Coyote Vs. Acme Still Doesn’t Have A Clear Fate, And As A Looney Tunes Fan I’m Frustrated

Film News

If you’re a fan of animation, especially someone who loves and respects the Looney Tunes legacy, you’ve been following the story of how Coyote vs. Acme might be shelved for good over at Warner Bros. Discovery. The latest round of whispers seemed to suggest that the company’s recent Q4 2023 earnings call would give the world an update on whether we’d see this film on the 2024 movie schedule, or if the deletion of director Dave Green’s completed film will stick this time. 

Well that call has come and gone, and neither Coyote vs. Acme, nor the animated brand it hails from, were mentioned. And as a Looney Tunes fan, I’m even more frustrated now than I was when this matter kicked off. Considering the history of what’s led to this moment, it’s not hard to see why either. So before I get too in depth, let’s have a quick history lesson in the road that’s been run. 

Wile E. Coyote in Looney Tunes: Back in Action

(Image credit: Warner Bros. Pictures)

The Coyote Vs. Acme Story, In A Nutshell

For those of you who want a quick refresher, I’m going to spin that story for you here real quick like. In November 2023, Coyote vs. Acme was first announced as scrapped over at Warner Bros. The movie looked to be heading for the same tax write off and deletion strategy that was employed with Batgirl and Scoob! Holiday Haunt, both of which were also close to completion. 

Flash forward a couple days later in the same month, and reports started to come out that Warner Bros. was entertaining offers to buy Coyote vs. Acme. Eventually reports started pouring out that the screenings that were held for companies like Amazon, Paramount, and Netflix went exceedingly well. A potential bidding war seemed to be shaping up, and even current DC Films CEO James Gunn supported the Looney Tunes movie‘s chances for success. 

That brings us to what most consider the third act turn. Early February 2024 allegedly saw talks to sell the John Cena/Will Forte starring picture stalling out; with people presuming that Warner Bros. Discovery would use this earnings call to deal the final blow. Except that final strike never came, as the project wasn’t even slyly alluded to in the company’s remarks, or in any Q&A queries. 

Wile E. Coyote about to plummet, while holding a sign and a boombox,

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Why Coyote Vs. Acme’s Lack Of A Clear Fate Frustrates Me

I’ve been looking forward to Coyote vs. Acme for some time now, and you’d probably get that same statement from any other Looney Tunes fan who’s been keeping tabs on the project. Originating from a satirical New Yorker story by author Ian Frazier, Warner Bros.’ 2010 announcement kicked off a development hell that eventually yielded results after almost two decades of work.

While Coyote vs. Acme was never guaranteed, the fact that it made it through production felt like patience rewarded, and hard work paying off. So naturally the rollercoaster that ensued from the “Rabbit Season/Duck Season” style fate of this movie has been increasingly frustrated; especially in the face of the studio releasing the widely panned Space Jam: A New Legacy in 2021. I think even that film’s villain, Don Cheadle‘s Al G. Rhythm, would be perplexed to take a look at what’s gone down. 

Spending all of this time waiting for a proper Looney Tunes movie, and witnessing two potential cancellations preventing it from happening, really grinds some gears. At this point, people just want to know whether or not we should hold out hope for making opening night plans at a theater near us, or if we should start updating the various sites, articles, and videos that track lost media, announcing yet another casualty. Being stuck in the limbo in-between is even more annoying as if the latter happens to be true, we all get to live through this particular heartbreak once again. 

Wile E Coyote stands in front of a rock formation with a flattered expression in Looney Tunes: Back In Action.

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Could Warner Bros Discovery’s Silence On Coyote Vs. Acme Be A Good Sign?

I want to end on an optimistic note about Coyote vs. Acme, but even then I’m afraid there’s a particular caveat that comes to mind. Without the mention of this very much completed and widely buzzed about movie, there’s a possibility that recent reports about Warner Bros. Discovery just wanting to move on from this situation altogether are evolving. 

For a studio that value storytelling as much as CEO David Zaslav claims it does, you’d think that leaving the tale of Coyote vs. Acme without an ending would be antithetical to how they operate. At the same time, and in this same earnings call, Zaslav mentioned how the last Harry Potter movie was made over a decade ago. So seeing as that sort of talk casually ignores the fact that there’s an incomplete raft of Fantastic Beasts movies in existence, that could be a hint towards a more negative outcome. 

After that first cancellation announcement hit the streets, Mr. Zaslav claimed “courage” led to the decision to shelve Coyote vs. Acme. If that’s the case, I would think that making a final announcement on the project’s fate would have been almost required during today’s Q4 2023 earnings call. Not to mention, I’d presume that the last thing anyone at Warner Bros Discovery wants to do is prolong the discussion around this project’s fate; especially when this information session repeatedly called out the lack of content in the wake of 2023’s twin strike actions. 

It all brings me back to the hypothesis that maybe Wile E. Coyote and the rest of the Looney Tunes gang could enjoy a new moment in the sun very soon. In the absence of confirmation in either scenario, and with that un-cancellation technically still in play, there’s room for hope. Do you see why this is so frustrating to follow?!

Unfortunately, we’re not any closer to sweet victory or somber closure when it comes to this portion of the Looney Tunes story. So if you’re as disappointed as I am, and you’re looking to voice your support for this potential blockbuster, take advantage of this opportunity to let the world know. Here’s hoping there’s a chance that we can save Coyote vs. Acme after all, with a triumph that will ring out far and wide with one simple but powerful phrase: “Meep meep.” 

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