Compared to most of its other animated content producer in the 1990s, Disney’s Gargoyles has always been an outlier. Between its subject matter and gritty aesthetic it makes sense as to why it never took off. Interestingly enough, despite the lack of popularity at the time, there were talks of adapting it into a live action film.
In a recent Polygon article, an investigation into the project not only reveals why the project died, but it also provides exclusive plot details, and even offers a firsthand look at never-before-seen concept art that proves that it could very well be the greatest film that Disney never made.
According to sources familiar with the project, as expected, the primary reason why the film was never made was because the studio didn’t believe there would be much interest. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t considered. As mentioned before, there is a script. It’s just that when Disney was trying to figure which of the company’s original IPs to adapt into film franchises, they opted for more family friendly ones. And even then you only have to look at how the first Pirates of the Caribbean film compared to Eddie Murphy’s The Haunted Mansion to understand that the result was still a mixed bag.
Revolving around a group of ancient warriors who become transformed into Gargoyles and sent to modern day NYC, the series ran for 3 seasons as a part of Disney’s animated afternoon block.
Conceptualized as a fantasy action film that was part Highlander and part Ghostbusters, it was obvious the film wouldn’t work for Disney’s ideal demographic.
Now, with the existence of Disney+ and the company’s need for original content there’s an argument to be had that this would be the best time to see these characters and this story return. However, until that happens we’ll just have to hang on to the cool photos below.