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Sidekicks Take the Spotlight

Studios rely on legacy brands to guarantee box office—e.g., this month's Mr. Peabody & Sherman, based on the "Peabody's Improbable History" segments from the original Rocky and Bullwinkle Show. Which other supporting characters might be ready to lead?

[Illustration by David Cowles]

Commissioner Gordon
"He's an honest, incorruptible man in a sea of corruption. In essence, he's the mere mortal version of Batman himself. Only someone really headstrong could stand such a solitary and lonely existence."
Christian Alzmann, VFX artdirector, Industrial Light & Magic

Wyle E. Coyote

"Even if the Roadrunner was the hero, the Coyote was the main character. Certainly a persistent, inventive loser like the Coyote must have a story
to be told."
Adam Valdez, VFX supervisor and animation director, Moving Picture Company

Lois Lane

"She's a prizewinning journalist who fights for truth and justice in her own right. With the female audience still underserved, a film featuring a woman who can keep even Superman in check feels very 'now's the time.' "
Conrad Montgomery, director, current series, Cartoon Network

A version of this article appeared in the March 2014 issue of Fast Company magazine.

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