- A few days ago, it was announced that Guillermo Del Toro had stepped down from his position as the director of the two Hobbit films. Apparently, the delays in obtaining a start date for the shoot was adding on too much time to his already considerable commitment. He’d promised 3 years, but the project was starting to look like it would take double that to complete. I really can’t say that I blame him for moving on because we’re not exactly talking in days or months, are we? I’m sure that he’s undoubtedly got the next several years worth of projects lined up, which isn’t surprising, given Del Toro’s creative capacity. An extra 3 years just isn’t something that he’s willing to give, nor should it be.
That said, I’m a bit apprehensive as to who’s going to take over the ship. GDT has agreed to take the next 6 months or so to finish the screenplays with Peter Jackson, Phillipa Boyens, and Fran Walsh, for which I’m grateful. That said, the future of the project seems to be doubt. From the start, I’ve always thought that Peter Jackson should be the one to do it, which isn’t exactly the most original thought, although it’s one that I still believe makes the most sense. He’s the single most experienced filmmaker in the world when it comes to how to make a movie in Middle-Earth. When he made it clear that he wasn’t interested in directing these films and GDT was announced as the primary creative wunderkind behind them, I was pleased. Sure, he wasn’t my first choice, but if Jackson wasn’t up for it, the guy who brought the terrifyingly wonderful world of Pan’s Labyrinth to life was the next best thing. Now, I can only hope that Peter Jackson decides to take the reigns himself. I’m not optimistic, but I’ll hope against hope that it happens until it’s set in stone that it’ll be someone else. If things aren’t resolved soon, I think we might be looking at the release dates being pushed back even further.
- Is it just me, or has Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland made the quietest billion dollars a film’s ever made? Think about it. When Titanic, any of the Lord of the Rings films, The Dark Knight, or Avatar were headed for 9 zeroes, it was blatantly obvious that they were on track for big money, right? Usually, these types of movies have multiple weekends at #1, people won’t shut up about them, and folks go back to the theater time and time again for repeat viewings. Now, Alice in Wonderland did spend 3 weeks in the top spot, but last week when someone said, “did you know that Alice in Wonderland hit a billion dollars?” it just seemed like it wasn’t possible. I liked the movie well enough, even though I thought that the fairly standard fantasy action movie of the last 20 minutes or so didn’t fit with the wonderfully atmospheric first two acts.
I may not the guru of all things moviemoneymagic, but the fifth highest-grossing film of all time? Really? How did this happen?