Tuesday, June 26, 2012

"Carmen Sandiego" Heading To The Big Screen

Vintage PC Edutainment game fans (that surely must exist, yes?); you may finally be getting a Hollywood blockbuster to call your own: Walden Media (the folks behind the "Narnia" movies) has comissioned a screenplay for a feature film adaptation of "Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego?"

Jennifer Lopez is one of the project's producers, and has been developing it as a potential star-vehicle for herself - the title character is a master-thief of (presumably) Latin/Spanish descent who prefers to pilfer items of historical/geographic significance. In the games, players took on the role of Interpol experts who had to use their knowledge of geography to suss out clues and chase Carmen and her associates around the world.

Outside of "The Oregon Trail," WITWICS? is probably the most successful/well-known franchise in the "edutainment" genre; and in it's heyday inspired tie-in books, school materials, museum/zoo events, merchandise and even an animated Fox TV series - however, it's probably best remembered by Gen-Xers for the uniquely-bizzare kiddie game show that aired on PBS...


Jak said...

I shouldn't expect it, but part of me will be disappointed if she doesn't make off with an entire landmark.

Anonymous said...

What the...? What happened to the Washington monument!? I left it right here!

gavstern said...

Maybe it will be like "Where The F**k Is Carmen San Diego?"


Sabre said...

"Edutainment"? I've never heard that term before. It's pretty bad as most "educational" games aren't entertaining.

As for me, maybe it's because I'm British, but my only memory of these games was a pretty bland PS2 stealth game where you hit robots with a blowpipe.

So I have zero interest in such a film. Even so, game to film stuff tends to be bad. I also guess there will be a tie in game too, which I doubt would be any good either. So what's the appeal?

hazlenaut said...

I love hearing all her intros from the cartoon, time and game show. I hoped that when meet new alien life that there will be Where in the Universe is Carman Sandiago. I think she will steal Jupiter’s giant hurricane.

Anubis C. Soundwave said...

@ Sabre: Carmen Sandiego (for kids in the US, at least) was one of the few exceptions. You've likely never played her games during the 1980s; it was a simple text adventure game where you tracked down clues and learned geography while trying to "catch" Carmen and be an Ace Detective.

This game, Oregon Trail, and Number Munchers were it for me during my childhood.

Also, this: Where on Earth is Carmen Sandiego.

"Edutainment" is a goofy portmanteau of "educational" and "entertainment", usually used as a pejorative because the games are heavy on the "education" and light on the "entertainment".

@ Jak: My landmark choice is the Eiffel Tower; it's one of France's major icons, and it would make a great opening title crawl heist that would hook viewers into the film. The special effects shouldn't be that hard to pull off.

Sabre said...


I have vague memories of a few educational games and programs. Most were not well known. The only one that would come close would be Encarta.

Oregon Trail I have heard of, but the stories I've heard of from Americans I know, it tend to be along the lines of "I want to discover the old west with my friends!" and they all die of dysentery. Oddly, the UK equivalent would be UFO/Xcom where people would want to save the earth with their friends as soldiers, and watch them all die horribly in the first mission or 2.

Misterprickly said...

It will only work if they reunite Rockapella to remix the closing song.

Anonymous said...

I think I'd personally pick Michelle Rodriguez to play Carmen Sandiego, but as long as they don't cast a non-latina actress and try to pass her off as latina, I'm fine either way.

maninahat said...


They can't hire Rodriguez as Carmen - she's contractually obligated to die two thirds the way through every movie she's in. They'd much rather "tan up" a white woman.

I'm old enough to remember both the cartoon, and one of the lousy games. Even then, I wondered why no one would just shoot her in her smug face.