artemis fowl image

When you want an actor to give off an air of “gravelly, Churchillian, curmudgeonly” authority, you turn to Dame Judi Dench. The legendary actress made headlines when she was cast as Commander Root in Artemis Fowl, taking on a character originally written as male. But if you’re going to gender-bend any character in this urban fantasy film, there’s no better option than with the Dame herself.

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kenneth branagh artemis fowl

On the set of Artemis Fowl in London, Kenneth Branagh paces a cramped old English study, filled to the brim with funky baubles and trinkets. He’s in the midst of directing Disney’s long-awaited adaptation of Eoin Colfer‘s fantasy novel, the first in a series of eight books that were devoured by thousands of young readers growing up in the early 2000s. I was one of those fans — my old paperback copies of the Artemis Fowl books are still tattered from the intense speed with which I tore through them. They’re no Harry Potter knock-offs like many reviewers at the time had brushed them off as, but could maybe be labeled as an urban fantasy series for the cool, alternative kids who thought Harry was too vanilla.

So I was eager to talk to Branagh about his upcoming feature adaptation of Artemis Fowl, which is set to hit theaters on August 9, 2019. Based on the first 2001 entry in Colfer’s Artemis Fowl series, the story follows a 12-year-old boy genius and aspiring criminal mastermind named Artemis II who kidnaps a fairy to find his missing father.

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Artemis Fowl

Eoin Colfer‘s Artemis Fowl was a pretty big deal when it first hit shelves in 2001, enough so that Miramax quickly snapped up the film rights that same year. But nothing came of that deal, and even as contemporaries like Harry Potter, The Golden Compass, and Eragon have made their way to multiplexes, Artemis Fowl has been left behind.

Given the industry’s current obsession with all things YA, though, it was only a matter of time before someone got it into their heads to give Artemis Fowl another shot. That someone, it turns out, is Harvey Weinstein and Disney. They’ve just set Michael Goldenberg (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix) to pen the script, with Robert De Niro and Jane Rosenthal producing. Hit the jump for all the details.

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airman_1

ImageMovers, the Robert Zemeckis motion-capture animation studio behind Beowulf and A Christmas Carol, has a new project. Ann Peacock, who wrote the adaptation of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, is penning an adaptation of the Eoin Colfer novel Airman, which sounds a bit like a combination of The Rocketeer and the mid-period movies by Miyazaki. Could this be the mo-cap project to convince non-believers like myself? Read More »