The Smurfs

Release Date: July 29, 2011

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"Ooo, those goody-goody Smurfs make me sick!" -- Gargamel

Gargamel and his cat cohort in crime Azrael might not be completely alone in that emotion. Anyone who lived through the '80s would have found these ubiquitous little blue creatures impossible to avoid. Thanks to the magic of marketing tie-ins, they were literally everywhere. The show was good, wholesome entertainment for children, and for adults, the precursor to the Teletubbies in terms of annoyance level.

The classic Saturday morning cartoon series centered around numerous magical blue creatures known as Smurfs. Each Smurf is named for his or her personality, such as Brainy Smurf, Grouchy Smurf, Greedy Smurf and Jokey Smurf. The exception, of course, is Smurfette, who is the only female character given any significant attention in the majority of the show's episodes. The Smurfs all live in a village of mushroom houses that is located in an enchanted forest. A bossy little guy named Papa Smurf is their leader.

For the most part, the lifestyle of our little blue friends is carefree and blissful - with one big exception. Gargamel is an evil, bumbling wizard who lives in the forest with his nasty cat, Azrael. Most of the stories in the Smurfs' long run deal with their attempts to escape the iniquitous Gargamel, whose various plans for the little blue guys including eating them, making them his slaves, and stealing their magical secrets. From time to time, though, the Smurfs actually decided to help their enemy out when his plans went terribly awry or when he crossed paths with much more powerful wizards than he was.

The little blue dudes will now be the subject of a series of 3-D animated films. Sounds positively smurfy to us! (Kim Hollis/BOP)

Vital statistics for The Smurfs
Main Cast Alan Cumming, Anton Yelchin, George Lopez, Hank Azaria, Neil Patrick Harris, Paul Reubens, Sofia Vergara
Screenwriter Herb Ratner
Distributor Paramount
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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