It's been nearly two years since we first learned that the long-rumored "Captain Planet and the Planeteers" movie was actually being thrown into development. At the time, Ted Turner's Cartoon Network announced a partnership with producer Don Murphy to take the early-90s animated environmental series and adapt it for the silver screen. Murphy, along with his partner Susan Montford, are the same team that successfully took the "Transformers" franchise from cartoon to live-action blockbuster.

“We are extremely excited about bringing the good Captain back to life,” Murphy said in a July 2011 release. “His adventures are known worldwide and he is recognized across generations. We expect to make a spectacular series of films with the amazing team at Cartoon Network.”

“With the earthquakes, tornadoes, melting icebergs and all the other problems threatening the world right now, Earth really needs her greatest defender,” said partner Susan Montford.

And then - silence. One can only assume that work was started on a treatment that, as of yesterday, was finally polished enough to catch the eye of Sony Pictures. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the studio is in final negotiations to bring the blue-skinned superhero and his five planeteers (wielding magical rings that control fire, wind, water, earth, and of course, heart) to theaters.

Related on MNN: Captain Planet returns to destroy humanity (Video)

In addition to the feature-length "Captain Planet" animated film that was scrapped in 1997, THR reveals the interesting fact that both Murphy and Montford developed a live-action series with Cartoon Network in the late 2000s that also was dropped. It will be interesting to hear what, if anything, from that failed effort makes it into the film.

For anyone interested, you can watch MNN's exclusive behind-the-scenes video of treatments from the first failed "Captain Planet" film below.

"Captain Planet" is an animated series created by Ted Turner in the 1990s. is the primary source for "Captain Planet" episodes on the Web.
Captain Planet is a superhero whose powers are implemented by a team of five Planeteers (as well as himself), each of whom helps combat environmental catastrophes like pollution, animal poaching, water scarcity and more. Each episode of "Captain Planet" involves the captain and his planeteers tackling different dilemmas and nefarious eco-villains.
Numerous celebrities contributed voice work to the show, including Meg Ryan, Jeff Goldblum, Whoopi Goldberg and many others. You can watch all the Captain Planet episodes on MNN and you can learn more about the series by going behind the scenes with the creators and major players.

Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

Sony signs up for live-action 'Captain Planet' film
Studio is reportedly in final negotiations to pick up the movie rights for the adaptation.