Nikki Finke writes: I just heard that Universal has declined to exercise an option to co-finance DreamWorks’ Tintin with Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson set to begin filming in October. The decision was quietly made a few weeks ago. So now DreamWorks will look only to owner Paramount for the rest of the moolah in the same way the two shared financing on Dreamgirls and Transformers. Unfortunately, Paramount is presently without an overall financing deal to mitigate risk, but is arranging it on a film-by-film basis. I say Tintin — to be played by Love Actually’s Thomas Sangster — sounds like an expensive but safe bet, considering that the beloved Belgian boy is a worldwide phenomenon, and that the two great filmmakers are directing and producing even though also participating as huge first-dollar-gross players. This latest wrinkle would be more interesting if, say, Uni’s decision hurt its about-to-become-closer relationship with DreamWorks. But it didn’t. As I already reported, GE’s Jeff Immelt and Uni’s Ron Meyer dined with Spielberg and Stacey Snider Thursday night while NBC Uni’s Jeff Zucker spent the better part of that afternoon with Steven planning out the rebuild of the fire-ravaged backlot.
Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson may go a step further in their plans for three Tintin movies – by jointly directing the third installment. Spielberg raised the possibility before the release of his latest film, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, which had its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival at the weekend. “We are going to make three Tintin movies back-to-back. I’ll direct the first one, Peter will direct the second one. We’ll probably co-direct the third one.” Steven Spielberg reveals more Tintin plans
London’s Daily Mail reported that the lucky lad is 17-year-old British actor Thomas Sangster, who has appeared in Love, Actually and Nanny McPhee and has a role in Jane Campion’s Bright Star, which is about to begin filming. A spokesman for Spielberg’s DreamWorks studio declined comment. While specifics about the project have been kept under wraps, Andy Serkis, who is set to play Tintin’s globe-trotting buddy, Captain Haddock, recently told the IndieLondon website that he is about to begin work on the back-to-back features, with Spielberg handling the first film and Jackson taking the directorial reigns for the second.
Filming has begun on the dual features adapting Herge’s beloved comic strip ‘Tintin’. Empire caught up with Andy Serkis who talked a bit about the filming, which is taking place in New Zealand. “It was on the Avatar’ stage,” Serkis told Empire, referring to James Cameron’s long-anticipated all-CGI epic. “We had this incredible week. Cameron was there, Peter Jackson was there (who’s directing one of the three Tintin films), and Steven Spielberg was there (who’s directing another). All in the same room!” Andy Serkis says ‘Tintin’ work has begun
Auditions are under way in Los Angeles for some of the key supporting roles in three Tintin movies to be directed by Peter Jackson and Steven Spielberg. Movie website IGN.com reported that auditions were taking place for 16 characters, included identical police officers Thomson and Thompson. Jackson and Spielberg will direct at least one movie each, with Spielberg filming his in Los Angeles and Jackson in Wellington – but the two have been tight- lipped about casting or which of the 23 Tintin books they will film. Auditions start for Peter Jackson’s Tintin