This day in age, it seems that anything that is merely successful is given the merchandising treatment. Whether it be a movie, television show, toy, or even smartphone game, the appreciative consumer mass is avalanched in books, shirts, mugs, movies, posters, shows, and just about whatever else on which an image can be woven or printed. In the midst of storm, standing proudly, is Bill Watterson, the creator of the beloved comic "Calvin and Hobbes", who has never allowed his works to be merchandised. Besides a couple calendars and a rare educational book, there are no official products depicting the adventurous boy or his wise/sarcastic/supportive tiger friend. Perhaps the most famous image of Calvin, mischievously urinating on [any word or logo here], is an unofficial product.
In a recent interview with Mental Floss, the reclusive Watterson was asked if he would ever consider "Calvin and Hobbes" for a television or big screen adaptation. He responded with the following:
The visual sophistication of Pixar blows me away, but I have zero interest in animating Calvin and Hobbes. If you’ve ever compared a film to a novel it’s based on, you know the novel gets bludgeoned. It’s inevitable, because different media have different strengths and needs, and when you make a movie, the movie’s needs get served. As a comic strip, Calvin and Hobbes works exactly the way I intended it to. There’s no upside for me in adapting it.
While it might be bad news for all of us wanting to see Calvin and his tiger buddy on the screen, we have to commend Watterson for holding onto his artistic values. In a 2005 press release, Watterson stated that he "wasn't against all merchandising when I started the strip, but each product I considered seemed to violate the spirit of the strip, contradict its message, and take me away from the work I loved."
Following Watterson's words, we can enjoy these characters in comic book form, the way they were intended. Perhaps not everything needs to be a movie (or two, or three).