Thursday night at Comic-Con was insane. For some reason, all the studios decided to throw massive parties and hold insanely cool stuff on the same night. I was invited to about 7 things that would normally be a fantastic night, but due to time and schedule, I could only do a fraction of what I was offered. So what ended up winning out? Some guy named Peter Jackson.
So if you’re a fan of his work, after the jump you can read some updates on “The Hobbit”, the “Lord of the Rings” Blu-rays, “District 9″, and “The Lovely Bones”.
A quick note: The reason I have info on the various projects that Peter Jackson has in development is I was invited to a small gathering of both print and online journalists after attending the first screening of “District 9″. A group of us were invited to talk with Peter in an informal setting and not use any quotes of what he said. So here’s some stuff I learned tonight.
Peter told us the first draft of the script gets delivered to the studio in 3 weeks. He went on to sale that zero casting has been done on the project and any rumors you hear are just that – rumors. He explained that they can’t start casting till they have a budget and schedule as they have to be able to tell an actor when they’d be needed. He also said the studio hasn’t officially green lit the project yet.
Peter also told us that the current plan is to release the first “Hobbit” film in December of 2011 and the second one in December of 2012. This is assuming everything comes together.
LORD OF THE RINGS Blu-ray
Before the evening started tonight, I was one of the early people at the informal gathering. Since I knew I wouldn’t have much time with Peter on my own, I asked the one thing every fan of “Lord of the Rings” wants to know – when are his amazing movies going to hit Blu-ray, and would the extended editions be included with the theatrica,l or would they be a separate purchase.
Here’s the bad news.
He told me the first editions to hit Blu-ray are going to be the theatrical versions and a year later we’d get the extended editions. The only good news is he told me the studio has started talking to him about doing some new extras for the Blu-ray extended editions. No word on exactly what the new stuff might be.
At 7pm tonight, Sony world-premiered their upcoming sci-fi film “District 9″ which Peter Jackson produced. I’ll have a lot more to say about this film but the quick info is that it’s fucking great. We were asked not to tell you too much about it as to preserve the mystery, but suffice it to say it’s unlike anything I’ve seen and you will not believe what they managed to do with $30 million dollars. Also, Peter told us all the aliens were CGI in the movie, and that’s another thing that I couldn’t believe. They had some close-ups that looked truly amazing and it really looks so much more expensive than that price. If you thought the month of August would let you down, this is something to be excited for.
THE LOVELY BONES
The final thing I saw before leaving the gathering was four and a half minutes from Peter’s next film “The Lovely Bones”. What we saw was footage from what appeared to be the entire movie and I have to say, it looked a lot better than I expected. For some reason I wasn’t that excited for this film, but after tonight, that’s all changed.If the final film is as strong as the footage we saw this evening, it’s on the list of films that could win some of the big awards.
Since many of you haven’t read the book and don’t like spoilers, we got to see what Susie Salmon’s (Saoirse Ronan) life was before, what happened to her, and what went on after. Suffice it to say, I was captivated by all the footage and cannot wait to see the film at the end of the year.
I have so much more to tell all of you, but it’s 2am and I have to be up in a few hours. Just know I did over 10 interviews today and most were 1-on-1s. I also spoke to some of the “Twilight: New Moon” cast…so get ready for that.
Lots more tomorrow. Until then…