Posted on Thursday, June 16th, 2011 by Germain Lussier
Formerly of Mars, John Carter will be Oscar-winning director Andrew Stanton‘s first foray into live action. And by “live action” we mean real actors interacting with the type of high end digital effects that take well over a year to craft correctly. Stanton has been hard at work on his adaptation of the classic Edgar Rice Burroughs novel about a Civil War soldier transported to Mars who becomes something of a red planet superhero, helping to liberate the natives. Disney will release the film, starring Taylor Kitsch, Willem Dafoe, Mark Strong, Thomas Hayden Church and Samantha Morton on March 9, 2012 and they just released the first poster.
In addition, Stanton did an extensive, but cryptic, interview about the film revealing some gorgeous concept art, plus there’s a rumor brewing that we might see a trailer next month. Read more about it all after the break.
First up, let’s talk about when we might see footage. An Edgar Rice Burroughs fansite called ERBzine is reporting that the first teaser trailer for John Carter will be attached to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 on July 15. I think every movie in the world wants to be attached to that film so, it makes sense to say that, but being as it’s not the same studio, don’t hold your breath. Still, that’s just a rumor, lets move on to more concrete info.
The Los Angeles Times spoke to Stanton about John Carter, covering a whole list of topics. They also revealed this concept art. Check out the images here.
Here are a few highlights of Stanton’s interview.
On the look of the film:
I wanted things to look beat-up and old. This may sound weird, but I was always so impressed by the Monty Python films and Terry Gilliam’s sense of production value. Things really felt like they had been through the mud….I remember once we had this great big deck gun and my weapons guy made this beautiful object. In his mind it looks weathered but I stepped back about 20 feet and said from here it looks brand new. I told him he should go take an ax to it and get it some really big nicks to it. He said, “You’re kidding me?” But he did it, he took the ax to it, he wouldn’t let anybody else do it to his baby. But that’s how we wanted everything, dirty, used, distressed and, hopefully, historical.
On what films he watched to infuse the film:
I looked at things like “Apocaplyto” and “Rome” and even things like “Shogun” and “Lawrence of Arabia,” things that as a viewer I could accept as having a level of historical research….We tried to make it feel like we’re going with the story of what really happened. This is how it was, this is how those cultures really existed.
On not showing up at Comic Con:
I think what it was is the perception that it’s getting harder and harder to stand out amid the din. We’re going to do our special event to get some focus and separation. I know some people will read that as a sign that we’re unsure of our property. It’s just the opposite. We want to control how and what is being seen and the way it is presented. So much stuff now is just spit out so fast and the churn of it all. You almost gain nothing by talking about things really early in this day and age. I think in the future we might see things arrive the way Prince announces a concert where a few days before the show he announces it and tickets just go up. You might see that with movies and other things. That seems like the only way to get people interested and then capitalize off that interest.
Head over to the LA Times for much more from Stanton, including his adaptation of the original books, thoughts on the process and how his film will be influenced by others.