Mystery Inc. is Back With DAPHNE AND VELMA
Scooby Doo is the perfect intellectual property for parody. The beloved Hannah Barbara cartoon premiered in 1969 and introduced the world to Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy, and of course, the incorrigible pupper: Scooby Doo. But behind the kaleidoscope of kid-friendly colors as our sleuths investigated supernatural capers, patchouli-scented audiences began to pick up on some not so subtle subtext. Why were Fred and Daphne always scampering off to investigate privately? Why ARE Shaggy and Scooby so gosh dang munchie all the time? And with each episode, each faint gag, the back story for each of these characters grew deeper and more fun as we filled in the personality blanks. Maybe there WAS a secret ingredient in the Scooby snacks. What’s Velma’s deal? Are ascots sexy? And as Scooby Doo grew up, so did its fans; and by 2002, with a script from James Gunn (Slither, Guardians of the Galaxy), we finally got to see Mystery Inc. in live action with its tongue planted firmly in its cheek. And as the years went on we would continue to see more pokes and prods at the “Scooby” property, most notably in Spencer Parson’s 2012 horror film Saturday Morning Mystery (replacing the DOPE title “Saturday Morning Massacre”).
But with the popularity of The CW’s Riverdale reviving the Archie gang, we now have yet another revival of Scooby Doo but with a twist that is PUMPING US UP!
Daphne and Velma, a live-action feature focusing on the female duo of Mystery Inc. is coming to us from Warner Bros. Television Group’s digital studio, Blue Ribbon Content. Directed by newcomers Suzi Yoonessi from a script by Kyle Mack and Caitlin Meares, the film has already cast its two leads in Sarah Jeffrey (Wayward Pines) as Daphne and Sarah Gilman (Last Man Standing) as Velma. The logline reads:
“Before their eventual team-up with Scooby and the gang, bright and optimistic Daphne and whip-smart and analytical Velma are both mystery-solving teens who are best friends but have only met online — until now. Daphne has just transferred to Velma’s school, Ridge Valley High, a tech-savvy institute with all the latest gadgets provided by the school’s benefactor, tech billionaire Tobias Bloom. And while competition is fierce among the students for a coveted internship at Bloom Innovative, Daphne and Velma dig beyond all the gadgets and tech to investigate what is causing some of the brightest students in school to disappear — only to emerge again in a zombie-fied state.”
“Blondie Girl is committed to telling stories from a female perspective, and we could not be more thrilled to give Daphne and Velma their own story,” said the Tisdale sisters, who are producers and founders of Blondie Girl, the production company behind the film. “We wanted to give the audience a new take on these two familiar faces, who are fan favorites in the Scooby-Doo universe. Daphne and Velma are two iconic and strong female characters, and this latest adventure of theirs will be both inspiring and entertaining for the audience.” said Peter Girardi, EVP of Blue Ribbon Content.
In an industry that has a severe lack of representation for women (and really anyone that is not straight, white, and male) it is an early holiday gift to hear that something as beloved as Scooby Doo and its cast of characters are getting the attention and respect they deserve.