The grandson of the first monkey in space leads his own mission and the grandson of a wacky scientist experiments with better living through chemistry as two CG-animated features make their home-video debuts this week. Space Chimps from Vanguard Animation and Starz Media comes to DVD and Blu-ray today, along with The Nutty Professor from The Weinstein Co. and Genius Products.
Produced by John H. Williams (Shrek, Shrek 2) and Barry Sonnenfeld (Men in Black, The Addams Family), Space Chimps features the voices of Andy Samberg (Saturday Night live), Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Patrick Warburton (Family Guy), Kristin Chenoweth (Pushing Daisies) and Stanley Tucci (ER). The adventure-comedy follows the exploits of a mischievous circus chimp named Ham (Samberg), who happens to be the grandson of the first primate ever sent into orbit. As a publicity stunt, Ham is chosen to lead a mission into space to explore a mysterious new planet. When he and his crew crash land on the bizarre world and find their lives in peril, Ham must prove that he really does have the right stuff.
The film marks the directorial debut of writer Kirk DeMicco, whose screenwriting credits include the 1998 Warner Bros. animated feature Quest for Camelot and the upcoming DreamWorks Animation production Crood Awakening. Space Chimps is also the first animated feature for Sonnenfeld, who produced Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events and directed such live-action hits Get Shorty, Men in Black and Men in Black II.
Bonus features include a casting session presented by Fox Movie Channel, various TV spots, a still gallery and trailers. The release carries a suggested retail price of $23.98 on DVD and $31.99 on Blu-ray.
The classic Jerry Lewis comedy The Nutty Professor is animated for a new generation with Lewis reprising the role of Julius Kelp. This time, it’s his grandson, Harold Kelp (Drake Bell) who gets hold of the experimental elixer that gives him the cool, confident personality he’s always wanted, along with an unwelcomed air of conceited arrogance.
The movie is directed by Paul Taylor, who helmed the Blur shorts In the Rough and Aunt Luisa before taking on his first feature. The script was written by Evan Spiliotopoulos (Pooh’s Heffalump Movie, Mickey, Donald, Goofy: The Three Musketeers), and Rainmaker Ent. handled the animation.
The DVD lists for $19.97. Bonus features include ‘The Science of Animating The Nutty Professor‘ and a character storyboard gallery. The movie has been rated ‘G’ by the MPAA.