THQ moving into Monster House

Game publisher to bring Sony Pictures' summer 2006 CG frightfest to consoles and handhelds.

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Never one to be scared off by family-friendly licenses, THQ today announced that it is developing games based on Columbia Pictures' upcoming computer-animated comic adventure Monster House.

THQ will be making games for consoles and "select handheld gaming systems" for release around the time of the film's July 21, 2006 release date. The games will let players control three characters in levels pulled directly from the film, as well as in some new situations inspired by the movie.

In the film, a trio of children discover that a spooky old house in their neighborhood is actually alive, evil, and hungry for people, particularly kids out trick-or-treating on Halloween. Created using the same "performance-capture animation" that provided The Polar Express with its distinctive look, Monster House features a cast including Steve Buscemi (Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead, Ghost World), Nick Cannon (Roll Bounce, Underclassman), Maggie Gyllenhaal (Cecil B. Demented, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind), Kevin James (Hitch, King of Queens), Jason Lee (Mallrats, My Name is Earl), Catherine O'Hara (Beetlejuice, Best in Show), Kathleen Turner (Serial Mom, GoBots: War of the Rock Lords), and Fred Willard (Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Best in Show).

Monster House is helmed by first-time director Gil Kenan (who also wrote the script, as well as the script for 2007's Pac Man). Steven Spielberg and Robert Zemeckis are executive-producing the film.

THQ has plenty of experience adapting family-friendly fare to games, having developed games based on Disney and Pixar productions like The Incredibles and Monsters Inc., as well as numerous Nickelodeon shows like SpongeBob SquarePants and Fairly Odd Parents.

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