"The WWII Movie" (possibly titled "Thomas the Tank Engine") is the fan-made term used to refer to a theatrical Thomas and Friends film. It has been given several release dates, but the latest statement from HiT Entertainment was that there is "no definitive confirmation on the project's status at this time".
The film will take place in London during World War II, and revolves around a pre-teen boy who has drifted apart from his father. The son is introduced into the world of Sodor, a place his father visited as a child but cannot remember. There is a bonding experience.
It is also confirmed that it will involve a steam engine versus Diesel engine confrontation.
- The movie was originally scheduled for a "late 2010" release, but was pushed back to Spring 2011, then to a 2012 release, and finally a 2014 release. However, according to an interview with UCLA Magazine, the movie would have been released in 2013.
- The film would have used a combination of live action (most likely humans) and CGI. Weta Digital was going to supply the CGI aspect of the film. The E2 portrayed in the teaser poster however was made by Nitrogen Studios.
- The film was going create its own line of toys aimed at an older audience.
- This film was to be the first in a potential series which would run alongside the television series.
- WETA Workshop and Mattel Entertainment Design Group, the creative team behind the movie, are "re-imagining the core characters and the world in a way that will appeal to a wide kids and family audience."
- It appeared that the movie would have been distributed by Cinetic Media and UTA's Independent Film Group in conjunction with HiT Entertainment.