JJ Abrams In Talks For Micronauts Movie + Zombie Movie? + Directing TV Pilot [UPDATED]

Star Trek director/producer JJ Abrams continues to build his portfolio of projects in development. Today its being reported that Abrams is producing a movie based on the Micronauts toy line. There is also a rumor that he has another Cloverfield-like project in development. [UPDATE: Plus news on Abrams NBC spy show]


Micronauts: The Movie
Micronauts were a popular toyline in the 70s from Japan, imported to the US my Mego (in Japan they were called "Micromen"). The toyline was based on 3.75" figures with a wide assortment of vehicles and accessories.

In a story in today’s Wall Street Journal on toys that are being made into movies it was reported that JJ Abrams is in talks to bring Micornauts to the big screen. Hasbro recently acquired Micronauts. More info at wsj.com.

And here is a Mircronauts commercial from the 70s.

JJ Abrams Zombie movie?
The other Abrams story is more of a rumor at this stage. Pajiba.com is reporting that Abrams and his production company Bad Robot are "secretly developing" a movie called 500 Rads, which will be a lower budget film ($25 Million) shot in Europe. No details on the project, but the title suggests it has something to do with radiation. Jeff Pinkner is reportedly working on the script. More info at pajiba.com.

UPDATE: Abrams to direct spy show Pilot
Last month we reported that JJ Abrams had sole a pilot for a spy show to NBC. Now The Hollywood Reporter has news that the show is called "Undercovers", and Abrams is in talks to direct the pilot. If his schedule permits, it would be the first pilot he has directed since Lost. 

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I absolutely don’t remember Micronauts. They somehow flew under my radar. From looking at that commercial I don’t see why anyone would want to make a movie based on them. JJ, pass on this one please!

Unless they’re paying you just to put your name on the project, I guess.

Dude, I had Micronauts toys when I was a kid. They were kind of cool, roboty looking chromish guys and were made out of metal, not plastic. Cool stuff to play with but I would think they were rather obscure subject matter to make a film out of.

And just what the world needs: another zombie movie.

Has there been a bad JJ PROJECT he directed? I can’t think of one, micronaunts, hummm. Can anyone think of a clunker?

1) What the hell is a micronut? Maybe we’ll get one for the old Evil Knievel next? How about Gnip-Gnop: The Movie?

2) Zombies? Do we really need more zombies? Today’s network programming (“I Want To Date My Next Door Neighbor’s Weight Loss Cat?”) would indicate there are many that actually live among us, but really.

Actually I rather like the ideas by #’s 4 and 5.

A movie about Micron-aunts. They squeeze your cheeks and can walk through the eye of a needle.

Micronuts. They’re either crazy and small or they lack the intestinal fortitude to stand up to their wives.

Wasn’t Micromen one of the 2 brands (the other being Diaclone) that Hasbro merged into the brand we now call “Transformers?”

I hope he’s attached to the “Monopoly” and “Sorry!” movies. And let’s not forget the chilling “Weeble Wobble” film slated for 2012.

The Micronaut comic books by Marvel were pretty good as I remember. Never owned the toys but the comics had great stories and some interesting characters. perhaps that is the angle they are going with and not the toy line itself. There was an X-Men/Micronauts Crossover line that I read over and over again in Junior High. That story line was great. Search for the Micronaut Comic Wiki to learn more about the story.

Wow! I had totally forgotten about the Micronaut toys. I had both of the toys featured in that commercial!

Now they just need to make a movie about Stretch Armstrong.

The trend toward movie-toy-reboots-alliances, is depressing. Some skeptics saw GI Joe and changed their minds. I saw it and confirmed that it was crap.

Basically, GI Joe was the film that Team America World Police preemptively parodied years before it was made, and they STILL made it!

Once someone finds gold in them thar hills, no corner of kiddie land is safe from (Your Toy Here)—The Movie.

Surprised to see so little recognition of Micronauts. Their heyday was about the same time as the original Star Wars figures from Kenner. They were almost the same scale so you could mix them up to a degree.

Micronauts would make a great console game where you can actually fly the ships, drive the vehicles, man the turrets, defend the base etc in all the ways you imagined with the toys. But maybe only if you had the toys.

Micronauts were made by Takara in Japan. The same company that later gave us Transformers! Micronauts were ahead of their time. I’m anxious to see what Hasbro has in store for them.

I had a couple of Micronauts back in the day… still got ’em around here somewhere…

They were kind of Gundam-looking… and they did kind of “transform” (you could re-assemble them in different ways)… some of them had pretty nice articulation…

I never did get that G.I. Joe I wanted: the scuba diver with the fuzzy beard and hair (and “kung-fu grip”!) ‘sniff =(

I like the nostalgia trend… gives me a “warm fuzzy”…

Zombie movie, eh? I suppose that’s one way to bring back Shatner, but you couldn’t have thought up something less… drastic?

Like #9 said, the Mirconaut comics in the late 1970’s early 1980’s were great. Go to Mile High Comics and pick up issues #1 to #12 and I guarantee it will blow your mind. The art work is great and the story is begging to be made into a movie. I’m 40+ years old and I still have a original Baron Karza figure minus the fist that shot out like a rocket.

A few thoughts…

– Marvel owns various characters created within its Micronauts comic books, like “Bug.” It’s doubtful that we’ll see this character in the new movie. Not sure about the Devil’s Due Publishing (DDP) comic books.

– Those original Micronauts toys were poorly constructed. The materials were awful; they broke easily, imho.

Here’s to hoping that J.J. and Co. create a movie which does justice to the great stories produced by Bill Mantlo, Michael Golden and Pat Broderick!

I always thought they were pretty weird looking toys, but the more I looked at them, the more beautiful they became. Those metallic heads and cybernetic bodies.

Especially attractive were Baron Karza and Oberon. I loved the magnetic ball and socket joints and those horses they rode. I would love to be able to put those guys on a shelf in my house now.

I look forward to a movie.

Micronauts were fantastic toys. All of them — and I mean ALL of them — had parts that were interchangeable, so you could take them apart and reassemble them into new and different toys, based only on your imagination. And there were lots of motorized pieces, so you could build really incredible things that could roll around on your floor — unless your parents had ’70s shag carpeting, in which case it would get wrapped around the axles and ruin your toys. ;)

Has everybody forgotten “Cloverfield?” If you remember, he covered up the production of that movie by claiming that he was working on a “Voltron” movie. The whole “Micronauts” thing is no doubt another cover story for a project he’s REALLY working on, but is keeping secret. Seems to be his modus operandi

Micronauts were great toys that pre-dated STAR WARS by a bit.

And the first 11 (?) issues of THE MICRONAUTS from Marvel back in the day would be the best basis for a film.

I hope JJ doesn’t spread himself too thin.

20: “Micronauts were fantastic toys. All of them — and I mean ALL of them — had parts that were interchangeable, so you could take them apart and reassemble them into new and different toys, based only on your imagination.”

Oh, so micronauts were, umm, basically a more flexible version of TRANSFORMERS???

hmmmm well tonite JJS Fringe was on. Another good episode…..as i was watching I was thinking that Scully and Mulder should guest star on fringe since the show is sooo much like x files….maybe combine the two FOX series hehehe

I said it before and I’ll say it again: Fringe is basically the new X Files.

24. Oh, so micronauts were, umm, basically a more flexible version of TRANSFORMERS???


Loved Micronauts!! I actually forgot about them until I saw this….

New Spy show huh??? How about an updated or “re-imagined” Assignement Earth???

10. Robofuzz – November 5, 2009
Wow! I had totally forgotten about the Micronaut toys. I had both of the toys featured in that commercial!

Now they just need to make a movie about Stretch Armstrong

They are! Check out IMDB.com and search “Stretch Armstrong”.

Oh my God, now he’s gonna ruin Micronauts!

25. Jim Nightshade: “…tonite JJ’s Fringe was on. Another good episode…..”

AGREED!! That was an EXCELLENT episode! My favorite show!

…especially when the shadow killed the cosmonaut’s brother! great ending too!

I liked the use of the tinkertoys, but complex molecules could NOT be modeled using them. (Only thing that bothered me, easily overlooked)

If they make the next Star Trek movie in the style of this show, I think they could have a REAL winner on their hands!

Loved the Micronauts toys as a kid, and loved the first dozen issues of the comic. Classic Michael Golden artwork. I could see them turning that into a really cool movie if done right.

I remember combining Baron Karza and his horse into a centaur. Wicked cool.

Man, I loved the Micronauts, both the toys and the comics. Not only was that first story arc great, but the one with the return of Baron Karza was fantastic.

One of my fav comic scenes was the one with Force Commander screaming that none of the things he’s done was his fault. He then plunges his hands into his armored chest and rips it open only for Karza to rise up from his body… so freaking awesome.

Micronauts? – why not masters of the universe or a live action thundercats or Voltron or Go-bots/Machine Men

Stretching a little bit thin, eh JJ?

I’d guess “500 Rads” is a reference to radiation exposure. Of course, in nuclear physics, we don’t use rads, we’ve moved on to an SI unit called “gray”, so “5 Grays” would be more accurate. That suggests it isn’t a zombie movie, but a Gray alien adventure. Of course combining ET with zombies could get interesting! That would be a kooky twist.

As to “Undercovers” sounds like a weekly James Bondage… if NBC yanks Jay Leno, they’ll quickly need a new drama or 5.

Didn’t Robot Chicken already redo Micronauts?

I LOVED the Micronauts!

I now await the overly hyped sophmoric commerically popular destruction of my childhood.

Carry on.

Loved the Micronauts. The toys and the comic books. I hope he makes the movie. ::tic::

JJ+Zombies = Exploding Zombies?

I’d pay to see that.

I was a huge Micronauts fan- the toys- and the comic was pretty good too. They were the last toys I got into before I got to that age where you grow out of toys, actually come to think of it a bit older than that haha I think my mum was worried I was a bit retarded. There was no nerd chic in the 70s, sadly, as we had no internets.

Come to think of it, we didn’t have much at all. Three TV channels, one of which was always the cricket, and a hoop and stick to play with, that was it, and you had to play monopoly at Christmas. Kids today, they wouldn’t believe you.

Micronauts were pretty cool though, a ray of sunshine in the grey years between 1969 and 1980 as the post-war socialist system crashed around our ears in ruins.

There was some quite good music, also.

JJ doing cartoons now? I’m sure Micronauts seemed pretty cool to kids in the 70’s, but Star Wars and Transformers have long since rendered that line obsolete, unless Hasbro does a major updating and reimagining job then the franchise might sell again.

But I just assume JJ stick with Trek or other more adult oriented projects.

Well “I’m dead Jim,” it looks like good news that you’re word means nothing in Hollywood.

The Micronauts launched the 3 3/4 inch figures that inspired Star Wars, GI Joe and all others since the mid 70’s. The comic books were always an interesting read and the toys had interchangeable parts and magnets that were definitely cutting edge for their time.

Baron Karza, Force Commander(Prince Argon), Space Glider (Commander Rann), Marionette, Acroyear, and Galactic Warrior “Bug” were bad ass characters that could be MAJOR blockbuster.

If JJ Abrams executes it the way he did with the new Star Trek, it will DESTROY all science fiction movies since The Empire Strikes Back.

Micronauts kick ass! They actually were predecessors to and inspired the creation of transformers. I loved ’em.