Gameloft announced today that they had obtained the rights to develop, distribute and publish Earthworm Jim for "mobile, WiiWare(TM), PlayStation Network, with an exclusive one month run on Xbox Live(R) Arcade."
Initially released in 1994, Earthworm Jim's games garnered such a cult following that the character's popularity took him far beyond video games into an animated TV series, Toys and Comic books. Earthworm Jim centers around an ordinary earthworm who engages in normal worm activities- eating dirt, crawling and fleeing from hungry birds- that is until he comes across a high tech indestructible space suit. Jim takes refuge in the space suit while fleeing from hungry birds. The suit's powerful atomic particles cause him to grow and obtain newfound powers.
Earthworm Jim was even awarded the "Best Genesis Game" of 1994 by the Electronic Gaming Monthly magazine. The ridiculous premise of a ordinary worm piloting a super advanced cyber suit combined with a cast of characters such as Professor Monkey-For-A-Head, Bob the Killer Goldfish, and Princess What's-Her-Name made for a game universe that perfectly catered to silly gameplay elements such as attacking by having the suit whip Earthworm Jim himself and riding a aptly named "pocket rocket" through asteroid fields.
Here's a video from the Sega CD version:
While an iPhone version has not been announced specifically, given Gameloft's massive iPhone efforts, it seems likely that we'll see this coming to the iPhone and iPod touch eventually.