Tolkien fans around the world are preparing for the December 14 release of 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' in many different ways. Some have gone back to painstakingly watch Peter Jackson's original 'Lord of the Rings' trilogy (even if it takes place afterward), while others continue gluing their own hair to prosthetic feet in preparation for attending the release in costume. But how is life-long Tolkien fan Stephen Colbert preparing? With a full week of 'The Colbert Report' dedicated to the film, and spotlighting its cast as guests! Who will be in attendance?
Andy Serkis has become synonymous with motion capture performance and for good reason. Just look at his resume: he was Gollum in the 'Lord of the Rings' films, the title ape himself in 'King Kong,' Caesar in 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes' and 'Captain Haddock in 'The Adventures of Tin Tin.' It's probably safe to say that he knows this kind of filmmaking like the back of his hand. So it's not surprising that his directorial debut will be a motion capture project, but it's a little surprising that it will be an adaptation of George Orwell's 'Animal Farm.'
When utilized properly, motion capture animation can be astonishing. Look at Andy Serkis in 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes' or the vast majority of James Cameron's 'Avatar,' which brought the technology to exciting and intimidating new places. Which brings us to 'Tarzan 3D,' a German production that aims to bring Edgar Rice Burroughs' classic character back to the big screen using the same tech that made the Na'vi and Pandora a reality. With the first trailer here, it's time to start making direct and unfair comparisons between this film and its American counterparts.
It's hard to keep track of all the great stories coming out of CinemaCon this week, but one of the coolest is the news that 20th Century Fox is gearing up for a sequel to 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes.' One of last year's most pleasant surprises, the film was both a critical and commercial success, and Fox is saying that they want to start shooting this summer.