Arabian Knights , Super 8 , The Muppets , The Lost Years Of Merlin , Maleficent , Highlander , arty vampires
Not that it reveals much more than what you can glean from the trailer, to be honest, but here you go – a tiny slice of JJ Abrams’s ET with lens flare (and there’s some great lens flare action going on here):
Universal is in final negotiations to acquire Arabian Knights , a pitch by scriptwriter/producer Kyle Ward ( Fiasco Heights , Kane & Lynch , Hitman 2 and the upcoming game adaptation Devil May Cry ). It is described as being “radically different” from FilmDistrict's Arabian Nights , which has Liam Hemsworth attached to star, according to Variety . Well, it’s got a K in the title for a start.
Quite why this story needs a headline when the image is pretty self evident is a good question. The film is out in the States on Doctor Who ’s birthday (come on, you don’t need telling that’s 23 November, surely?) and co-starring with Kermit and co are Chris Cooper, Jason Segel and Amy Adams, with cameos including Zach Galifianakis, Billy Crystal, Jack Black and Jean-Claude Van Damme (he’d better do the splits!). It’s directed by James Bobin (one of the creative geniuses behind Flight Of The Conchords ) with a script from Jason Segel and Nicholas Stoller. “There’s something about these full-figured Muppets that kind of blew me away,” Segel tells USA Today about his reaction to the posters, before promising that the movie will have, “every Muppet you could possibly think of,” including the Swedish Chef and Beaker. The film also introduces a new Muppet called Walter (left), Segel’s character’s room mate, and a huge Muppets fan.
Add Another Merlin To The List
Arthurian legend is all the rage at the moment, clearly. First we had Merlin , then Camelot , and now The Lost Years Of Merlin (sadly Arthur has nothing to do with Excalibur and round tables, it turns out). According to The Hollywood Reporter , Warner Bros is set to produce a big screen adaptation of TA Barron’s young adult book series (which is planned to go on for 12 books). Newcomer scriptwriter Ed Whitworth is set to adapt the first tome for the screen. The film’s press blurb fills us in: “A raging sea tosses a boy upon the shores of ancient Wales. Left for dead, he has no memory, no name, and no home. But it is his determination to find out who he is – to learn the truth about his mysterious powers – that leads him to a strange and enchanted land. And it is there he discovers that the fate of this land and his personal quest are strangely entwined.” This could all end up as a new kind of wizarding wars.
Tim Burton Departs From Maleficent
Tim Burton will no longer direct Maleficent, the Disney live-action fantasy that retells the story of Sleeping Beauty from the viewpoint of the evil witch. According to The Hollywood Reporter , the Mouse House still intends to make the movie, and Harry Potter 5-8 director David Yates is one of the names being bandied about as a possible replacement.
Reboot Takes Another Step Forward
Although it’s still a long way from actually going in front of the camera, the Highlander reboot has taken another step nearer to reality with the news that RCR Media Group has joined forces with Summit (the production company behind the Twilight films) to fund the project. Justin Lin ( Fast Five ) is currently attached to direct; he’s the guy who’s also trying to get a new Terminator film made. In a few years’ time we really will know if he’s the King Of The Reboots. Or not.
Indie Darling Moves Into Vampire Territory
Legendary indie film maker Jim Jarmusch ( Stranger Than Paradise , Ghost Dog: The Way Of The Samurai ) is set to make a vampire film, described by ScreenDaily as a “crypto-vampire love story, set against the romantic desolation of Detroit and Tangiers.” Among the actors already attached are Tilda Swinton (left), Michael Fassbender, John Hurt and Mia Wasikowska. Somehow, Tilda Swinton starring in an arty vampire movie feels like something that was always destined to happen.