Imagining a 'Family Circus' movie -- as directed by Fincher, Burton, Eastwood...

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Golly gee willikers, funnies fans! The circus is coming to town — The Family Circus, that is! (Nailed it.)

While a film adaptation of everyone’s fourth-favorite one-panel comic has been in development since 2010, Fox and Walden Media have only just selected a writing team to pen a script. Nichole Millard and Kathryn Price seem like the right pair for the job; their first movie, 2007’s The Game Plan, was a feel-good family flick about the joys of parenthood. As long as they can come up with some killer “pasketti and meat bulbs” jokes, they’ll be good to go.

But Millard and Price’s script can only take The Family Circus: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut so far. Film is a director’s medium — and material this rich is sure to attract a stable of big names. How could each of the contenders put his own stamp on the project? Let’s play a game of Bil Keane-approved make believe.

David Fincher
A grown-up Billy (Jesse Eisenberg) has graduated from nicking cookies to robbing banks — and now he’s leading a team of cops on a wild goose chase over the fence, up the tree, down the tree, into the fountain, inside the doghouse, under the garage…

Clint Eastwood
In the director’s first foray into broad comedy, protagonist Granddad (Eastwood) grumpily watches his family’s antics from heaven — occasionally pausing to growl “Get off my cloud” at mischievous angels.

Werner Herzog
It’s actually an adaptation of The Nietzsche Family Circus.

Judd Apatow
Affable P.J. (Clark Duke) may have gotten older, but he still hasn’t grown up — he’s been living with his parents ever since he graduated college. Can the inexplicable love of a hot, funny, perfect woman with a really good job (Kat Dennings) get him out of his rut? Leslie Mann, Paul Rudd, Jonah Hill, Seth Rogen, and the rest of the cast of Freaks and Geeks also star.

Woody Allen
Every actor you’ve ever heard of has a cameo. For some reason, it’s set in Zurich.

Tim Burton
The family’s members are all mad-scientist vampire ghosts. It’s stop-motion animated. Oh, and Helena Bonham Carter voices all the characters.

Your turn!

Read more:
‘Family Circus': The best of Bil Keane
Bil Keane of ‘Family Circus’ dies
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