The adaptation of adventures novel series The 39 Clues is now in the hands of director Shawn Levy (Real Steel). The feature rights to the on-going 15-volume series were acquired by DreamWorks as a project originally intended for Steven Spielberg. When that didn’t pan out, Brett Ratner stepped in to direct with Spielberg staying on as a producer, but that must have fallen through as well. That’s good news for the series, in my humble opinion, as DreamWorks is envisioning The 39 Clues as a family-friendly, action/adventure film franchise. Levy already brings experience in that realm, citing the Night at the Museum films. Then again, Levy is attached to damn near everything at the moment, including the Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson team-up comedy, Interns, which shoots this summer. After that, who knows. Hit the jump for more on Levy and The 39 Clues.
With Brett Ratner’s comedy Tower Heist opening this weekend, I was able to chat with the busy director on the phone when he was in New York City promoting the movie. Starring Eddie Murphy, Ben Stiller, Matthew Broderick, Casey Affleck, Gabourey Sidibe, Téa Leoni, Stephen Henderson, Judd Hirsch, Michael Peña, and Alan Alda, Tower Heist centers on a group of disgruntled employees who decide to rob a white-collar criminal living under house arrest in their high-rise after he scams them all out of their savings.
During our wide-ranging conversation, Ratner talked about how he got involved in the project and who was originally going to star in it, the test screening process, deleted scenes, improv, what will be on the Blu-ray/DVD, and what it was like to work with Eddie Murphy. In addition, Ratner talked about producing next year’s Oscars, future projects like Movie 43, 39 Clues, Hercules, Hong Kong Phooey, Beverly Hills Copy 4, Rush Hour 4, the Woody Allen documentary that he’s producing, and a lot more. Hit the jump for the interview and audio.
Steven Spielberg will be giving audiences a one-two punch this December when he releases the 3D motion-capture film The Adventures of Tintin on December 23rd and follows it five days later with the drama War Horse. He’ll follow these two films with his star-studded biopic Lincoln. Spielberg tells the Orlando Sentinel [via The Film Stage] that the film, based on Doris Kearns Goodwin’s Team of Rivals, will focus on the last four months of the 16th president’s life. Furthermore, the drama won’t be a “battlefield movie”, but “there are battles in it, and being in Virginia, we have access to those historic battlefields. It is really a movie about the great work Abraham Lincoln did in the last months of his life.” I hope the film begins with Lincoln being super-excited for that new play coming to Ford’s Theatre.
The film stars Daniel-Day Lewis as Abraham Lincoln, Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Robert Todd Lincoln, Tommy Lee Jones as Thaddeus Stevens, David Strathairn as Secretary of State William Seward, Walton Goggins as congressman Wells A. Hutchins, and Lee Pace as New York City mayor Fernando Wood. Spielberg says Lincoln “will be purposely coming out AFTER next year’s election. I didn’t want it to become political fodder.” Hit the jump for details on The 39 Clues.
Director Brett Ratner (X-Men: The Last Stand) has been tapped to direct the live-action adaptation of the Scholastic young-adult book series, The 39 Clues. According to Deadline, Ratner will once again collaborate with scribe Jeff Nathanson on the project which DreamWorks initially envisioned as a directing vehicle for Steven Spielberg (a studio can dream, can’t they?). Ratner and Nathanson have previously collaborated on Rush Hour 2 and Rush Hour 3 and most recently on Ratner’s upcoming action/comedy Tower Heist. That film is due out later this year on November 4 and stars Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Matthew Broderick, Casey Affleck, and Tea Leoni.
As for The 39 Clues, the popular book series/online game/card collection recently published its eleventh installment which focuses on the Cahill family (a.k.a. “the most powerful family in the world”). For more on the series, hit the jump to check out a synopsis for the book’s first installment, The Maze of Bones.
Steven Spielberg may lead the robot uprising and make his next movie Robopocalypse. Deadline reports that after the fizzled attempts to remake Harvey or adapt the Matt Helm books, Spielberg may now have his sights set on Drew Goddard’s (Cloverfield) adaptation of Daniel H. Wilson’s comic how-to guide about the human race’s attempt to survive an apocalyptic robot uprising (which is redundant; I’m pretty sure all robot uprisings result in apocalypse).
Keep in mind, there are plenty of other projects Spielberg could choose. He could choose to finally pluck his Abraham Lincoln-Civil War movie out of development hell, move on the George Gershwin biopic starring Zachary Quinto (although Deadline says that’s unlikely), or he could adapt Flowers for Algernon with Will Smith, the adventure book series The 39 Clues, Michael Crichton’s Pirates Latitude, Michael Morpugo’s War Horse, or anything else he wants because he’s Steven Spielberg and his movies have made more money than most small countries.
As we all play the waiting game, hit the jump for the full description of Robopocalypse‘s source material, How To Survive a Robot Uprising: Tips on Defending Yourself Against the Coming Rebellion.
Thanks to the success of “Twilight” it looks like we are going to get a couple of adaptations of other successful book series which are aimed at the young-adult crowd. Most of these will be pitched as “It’s like Twilight meets…” and the latest book series that is on its way to the big screen, “Wicked”, is being sold as that. The project is being described as “‘Twilight’ meets ‘Wanted’ with witchcraft” and will probably become a franchise at DreamWorks. Also, Steven Spielberg might jump in on this book series craze by maybe directing an adaptation of “The 39 Clues”. You can get all the details after the jump.