One of the movies that kicked off the current wave of 3D films was Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D, which arrived more than a year before Avatar cemented 3D as the next big wave in theatrical technology. Now the sequel to that movie is finished, with Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson stepping in for former lead Brendan Fraser. He plays the new stepfather to young adventurer Sean, once again played by Josh Hutcherson, and Michael Caine plays Sean’s long-lost explorer grandfather. Luis Guzman is the hapless, bungling comic relief, and Vanessa Hudgens plays his daughter, who naturally becomes the love interest for Sean.
Like the first film, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island looks like a pretty cheap affair. It is obviously made as easy family adventure, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But families and their kids now routinely watch stuff that looks a whole lot more well-crafted than this, so I wonder how people will respond. The best effect isn’t even a CGI dinosaur, but the Rock’s pecs.
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We may not want to admit it, but the 2008 3D film Journey to the Center of the Earth was a $100 million hit. So, of course, production just started on the sequel. Journey 2: The Mysterious Island brings back star Josh Hutcherson as he sets out on another adventure. This time, however, Brendan Frasier is nowhere to be found. Instead, he’s been replaced by Dwayne Johnson (already back to family films after Faster and Fast Five) who stars along with Michael Caine, Vanessa Hudgens, Luis Guzman and Kristin Davis. Directed by Brad Peyton (Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore), the 3D sequel is now shooting in Hawaii before moving to North Carolina. After the break, read the official plot description and check out some set photos. Read More »
I wonder if Kristin Davis is realizing that it’s a good time to do something that is very explicitly not like Sex and the City. She’s got a couple of projects brewing. One is a single-camera TV series based on the Gretchen Rubin memoir The Happiness Project, which she’ll star in and co-exec produce with Kristin Newman. And, more appropriate for us, she’s joined the cast of the sequel to Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D. Read More »
The cast is coming together for Journey 2: The Sequel You Might Not Be Keen to See. (OK, the actual subtitle to the Journey to the Center of the Earth sequel is The Mysterious Island.) Josh Hutcherson, returning from the first film, will be joined by Dwayne Johnson, and now Michael Caine will play the grandfather of Hutcherson’s character. Read More »
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I don’t imagine there’s going to be much fan loyalty to either Louis Letterier or Eric Brevig for their first films in the Clash of the Titans and Journey to the Centre of the Earth franchises, and it looks like there’s going to be no studio loyalty either. As sequels to both films start to gear up in the Warner Bros. back office, it has become clear that new helmsmen are being sought, with pace of turnaround being the real priority.
As far as Journey goes, there’s one name being touted already: Brad Peyton. He’s got Cats and Dogs sequel The Revenge of Kitty Galore coming up this summer, and I’m doubtful it will make for much of an auspicious feature debut. On the other hand, his “cartoon gothic” shorts Evelyn: The Cutest Evil Dead Girl and A Tale of Bad Luck were very well received and seemed to suggest he was at least going to become a director who could pack out signing sessions down at Hot Topic. Rather than Journey, I’d far rather hear about him going off to shoot Billy Grimm, the film he’s been developing with Ginger Snaps‘ superb screenwriter Karen Walton.
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