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Category: Films

Headline News

Whedon Wanted for Wonder Woman

MATRIX producer Joel Silver confirmed that BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER creator Joss Whedon is being talked with to write and direct a new film version of WONDER WOMAN, reports SCI FI WIRE.

"I'm trying," Silver said in an interview at WonderCon in San Francisco on Feb. 19, 2005. "I'm trying to work a deal with Joss... I was just in the other room [where Whedon was talking about his upcoming SF movie, SERENITY]. I don't know if I could work that out. It's a complicated deal to do, but I would love him to do it. It would be great if he could do it."

Visual Headline News

DLP Cinema Projection Technology Supported The Aviator

Texas Instruments DLP Cinema technology, the digital cinema projection system deployed in movie theaters worldwide, played a supporting role during the production and post-production process for Martin Scorseses THE AVIATOR, which garnered 11 Oscar nominees.

Headline News

Videa Will Create VFX for Laughing Water Feature

Italian digital studio Videa VFX has signed on to do visual effects work on LAUGHING WATER, an Italian, British and Czech co-production based on the German novel, MINE HA HA, about the mysterious disappearance of girls at a school surrounded by a fairy tale atmosphere with dark forests and gloomy lakes.

VFXWORLD contributor Gianluca Dentici will serve as vfx supervisor, with John Irvin directing and Dante Ferretti doing the production design. Jacqueline Bisset co-stars as the headmistress.

Headline News

Hitch Holds Off Constantine Over President’s Day Weekend

HITCH, the Will Smith romantic comedy, seduced another $36.7M for Sony over the Presidents Day Weekend box office period ended Feb. 21, 2005. That gives it a two-week cume of $95M. Debuting in second with $33.6M was Warner Bros. CONSTANTINE, the supernatural thriller with Keanu Reeves, based on the HELLBLAZER graphic novel (with vfx by ESC Ent., Tippett Studio, Hydraulx and Spectrum Effects). Foxs warm-hearted BECAUSE OF WINN-DIXIE bowed in third with $13.2M.

Film Headline News

Revenge of the Sith to Kick Off Cannes

STAR WARS: EPISODE III REVENGE OF THE SITH will open the 58th Cannes Film Festival on May 11, reports Londons DAILY MAIL. The final STAR WARS film, which hits theaters on May 19, will kick off proceedings on the Croisette, joining a long tradition of high-profile launches.

Charlie Headline News

WB To Lens Midnight for Charlie Bone Adaptation

Warner Bros. has secured the screen rights to Welsh author Jenny Nimmos MIDNIGHT FOR CHARLIE BONE and the four additional books in the fantasy series, reports VARIETY. WB-based Thunder Roads Basil Iwanyk and Alysia Cotter will produce. Neil Alsip will adapt the books. WB execs Lynn Harris and Geoff Shaevitz will oversee the project for the studio.

Disney Headline News

Peter and the Starcatchers To Get CG Treatment

By Rick DeMott | Thursday, February 17, 2005 at 12:00am

Disney Animation has secured the rights to Dave Barry and Ridley Pearsons bestselling children's book PETER AND THE STARCATCHERS with the intent to turn it into a CGI feature, reports VARIETY.

The loose prequel to PETER PAN follows 8-year-old Peter, shipmate Molly and a group of orphaned boy on the ship Never Land as they attempt to recover a trunk of magical starstuff, before the pirate Black Stache gets him hands on it.

Disney Editions published the book in August 2004.

Headline News

I, Robot Director Knows Next Supernatural Thriller

By Rick DeMott | Thursday, February 17, 2005 at 12:00am

Columbia-based Escape Artists has hired I, ROBOT director Alex Proyas to helm the supernatural thriller, KNOWING, reports HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Originally DONNIE DARKO director Richard Kelly was attracted to direct and Proyas will film off Kellys rewrite of Ryne Pearsons original screenplay. Steve Tisch, Todd Black, Jason Blumenthal and David Alper are set to produce.

Headline News

Mummy Director Enters Magic Kingdom

Universal Pictures has secured the rights to Terry Brooks' book series MAGIC KINGDOM FOR SALE, reports HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. THE MUMMY director Stephen Sommers will direct and produce. Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel will adapt the screenplay. Sommers Universal-based Sommers Co. partner Bob will produce with Circle of Confusions David Alpert.

The first volume of the series follows a widowed attorney who leaves his old life behind when he responds to a mysterious ad and spends his fortune to purchase a magical kingdom.

Million Headline News

Sony Brings Hit Flicks to PSP

Sony Pictures will release XXX, HELLBOY, RESIDENT EVIL 2 and ONCE UPON A TIME IN MEXICO for the PSP on April 19, 2005, reports VARIETY. SPIDER-MAN 2 will be bundled with the first million PSP units. Pricing on the PSP flicks will be announced later next week. Sony Pictures Home Ent. plans to release four to five catalog films each week for the PSP. Since the launched of PSP in Japan in December, more than one million universal media disc (UMD) movies have been sold.

Film Headline News

International Casts Animated for Midsummer Dream

Lumina Films has hired regional stars to voice characters for each territory version of its CG feature, MIDSUMMER DREAM, reports HOLLYWOOD REPORTER.

For the U.K., Rhys Ifans, Toby Blessed and Brian Blessed have been signed on. For Spanish-speaking territories Gabino Diego, Jose Luis Gil, Emma Penella, Isabel Ordaz, Gemma Cuervo and Carmen Machi have been hired

Headline News

VCL Uses Furnace on Dhoom

The Foundrys Furnace proved to be an invaluable set of tools when Mumbai-based vfx studio VCL (Visual Computing Labs, a division Tata Elxsi) recently provided the 3D elements and compositing for the forthcoming Yash Raj feature, DHOOM. Led by VCLs creative director and vfx supervisor, Pankaj Khandpur, the team consisted of around eight compositors with the remainder working in 3D who, in less than eight weeks, completed 553 vfx shots, with Furnace being used on more than100 of them, for rig and wire removal.

Headline News

Sony Scores With a Hitch; Disney Offers a Heffalump

Sony held the first three spots on the box office chart for the Valentines Weekend ended Feb. 13, 2005, with the Will Smith-starrer, HITCH, breaking the record for romantic comedy bows with $43.1M. Screen Gems BOOGEYMAN followed with $10.2 and a two-week cume of $32.7M and Sonys ARE WE THERE YET? picked up $8.2M and $61.2M. Clint Eastwoods Oscar contender, MILLION DOLLAR BABY, moved up to fourth with some big mo, knocking down another $7.4M and $44.9M so far.

Headline News

No July 4 Face-Off Between War of the Worlds and Fantastic Four

20th Century Fox, which had been planning a Fourth of July-themed launch for FANTASTIC FOUR, has rescheduled the Marvel superhero actioner from July 1 to July 8, according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. That cedes the holiday weekend to Steven Spielbergs WAR OF THE WORLDS juggernaut, starring Tom Cruise, with vfx by Industrial Light & Magic, which opens June 29 for Paramount Pictures.

FANTASTIC FOUR, with vfx by Canadas Soho VFX and Spectral Motion, will now go up against Sony Pictures BEWITCHED, with Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell, and vfx by Imageworks.

Tale Headline News

McRobb and Viscardi to Script Animated Despereaux Feature

Will McRobb and Chris Viscardi (the ED TV series) have been brought on board to pen the feature adaptation of THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX for Universal Pictures, according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Sylvain Chomet (THE TRIPLETS OF BELLEVILLE) is directing, while Gary Ross is producing through his Larger Than Life Prods. with partner Allison Thomas.

The project is based on the book, THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX: BEING THE STORY OF A MOUSE, A PRINCESS, SOME SOUP, AND A SPOOL OF THREAD, by Kate DiCamillo (BECAUSE OF WINN-DIXIE). It won the 2004 Newbery Medal for children's literature.

Headline News

Boogeyman Latest Frightener to Lead Box Office

BOOGEYMAN is the latest scary movie to take the box office derby, this time for the weekend of Super Bowl XXXIX ended Feb. 6, 2005. The ScreenGems thriller slashed its way to $19M, killing Universals second place finisher, THE WEDDING DATE, which bowed with $11.1M. Sonys ARE WE THERE YET? followed in third place with $10.6M and $51.2M. Foxs HIDE AND SEEK, last weeks winner, dropped to the fourth spot in its second week with $8.9M and $35.7M.

Film Headline News

Kiki's Delivery Service Gets Live-Action Rendition

Walt Disney Pictures has plans to turn the Japanese book series, KIKIS DELIVERY SERVICE, into a live-action feature film, reports VARIETY. Oscar-winning animation director Hayao Miyazaki previously turned the series into an acclaimed anime film. Screenwriter Jeff Stockwell (THE DANGEROUS LIVES OF ALTAR BOYS) will pen the script based on Eiko Kadano's books.

The story follows 13-year-old burgeoning witch Kiki who moves to the city with her talking cat Jiji where she becomes delivery person for a local bakery.

Headline News

Casino Royale Confirmed as Next Bond Flick

Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, producers of the James Bond films, and MGM announced that Martin Campbell will direct CASINO ROYALE, the 21st film in the 007 franchise. This is Campbell's second time as helmer of a James Bond film. In 1995 he directed the hit GOLDENEYE, which introduced Pierce Brosnan to the role of 007.

Animation Headline News

Gang of Seven Does Short Animation for Son of the Mask

Gang of Seven (G7) Animation recently completed work on a number of animated sequences for the upcoming New Line feature film, SON OF THE MASK, the sequel to the hit film, THE MASK and stars Jamie Kennedy as animator Tim Avery. The feature is set for release Feb. 18, 2005.

Million Headline News

Who’s Tommy Most Expensive Animated Film Ever?

GREASE producer Robert Stigwood is planning to turn The Whos seminal rock opera TOMMY in the most expensive animated feature of all time. The film would be budgeted between $300 to $400 million and would feature voice work from top singers like Robbie Williams and Bono.

"Pete Townshend is right behind this. It will feature the biggest names in the music industry. The original movie costs 3-4 million dollars but this will cost 300-400 million dollars. If you are going to do it, you've got to do it right," said Stigwood.

Headline News

Hide and Seek Scares Up Box Office

Foxs horror thriller HIDE AND SEEK pushed out Sonys ARE WE THERE YET? in its theatrical debut for the weekend ended Jan. 30, 2005. HIDE AND SEEK pulled in $21.9M while ARE WE THERE YET? followed at number two with $16.3M and a two-week cume of $38.4M. Meanwhile, Clint Eastwoods MILLION DOLLAR BABY took off the gloves as it entered wide release and was the biggest box office recipient as a result of its seven Oscar noms, including Best Picture. The acclaimed Warner Bros. drama knocked down $12.2M and $21.5M to finish third.

Nick Headline News

Williams Goes Krazees for Paramount & Nick

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, January 26, 2005 at 12:00am

Paramount Pictures and Nick Movies have hired Robin Williams to star in a screen adaptation of the preschool book THE KRAZEES, reports HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Sam Swope wrote and Eric Brace illustrated the book, which follows a young girl who encounters on polka-dotted krazees that emerge on gloomy days. Derek Guiley and David Schneiderman (CHASING LIBERTY) have the task of adapting the screenplay, which will include a new character for Williams to play.

Imax Headline News

The Polar Express in IMAX 3D Steams Past $40 Million

Warner Bros. Pictures' THE POLAR EXPRESS: AN IMAX 3D EXPERIENCE has achieved a box office milestone, surpassing $40 million in total gross receipts in just 11 weeks of release. Already the highest grossing IMAX DMR (Digitally Re-mastered) release to date, having shattered the previous record of $14 million in just 22 weeks, the film continues to fill IMAX theaters well after the end of the holiday season.

Spot Headline News

Are We There Yet? Shoots Over Coach Carter

The Sony comedy ARE WE THERE YET? debuted in the number one spot with $18.5M for the weekend ended Jan. 23, 2005. Paramounts COACH CARTER came in second in its sophomore week with $10.5M and $42.7M. Universals MEET THE FOCKERS dropped to third with $9.6M and $247.2M. Universals IN GOOD COMPANY took the fourth spot with $7.9M and $27.4M.

Headline News

Ghost Rider Gets Its Blackheart

Columbia Pictures has announced that Wes Bentley (AMERICAN BEAUTY) has been cast as Blackheart in the upcoming GHOST RIDER feature, reports VARIETY. DAREDEVIL helmer Mark Steven Johnson will direct the film based on the Marvel comic, which chronicles the adventures of stunt motorcyclist Johnny Blaze (Nicolas Cage) who pacts with Mephistopheles to save his true loveís life. Blackheart is Mephistopheles's son as well as chief nemesis. Michael De Luca, Avi Arad, Gary Foster and Ari Arad are producing. Shane Salerno wrote the script with rewrites by Johnson and David S. Goyer.