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Category: Films

Story Headline News

My Dog Tulip Barks Up Acting Trio

Christopher Plummer, Lynn Redgrave and Isabella Rossellini will provide voices for the independent animated feature, MY DOG TULIP, based on J.R. Ackerleys 1956 British novel, reports VARIETY.

Brian Murray, Paul Hecht, Peter Gerety and Euan Morton fill out the rest of the voice cast. The story follows a 14-year friendship between Ackerley and his German Shepherd, Tulip, after the scribe rescued the dog.

Headline News

Sealed By A Kiss Sneaks into L.A. Theaters

L.A.-based Indican Pictures quietly released the 2D animated feature, ROMEO AND JULIET: SEALED BY A KISS in L.A. theaters over the past weekend.

Produced by Phil Nibbelink Prods., the story retells the Shakespeare play casting seals as the star-crossed lovers. When Juliet's father gives her hand in marriage to the monstrous elephant seal named Prince, Juliet, with the help of friends Friar Lawrence and Kissy the kissing fish, must fake her death in order to be reunited with Romeo. Phil Nibbelink (AN AMERICAN TAIL: FIEVEL GOES WEST) wrote and directed the film.

Headline News

Talladega Nights Still in First

The Will Ferrell NASCAR comedy, TALLADEGA NIGHTS: THE BALLAD OF RICKY BOBBY, kept its box office lead for the weekend ended Aug. 13, 2006. The Sony release (with vfx from Digital Dimension) scored $22.1M with a two-week cume of $90.3M. Debuting in second and third were Buena Vistas STEP UP, with $20.6M, and Paramounts WORLD TRADE CENTER (with vfx from Double Negative and Animal Logic) with $18.7M for a five-day cume of $26.5M.

Headline News

Imaginary Forces Creates Super-Heroic Open & Close for Zoom

Comic lovers are in for a visual treat when they watch the first few minutes of ZOOM. Created by Imaginary Forces (IF), the prologue pays tribute to vintage comic books of the 1970s with illustrations that come to life. The design was led by IF creative director Karin Fong.

Media Headline News

Mark Dindal Moves to Live-Action with Sherlock's Secretary

Mark Dindal (CHICKEN LITTLE) will make his live-action directorial debut on SHERLOCK'S SECRETARY for Walden Media and Nash Ent., according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER.

Crafted around the fact that Sherlock Holmes fictitious address 221b Baker St. receives real letters seeking Holmes sleuthing skills, the story will follow a resident of the address who decides to take on the real case from one of the letters.

Animation Headline News

Finished The Toll Premieres at Rhode Island Film Festival

After two previous screenings, the final cut of THE TOLL will make its world premiere at Rhode Island Film Festival (RIFF) on Friday, Aug. 11, 2006. This completed version of the 3D mockumentary by Portsmouth New Hampshires, Hatchling Studios, has been rendered in High Definition while the film will still screened in standard definition.

Digital Headline News

Digital Dimension in Pole Position with Talladega Nights VFX

Digital Dimension continues to help set the pace for seamlessly believable Hollywood visual effects as the lead visual effects studio on the new NASCAR-themed movie TALLADEGA NIGHTS: THE BALLAD OF RICKY BOBBY. Following on such collaborations as ZATHURA: A SPACE ADVENTURE and BLADE: TRINITY, visual effects supervisor Joe Conmy entrusted the award-winning company with the movies three large NASCAR race sequences, as well as other select scenes, for a total of 267 shots.

Headline News

Halo Finds a Director

Acclaimed commercial and shorts director Neill Blomkamp will make his feature debut with HALO, to be produced by Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh under their WingNut Films banner for Universal Pictures (domestically) and Twentieth Century Fox (internationally). Visual effects, miniatures and creature design and creation will all be handled by Weta Digital Ltd. and Weta Workshop Ltd.

Media Headline News

Fox and Walden Media Announce Joint Venture

Fox Filmed Ent. and Walden Media have joined forces with the mandate of marketing and releasing family films.

Walden Media, whose recent success includes the worldwide blockbuster THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA, is bringing its future feature development slate to the joint venture. Fox will also contribute a number of current and newly developed projects. Walden Media's previously announced films at other studios would remain in place.

Animation Headline News

Uli Meyer Animation’s MonsterMania! Goes Into Production

Uli Meyer Animation has started production on MONSTERMANIA!, a fully computer-animated feature film comedy featuring the classic movie monsters.

Scripted by award-winning British horror writers Michael Marshall Smith and Stephen Jones, based on an idea by Uli Meyer, Stephen Jones and Michael Marshall Smith, MONSTERMANIA! has been in active development for the past three years at the companys London-based animation studios.

Film Headline News

Romero Travels to Solitary Isle

Co-financing partners, Hyde Park Ent. and Kadokawa Pictures, have hired George A. Romero to write and direct the thriller SOLITARY ISLE, according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER.

Based on a short story by Koji Suzuki (THE RING, DARK WATER), the $20 million-budgeted film will follow an expedition to a deserted island, which turns deadly as the explorers face an unknown force.

The film most likely will be distributed by 20th Century Fox, where Hyde Park has a five-year, first-look deal. Hyde Park Intl holds the foreign rights.

Comedy Headline News

Talladega Nights Races First

The Will Ferrell NASCAR comedy, TALLADEGA NIGHTS: THE BALLAD OF RICKY BOBBY, raced to the top of the box office chart in its first outing. For the weekend ended Aug. 6, 2006, the Sony release scored a whopping $47Mthe best comedy opener of the year and a personal best for Ferrell. Debuting in second place with $15.8M was the 3D-animated BARNYARD from Paramount Pictures, Nickelodeon Movies and director Steve Oedekerks O Ent.

Film Headline News

Hellboy 2 Finds Home at Universal

Universal Pictures is set to fully finance and distribute HELLBOY 2, Guillermo del Toros sequel to his 2004 film, which was produced by Revolution Studios and distributed through its deal at Columbia Pictures, reports VARIETY. Universal plans to release the film based on the Dark Horse comic in summer 2008.

Del Toro has penned the script and Ron Perlman and Selma Blair will return as Hellboy and his pyrokinetic love interest, Liz Sherman, respectively.

Film Headline News

Pate Director Finds After.Life

Agnieszka Vosloo has been tapped by new production company Constellation Ent. to write and direct AFTER.LIFE, according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER.

The story follows a young woman in limbo between life and death who fights to avoid being buried alive by the funeral director who holds her fate in his hands.

The supernatural thriller will be co-produced and co-financed by the Collective. Production is scheduled to begin in the winter.

Headline News

Die Hard 4 Coming in 2007

20th Century Fox has announced that the next installment in the DIE HARD action franchise will hit theaters next summer on June 29, taking on TRANSFORMERS for the Independence Day weekend, reports the trades.

Bruce Willis will again play tough-talking, New York cop John McClane in LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD, which plans to start shooting next month. Len Wiseman (UNDERWORLD) has been hired to helm the film from a screenplay by Mark Bomback.

David Headline News

New Villain & Composer Confirmed for Potter 5

Warner Bros. Pictures has confirmed that Helena Bonham Carter has joined the all-star cast of HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX. Bonham Carter will play Bellatrix Lestrange, Sirius Black's cousin and a Death Eater, who is one of Lord Voldemort's followers.

Effects Headline News

Vue Helps ILM Create Environments for Dead Man's Chest

e-on software announced that Industrial Light & Magic used Vue for the production of visual effects of Walt Disney's PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MAN'S CHEST. ILM produced more than 60 shots of the Cannibal Island set using Vue 5 Infinite and xStream to model, texture, animate, light and render the different parts of the natural environment.

"We started playing around with Vue and it rapidly became our primary tool for big, exotic 3D environments," said John Knoll, visual effects supervisor at ILM.

Headline News

The Dark Knight Returns with New Joker

As a follow up to last year's blockbuster BATMAN BEGINS, Christopher Nolan is set to direct Warner Bros. Pictures' THE DARK KNIGHT, written by Jonathan Nolan, based on a story by Christopher Nolan and David Goyer. In addition to Christian Bale returning as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Warner Bros. has announced that Heath Ledger (BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN) has been cast as The Joker. The film will be produced by Emma Thomas, Charles Roven and Christopher Nolan.

Animation Headline News

Sony Pictures Animation Books Rooms In Hotel Transylvania

Sony Pictures Animation has announced that HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA will be the companys third animated project, following Sony Pictures Animation, OPEN SEASON, on Sept. 29, 2006, and SURFS UP!, on June 8, 2007. All three films will be released by Columbia Pictures.

Headline News

Sea-Monkeys Swimming to Theaters

Empire Pictures has signed an agreement with Transcience Corp. to develop an animated film and possible franchise from the infamous children's toy line, THE AMAZING LIVE SEA-MONKEYS, reports VARIETY. As part of the deal, Empire obtained entertainment rights to the line, which has been sold in more than 50 countries over the past 45 years.

Film Headline News

Kidman Find Evil Side with Golden Compass

Nicole Kidman has signed on to play the villainous and glamorous Mrs. Coulter in New Line's adaptation of Phillip Pullman's HIS DARK MATERIALS: THE GOLDEN COMPASS, reports VARIETY. The $150-million budgeted film is scheduled to start lensing in September at London's Shepperton Studios.

Chris Weitz will direct from his own script. British actress Dakota Blue Richards will make her major screen debut in the lead role of Lyra Belacqua, who must travel to a parallel universe to save her best friend from the forces of evil.

Headline News

WB Wolfs Out with Benighted

Warner Bros. and Graham King's Initial Ent. Group have snatched the rights to Kit Whitfields werewolf novel BENIGHTED, according to VARIETY. King is set to produce with NARNIA helmer Andrew Adamson, whose eyeing the project as a directing job.

Originally published in the U.K. as BAREBACK, BENIGHTED is an alternate reality story where 90% of the population is werewolf and the other 10% must keep the peace during the full moon. Random House, which published in the U.K., is set to publish the book in the U.S. as well.

Headline News

Miami Vice Displaces Pirates for Top Box Office Spot

Universal's MIAMI VICE (vfx by EntityFX, Illusion Arts and Eden FX) made off with a cool $25.7M to take top spot at the box office for its debut, bumping Disneys PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MANS CHEST (with vfx support from ILM) to second place, taking in $20.6 M for a treasure chest total now of $358.5M. Following in third was Fox's JOHN TUCKER MUST DIE) opening with $14.3M. Dropping slightly to forth place was all-CG MONSTER HOUSE scare fest from Sony and Sony Pictures Imageworks, taking in $11.6M for a two-week cume of $44M. All this competition pushed Warner Bros.

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