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In an article that was published yesterday in The Wall Street Journal about the newest Hollywood fad to make movies based on children's toy lines like Transformers, Barbie and Masters of the Universe, a new toyfilm project and who is attached to produce it was mentioned for the first time. It hardly takes up any room in the piece but right there in the middle of the copy the Journal states that Star Trek director J.J. Abrams is in talks right now to make a film based on Micronauts, the sci-fi action figure toy line that was popular in the late 1970s with kids.
Micronauts was designed by the Japanese toy manufacturer Takara and released in the land of the eastern sun in 1974 as Microman. The Mego Corporation brought the line to North American audiences in 1976 and rebranded it Micronauts. The 3-3/4-inch figures had imaginative names like Acroyear, Baron Karza and Time Traveler, and while there wasn't any back story to the characters or reasons why they existed, that didn't stop Marvel Comics from releasing a Micronauts comic book series in 1979. Even though Mego ceased carrying the figures a year later Marvel's Micronauts series continued on until 1984. New characters were introduced in the comic that never had their corresponding action figure. In 2003 Devil's Due Publishing did a new Micronauts series which lasted for 12 issues.
"Sometimes, when someone is not a celebrity and you are casting them in a role, everyone who is in a seat of authority voices questions about that actor's talent, sex appeal, looks, ability -- their everything," Abrams told the newspaper about the reasons why he was attracted to make a movie based on a toy line. "But then they get the role, and suddenly they are on the cover of every magazine, and nobody questions those things again. In retrospect, everyone says, 'Of course that person is a star.'" Can the man that reimagined Paramount's Star Trek and resurrected it as a billion dollar franchise do it for Micronauts?