There is a film coming your way next year conceived in the mind of a four-year-old boy. This is not a joke (or, indeed, the tag line). Former studio president Adam Goodman (the key word here being 'former') let his son come up with an idea for a film, and Monster Trucks was born. The premise revolves around monster trucks containing actual monsters. And that's it.
I am pretty sure said toddler wasn't involved in the finance planning, given Monster Trucks cost a mere $100 million to make and Paramount are only predicted to earn $25 million when it opens in 2017 - which in my understanding of basic math, equals a huge studio loss.
Starring Lucas Till (apparently plays Havok in the X-Men series), Jane Levy (Tessa in Suburgatory) and, cough, Rob Lowe (not been in a watchable film since Thank You For Smoking back in 2005, and that really wasn't a big part), Monster Trucks is aimed for kids, created by a kid.
What's the story, you yell? Basically, monsters inhabit trucks, they go really fast and, this last bit is a guess, a nefarious individual tries to capture/steal them.
Which got me thinking - could I go one better and get a child to invent a summer blockbuster, containing the right balance of action, pathos and hilarity guaranteed to pull in the punters and not lose money?
So I employed my son's five-year-old sister, Emmy, for immediate consultation, and I think we have it - a taut, probably-animated tale of unlikely friendships, bravery and one big hero. Given as all the credit should go to the vivid, uncluttered and all-too-innocent mind of a small girl, I will paraphrase the plotline below, adding only a few unreasonable sarcastic comments in the guise of the chief editor.
"A family of mermaids with sparkly tails live under the sea (surely in, ed?) in a house made of chocolate sea horses.
"The mermaids (big up for the lack of male protagonists clogging up the premise - wait, are the entire family female, ed?) are out searching for strawberries to wash and eat when a giant seahorse (perhaps angry at their chocolate brethren being used as housing fodder, ed?) starts hunting them for food.
"Luckily, the family of mermaids make friends with a big fish who frightens the giant seahorse away."
And that, as she rightly concluded, is enough.
I believe this is enough for a lift-pitch (if you cannot explain your film idea in 15 seconds, then don't bother engaging an exec is lift talk), and, granted, some details need to be ironed out, but the raw bones are certainly in place - and I can just see/hear Ray Winstone as the big fish.
We shall await a call from Hollywood (while eating chocolate seahorses).