Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I was hoping Akiva Goldsmith would write it

That headline may not be funny to all of you but: (A) I have a friend who has sworn a blood oath to destroy Crapmaster Akiva and (B) it's the dude who wrote Batman and Robin. At any rate, this has nothing to do with the destroyer of things that are good, this has to do with something you probably already thought was happening, but wasn't for sure, but now is for sure, which is a good thing. This is to say Fran Walsh, Peter Jackson, and Phillippa Boyens have all signed on to pen The Hobbit and it's potential sequel, according to Variety. What this means is that Guillermo Del Toro agreed to direct these films without knowing who would be writing them for sure. Wow. I know, Del Toro could have probably done a damn good job himself writing them but talk about putting yourself in front of the geek firing line. Taking on the only nerd franchise to win a Best Picture Oscar without a script is a demonstration that the front of Del Toro's pants need extra fabric. Plus, given the urinary Olympics that went on between Jackson and New Line over royalties, there was no guarantee that the Oscar winner wouldn't have slapped the taste out of the mouth of whoever came calling with a new contract. Still, all this news is good, and we get Hobbity goodness in 2011 and 2012 (provided the Mayans weren't right and we all survive).

More Heiney is always welcome

Robert Heinlein has a resume that includes what could be my favorite novel of all time (or at least, it's what I call my "at gunpoint" choice, you know, where someone says "pick your favorite book" and you say "I don't have just one" and they say "you have to pick" and you say "I don't know" and they say "you have to, you have a gun at your head" and you shoot them and stand over their corpse and say "I told you not to rush me...okay, 'Stranger in a Strange Land' are you happy now?" but they aren't happy, because they're dead). Somehow, in a day and age when smearing crumbs on a napkin can be optioned for a major motion picture (don't steal that idea, it's mine), Heiney has only had three of his works turned into movies (Starship Troopers, The Puppet Masters, and Destination Moon). Now, Alexander Proyas is adapting "The Unpleasant Profession of Jonathon Hoag," which is not a movie about a rectal thermometer tester, despite how it sounds. The book is about a guy who can't remember what he does during the day and the detectives who try to figure out what it is. That sort of sounds like my life, only instead of trying to remember what I do, I try to forget.

Finally, the computer-generated Shakespeare movie we've been waiting for

One day, I will have a whole blog that doesn't cite The Hollywood Reporter. This is not that day. THR broke the news that James McAvoy and Emily Blunt are voicing Gnomeo and Juliet, respectively, in a CGI-adaptation of the Shakespeare play (if I have to tell you which one, you can't possibly be reading this anyway) for Miramax and Elton John's Rocket Pictures (which, to this point, has only put out the four-hour documentary Check Out These Sparkling, Oversized Glasses). Kate Winslet was originally going to voice Juliet, but she bailed. Tim Rice was going to write original songs, but he bailed. So the film will now star the hot chick you barely remember and feature old Elton John songs. If the prospect of a movie with a story you've heard 10000 times featuring songs you've heard 1000000 times doesn't get your motor running, you better put in another quart of awesome oil.
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