Spielberg and Jackson's 'Tintin' is go!

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Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson are hard at work on their mammoth 'Tintin' trilogy

We’ve known for a while that a trilogy of Tintin movies was on its way: the first to be directed by Steven Spielberg, the second by Peter Jackson, and the third by an as-yet-unnamed lucky winner.

We were surprised, however, to learn this week that shooting on the first movie, ‘The Secret of the Unicorn’, has been completed. Spielberg and crew just wrapped an under-the-radar 32-day run of performance capture sessions with the principal cast, which includes Jamie Bell as our plucky, bequiffed hero and Daniel Craig as his nemesis Red Rackham. Rounding out the cast are motion capture stalwart Andy Serkis as seafaring boozehound Captain Haddock, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as the bumbling Thompson twins and the ubiquitous Mackenzie Crook as an unnamed, but surely villainous sidekick type character. There’s no word yet on how much of the actors' physical performances will remain in the finished film: Pegg and Frost, for example, are playing identical twins, which is going to require a fair amount of digital trickery.

And here’s where things get interesting. By all accounts, Spielberg’s part in the proceedings is largely over: the mo-cap footage he shot will now be transported to New Zealand, where Jackson and his WETA digital team will oversee the translation from live action to digital animation. The film’s producers insist that Spielberg will be credited as the film’s sole director and that he will oversee the final cut by way of a video conferencing system, but they also insist that this is a groundbreaking collaboration where the lines between director, producer and special effects team are uniquely blurred.

As if all this wasn’t enough, Time Out’s interest was also piqued by the film’s scriptwriting team, a bizarre dream team of British film and TV talent: Steven Moffat is a current 'Doctor Who' alumnus who also brought us the best-forgotten ‘Jekyll’ series, while Edgar Wright is, of course, the writer-director behind such homegrown hits as ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz’ (and surely an obvious choice to take the helm on the mysterious third episode). And rounding out the team? Yes, it’s Joe Cornish, the tall posh one in still surprisingly funny comedy duo Adam and Joe. It’s a long uphill trek from DIY stuffed-toy remakes of ‘Trainspotting’ to collaborating with Steven Spielberg, but it couldn’t happen to a more deserving chap. Except, possibly, Joe’s rounder, hairier and – dare we say it? – slightly funnier compadré Adam Buxton. Come on, Spielberg, how about ‘The Adventures of Ken Korda’?

Author: Tom Huddleston



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