After the massive success of The LEGO Movie in 2014, it seemed as if Warner Bros. was happy to go all-in on as many LEGO-related properties that they could get their hands on. But after the disappointing box office results for The LEGO Batman Movie and The LEGO Ninjago Movie, the studio might be rethinking their strategy.
Warner Bros. was working a spinoff, The Billion Brick Race, with Jason Segel (The Muppets) and Drew Pearce (Iron Man 3) teaming up to write and co-direct the film a number of years ago. However, a couple of years later, the studio handed the film over to Jorge R. Gutierrez (The Book Of Life), and we didn’t hear much for a while.
Until now, where a Facebook post from Gutierrez reveals that he is no longer attached to the project:
“I would like to publicly and from the bottom of my heart thank everyone I worked with at Briksburg, LEGO and WAG. These last 9 months were a rollercoaster of thrills to say the least. I met so many amazing new people and learned a ton from all these incredible artists, directors, writers, editors, producers and execs. I leave a better filmmaker and it’s because of you all”.
Interestingly, Warner Bros. hasn’t handed the project over to anyone else, which suggests they might be pumping the breaks on the spinoff for now, in the wake of the disappointing results of the other LEGO spinoffs.
The LEGO Movie 2 is still set for next year, but perhaps the studio has realised that something like Ninjago is too niche for general audiences, along with the fact that that film was released just eight months after The LEGO Batman Movie, so LEGO-related fatigue might also be a factor.
So it’ll be worth keeping an eye on The Billion Brick Race to see if the film is still going ahead at all. If The LEGO Movie 2 is a hit next year, there’s no doubt every possible spinoff will be back on the table, so the audience turnout for that film will likely determine the fate of many other LEGO-related properties.