather than going to see it in theaters?