Back in April, Robert Zemeckis lit a stick of movie news dynamite — Acme brand, of course — and tossed it our way: 20 years after “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” hit theaters and revolutionized the science and art of cinema special effects, after countless false starts and dashed cartoon dreams, the director was planning a sequel.
“I’ll tell you what is buzzing around in my head now that we have the ability—the digital tools, performance capture—I’m starting to think about ’Roger Rabbit,'” he said at the time.
Then a couple weeks ago, Zemeckis told the folks over at Ain’t It Cool News that not only was a sequel being actively discussed, but that the director had spoken with his old “Rabbit” star Bob Hoskins about reprising his unforgettable role of private investigator Eddie Valiant.
“He loves Eddie Valiant and he would love to do it,” Zemeckis said. “We talk about it and it’s something we are thinking about.”
Was it really gonna happen? Well, MTV News has learned exclusively that if a “Rabbit” sequel does move forward, it will do so without Hoskins in the role of Valiant. Not gonna lie, folks—my eyes went a little moist as I wrote that last sentence, just as they did when he told me the news. Alas, it’s the truth.
“The thing is, you act with cartoons, you got to be able to bounce off the walls like a cartoon,” Hoskins told MTV News in an interview while promoting his Zemeckis-directed performance capture flick, “A Christmas Carol.” “So I’m too old. I’m too old now.”
What about those conversations with Zemeckis? What about the scandalous idea of our loveable cartoon rabbit running around without Valiant reluctantly by his side? Surely Hoskins and Zemeckis could find a way to make it work.
But the 66-year-old British actor was resolute: he just can’t give Valiant that high-energy physicality he once could. That’s not to say he’s against the idea of a Valiant-less “Rabbit.” Zemeckis will just have to figure out a way to continue or reboot the mythology without him.
“I think he could do a sequel,” Hoskins said with a laugh. “He wouldn’t be able to do it with me. I’m too old!”
What do you think about a “Roger Rabbit” without Hoskins? Who else could would be a good pick to play off the cartoon bunny?