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Mattel is bringing Bob the Builder to the big screen


LOS ANGELES — Renowned toy company, Mattel, is embarking on its latest toy-inspired film project, Bob the Builder, the brand’s first animated theatrical movie.

The movie stars In the Heights actor Anthony Ramos as the voice of Roberto, “Bob,” who travels to Puerto Rico for a major construction job. There, he tackles various issues around the island and learns the true meaning of building as he experiences Caribbean-Latin culture.

Mattel has tapped Colombian-American writer Felipe Vargas to develop the story in collaboration with Alex Bulkley and Corey Campodonico of the animation studio ShadowMachine.

Bob the Builder is the latest in a number of film and television projects Mattel announced following the success of the Warner Bros. Barbie movie, which had box office sales that earned over $1.4 billion.

Other upcoming projects include the Netflix animated series Masters of the Universe: Revolution, centered on Mattel’s He-Man franchise, and a live-action Polly Pocket film, directed by Girls creator Lena Dunham and based on the tiny 1980s dolls by Mattel.

Mattel Films is also developing projects based on other popular toy lines, including American Girl, Hot Wheels, Magic Ball, Barney and more.

The Bob the Builder movie is based on the early 2000s British animated children’s series of the same name created by PAW Patrol writer Keith Chapman for Hit Entertainment and Hot Animation. The television show, centered on the namesake contractor and his friends, ran for 12 seasons.

Mattel purchased Hit, which owned the rights to Bob the Builder, Thomas & Friends and other preschool properties, in 2011 for $680 million.

Robbie Brenner, president of Mattel Films, said in a statement she hoped the project would introduce the character to new audiences. — Reuters

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