Earlier this year Gnomeo and Juliet showed us the softer side of those porcelain figures that some people put in their yards. But others believe that the inner lives of garden gnomes are filled with jealousy, hatred, spite, and plain meanness. Chuck Sambuchino has penned the novel “How to Survive a Garden Gnome Attack,” which Sony Pictures Animation has optioned with Robert Zemeckis and his Imagemovers animation company set to produce, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Robert Zemeckis has been seen on the outs as his Yellow Submarine project got cancelled by Disney, and his use of motion-capture cinema never caught on. But as a Oscar-winner, and as a constant box office performer, he’s only one film away from being back on top. It will be interesting to see if Zemeckis pursues this as a motion capture film, or if he feels that the experiment is over.

There were rumors this might be R-rated, but that is not the case. How family friendly it is has yet to be decided, but animated movies generally cost too much to go for an R. The premise makes it sound like it could either be about a full blown gnome invasion, or about someone who thinks there might be a gnome invasion. I would suspect the latter, so it builds to chaos. But that would make it a variant on Gremlins. It worked before….

Is 2011 the year of the garden gnome?