View-Master’s inventor William Gruber
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Toys: Movies ‘R’ Us

View-Master’s inventor William Gruber
By Jevon Phillips and Todd Martens, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers

As “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” racks up box office dollars, “G.I. Joe” prepares to hit screens this summer and DreamWorks is developing a movie based on the View-Master, we thought some other toys should make the leap from shelf to screen. We shoot for the stars with our casting and plotlines, but all’s fair in love and toys.

Pictured: View-Master’s inventor William Gruber. (Don Ryan / AP)
Rubik’s Cube
Potential film: Aliens invade the planet and are able to overwrite human dna using complex cubes that hold the ‘spark’ of life. Math whiz Donnie Glickman (‘Superbad’s’ Christopher Mintz-Plasse) and his ‘math posse’ escape capture and set about saving the world. (Jeffrey F. Bill / Baltimore Sun)
The In Crowd
Potential film: The cutesy collectibles from James Jarvis showcase metal kids and motorcyclists, among others, and Jarvis’ “Ages of Metal” series inspires this low-budget indie flick. Andrew Bujalski (“Mutual Appreciation”) takes a documentarian approach as a band of twenty-something nobodies fail to stay employed and discover the RAWK. (James Jarvis)
Furbys
Potential film: The “Gremlin”-like toys inspire a film with broader, more ecological concerns, reflecting our green-conscious times. Leonardo DiCaprio stars in this action-drama in which a new species is discovered ... on the verge of its extinction. (Associated Press)
Stretch Armstrong
Potential film: Owen Wilson stars as stunt guy Steve “Stretch” Armstrong, an arrogant guy who gets doused with an experimental rubber compound and must save the day when an evil studio exec -- Vac-Man -- goes rogue! ()
Furilla
Potential film: A delightfully bendy one-eyed sasquatch, the Furilla is one misunderstood monster (tagline!). The poor thing stumbles into a new suburban development and befriends a young Alex Etel (“Millions”). The dashing Furilla and its boy pal make haste back to the woods. Headlines of a missing child shock the budding town. Developers plot a cover-up, and investigators stumble onto something much bigger. ()
Homies
Potential film: These tiny figurines inspired a major controversy after their late ‘90s release, with critics claiming they glorified gang culture. In the film, Robert Rodriguez would return to his gritty “El Mariachi” roots to document two generations of a Chicano family. The gang claims would be largely unfounded, as young Jokachild (real toy) falls into a performance art group at a downtown L.A. loft party, and domestic tensions ensue. (Myung Chun / LAT)
Cabbage Patch Kids
Potential film: Kids forced to work in a cabbage patch until dead come back to haunt anyone who comes to the house next to the field. Paris Hilton and Nicole Ritchie stumble upon the house while driving around on “The Simple Life, season 6.” (Associated Press)
Fun Fountain
Potential film: In this depressed housing market, a young couple (Chris Pine and Jessica Alba) find the perfect house for a bargain price. The only quirk in the property is the bizarre clown head growing out of the backyard, but that doesn’t stop them from moving in. The couple soon learns the dark side of home-ownership when the neighborhood kids begin gathering for bizarre nighttime rituals around the head and a stranger appears on their doorstep, whispering, “Beware those who bathe in the clown” before dying. ()
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