Universal Pictures has released a new trailer for The Tale of Despereaux, the new computer animated family fantasy adventure from Sam Fell (Flushed Away) and Robert Stevenhagen (supervising animator of Space Jam and An American Tail: Fievel Goes West).
This trailer makes the film look less like a copy of Ratatouille (a problem I had with the teaser). The film doesn’t look all that special compared to even Dreamworks’ Monsters vs. Aliens. The animated adaptation features the voices of Emma Watson, Dustin Hoffman, Christopher Lloyd, Sigourney Weaver, Matthew Broderick, and Kevin Kline. Watch the trailer after the jump, and tell me what you think in the comments below.
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The rumors are true. Seth Rogen was able to convince Huey Lewis to record a title theme song for the upcoming Judd Apatow stoner comedy Pineapple Express.
“It is called Pineapple Express, cleverly,” director David Gordon Green told movieweb. “Our only input was, we told him we wanted it to sound like his 80s work that we loved so much. And we wanted to have the plot in it. And we wanted to have him say the title as many times as he could. There is a lot of alto sax. It is kind of like that ‘other’ Back to the Future Huey Lewis song. Not ‘Power of Love’ but ‘Back in Time’. Yeah.”
Here are the lyrics from the song’s chorus:
We got trouble,
we got to get out of here.
I’ve got you,
you’ve got me.
We are as high as we can be.
That’s all right.
How did we get into this mess?
Sounds like an instant classic to me! Unfortunately we’ll have to wait until August 8th 2008 to hear it. But for now, enjoy this vintage music video for Huey Lewis & the News’ Power of Love which features a cameo of Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown with his time traveling Delorean.
Discuss: How cool is Huey Lewis?
Roads? Where we’re going we don’t need roads…
Christopher Lloyd has stepped back in front of the cameras, reprising the now classic role of Doc Brown from the Back to the Future trilogy. But sadly this film shoot was not for a fourth Back to the Future film. This time the mad time-traveling scientist makes an appearance in a new music video by Universal Motown recording artist O’neal McKnight Featuring Greg Nice.
If my calculations are correct, the last time Lloyd appeared as Doc Brown was in 1992 for live-action segments of the Back to the Future animated series (Actually, I just remembered that Lloyd also returned as the famous Doc for a Back to the Future Slot Machine in Las Vegas).
The new music video, directed by ‘X’, features a bearded Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown and an adventure involving the DeLorean time machine. McKnight goes back to the future with Doc Brown to get a glimpse into his life and relationship with a beautiful lady whom he meets while at a New York City dance club.
No details on when the video will be released (or for that matter, where it will be played, since MTV no longer plays music videos, at least from what I gather). For now we’ll have to settle for a set of these photo stills, and a behind the scenes video which is available for your viewing pleasure on BTTF.com.
Discuss: Would you like to see a Back to the Future 4? Pitch me your story ideas!
Robert Zemeckis has signed a bunch of new stars for his upcoming performance capture digital 3-D adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.
Robert Zemeckis revealed in the official Beowulf podcast that Bob Hoskins, Colin Firth and Gary Oldman have officially joined the cast. Robin Wright Penn also announced that she will also be involved in the project.
Hoskins, who will play Mr. Fezziwig, inadvertently and prematurely announced his involvement in the project before Zemeckis had made an official announcement, which I think pissed off some higher ups. And when the project was announced the studio denied that any deal had yet been made with him. But this is the first official confirmation of his involvement.
What we already know: Zemeckis wrote the script specifically for Jim Carrey, who stars as four different characters: Ebenezer Scrooge (at various different ages), the Ghost of Christmas Past, the Ghost of Christmas Present and the Ghost of Christmas Future. Tom Hanks (Bob Cratchit), Christopher Lloyd (Marley’s Ghost) and Michael J. Fox (Tiny Tim) are also rumored to be involved in the film, but have yet to be officially confirmed.
And before you ask, I’m not sure if the teaser movie poster to the upper right is legit or fan made. The art makes me believe it’s legit, the lettering makes me think it might be a fan creation.
While I see the potential of performance capture technology, and admire Zemeckis for pioneering the new form of filmmaking, I’m still not sold on the result thus far. The animation feels stiff, the people look like zombies, and the action looks like a highly rendered video game cut scene. And while I loved Beowulf for the 3D, I totally don’t understand why someone would create a character (Angelina Jolie for instance) who looks exactly like the real actor. Doesn’t that negate most of the benefits of the technology?
In Beowulf, I found Ray Winstone and Chrispin Glover’s (who played Grendal) performances to be the most interesting. Maybe because the animators didn’t have to concern themselves with making the animated characters look and move exactly like the performance captured actors. After all, animation is all about exaggeration of movements, and that’s why it works.
Anyway, my point is that the performance capture technology has yet to deliver a product that couldn’t have been made faster, cheaper and better looking using traditional film methods.Â I think something like James Cameron’s Avatar might accomplish this feat. And while I like the gimmick of Jim Carrey playing four characters, one of the characters at different ages (taking full advantage of the technology), the rest of the book is mostly talking and walking. And while I’ll anxiously await anything Zemeckis will ever create, I just wish he would pick some more visual and cinematic stories for this new format.
A Christmas Carol will hit theaters on November 6th, 2009.