Popcorn: Belated praise for Fantastic Mr Fox
W es Anderson's gorgeous Fantastic Mr Fox received top prizes at the 50th Annecy International Animation Film Festival in France last week, with the film taking top prizes of The Cristal for best feature and also the Audience Award. The Roald Dahl adaptation (which you really should rent if you haven't seen it already) outfoxed dozens of other animated films from around the world.
Titans to clash again
With a worldwide box office take of nearly half a billion dollars, it was almost inevitable that a Clash of the Titans sequel would see the light of day. In fact, the biggest surprise is that an announcement wasn't made sooner. At the time of writing, director Louis Leterrier is not confirmed to return, and neither are Sam Worthington (whose schedule will be filled with Avatar 2 for a while), Liam Neeson or Ralph Fiennes. Let's hope at least some of them come back -- as one blogger put it "even Police Academy got the entire original cast locked in for four films".
Atlas shrugs into production
Following decades of almost-deals and rumours, a relatively low-budget film adaptation of Atlas Shrugged is finally moving into production. Paul Johansson, co-star of teen series One Tree Hill, will be starring in and directing the film, which starts shooting this week. First published in 1957, the hefty tome by Ayn Rand takes place in a dystopian version of America in which society has collapsed while the government increases its control over industry. Of all the potential adaptations, the most high-profile one was probably in 2007, when Angelina Jolie, below, was hoping to star in a film co-written by Randall Wallace (Braveheart).
And speaking of Angelina Jolie, the actress may be playing Cleopatra in a new historical epic. Producer Scott Rudin (There will be Blood, The Truman Show) has bought the rights to Cleopatra: A Life, written by Pulitzer-winning author Stacy Shiff. "The movie is being developed for and with Jolie," said a spokesperson for Rudin. Readers with long memories might remember some of the dozens of Cleopatra films, from the silent era up to the misbegotten Liz Taylor/Richard Burton project. The latter was the most expensive film ever at the time, with an estimated budget of $44m.
Don't tell Mom the Babysitter's retread
Groan. It looks like mediocre teen farce Don't tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead is up for the remake treatment. Producer Mark Gordon (The Day After Tomorrow) is eyeing the 1991 Christina Applegate-starring comedy for a retread. The original film follows a group of teens who must fend for themselves when (you're way ahead of me) their minder passes away.
Christopher Nolan talks Batman, Inception
In a public Q&A in the Hero Complex Film festival in LA, director Christopher Nolan talked about his work on (among other films) Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. He addressed internet rumours about the franchise: Cher won't be appearing as Catwoman and it may be in 3D (though Nolan doesn't particularly like the format). He also said that his forthcoming Inception will be light on computer-generated effects: "I've always had a belief that however sophisticated the process of animation is, the audience can always tell the difference between something that has been photographed and something that has been animated by an artist."