March 2008

Wolfman gets physical

The remake of The Wolfman, starring Benicio Del Toro, is shaping up to be one of the better blockbusters of 2009. Producer Scott Stuber has been talking to Empire (via) and he clearly understands exactly why the classic monsters were so successful in tbe first place.

We really want to stick to the physical stuff. So much of what we’re trying to accomplish is that when Benicio is the wolf, you really know it’s Benicio Del Toro and you have the eyes and the emotion of what he is. That way you don’t disassociate your emotion and you realise that the person, Lawrence Talbot, who you’ve got to know in the daytime is still Lawrence Talbot at night. That way you’re empathetic towards him, you’re angry towards him, you feel for him. You wouldn’t get that with a completely CG creature who you disassociate from Benicio Del Toro. There will inevitably be some CG work to help with some of the transformation, but it’s a Rick Baker-centric film and that’s what we wanted from the get-go.

Theres a lot more, including the confirmation that the new version of the film will be set in the late 1880s to 1890 and that there are plans to resurrect other Universal monsters.

Wanna be a record breaker?

If youre under 19 and happen to be in Leeds tomorrow, head over to Millennium Square in the City Centre at 1:00pm where the Leeds Young Peoples Film Festival is attempting to break the Guinness World Record for the largest ever Zombie Gathering.

If youre over 19 and in the area, go along anyway and show the kids how its done.

Red Princess Blues: Animated and online

Red Princess Blues Animated: The Book of Violence is an animated short film prequel to Alex Ferrari’s upcoming feature film Red Princess Blues and provides some of the backstory of “Princess” - the main character in both films – as well as giving us an opportunity to see some of her world.

The story is told entirely from the perspective of “Princess” who, as a 12 year old little girl, finds herself in a strange country looking for her father. After being taken in by Nino, she discovers the Book of Violence and slowly begins her journey that one day will lead to vengeance.

Its a cracking film and one that is well worth seeing. But dont take my word for it because the film is available online. And here it is:

Theres also a trailer here and a review here.

Lying for Jesus

On Saturday I mentioned that popular science blogger, PZ Meyers had been expelled from a screening of the creationist propaganda film Expelled. The producers of the film were so concerned to ensure that Meyers was prevented from pointing out the dishonesty inherent in the film that they completely failed to notice that the person standing in the queue with Meyers was Richard Dawkins.

Dawkins has now posted his thoughts (via) on the film and the events surrounding it:

The whole tone of the film is whiny, paranoid pathetic really. The narrator is somebody called Ben Stein. I had not heard of him, but apparently he is well known to Americans, for it is hard to see why else he would have been chosen to front the film. He certainly cant have been chosen for his knowledge of science, nor his powers of logical reasoning, nor his box office appeal (heavens, no), and his speaking voice is an irritating, nasal drawl, innocent of charm and of consonants. I suppose that makes it a good voice for conveying the whingeing paranoia that I referred to, so maybe that was qualification enough.

The full review plus context is well worth reading and I urge you to check it out. Also, if you want a bit more background to the desperate damage limitation being engaged in by the dishonest makers of the film, swing by the collection of links on Greg Ladens Blog.

A pint? Thats nearly an armful!

Question: What do Tony Hancock and Jesus Christ have in common?
Answer: Theyre both rhesus positive


I actually did laugh out loud when I read this, and I cant wait to see the review.

The Atheist Apocalypse is Coming!

If you click on the image to the left, you will find a pretty good spoof of The Four Horsemen DVD, which is currently available from

The DVD is an unmoderated two hour conversation between Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens in which they discuss the tough questions about religion that face the world today, and propose new strategies for going forward.

All proceeds from the sale of this DVD will go to the Ayaan Hirsi Ali Security Trust.

Happy Easter

90 orbits around the Sun

As has been all over the news, Arthur C Clarke died yesterday. The Starwreck blog has found his final message online.

Dreamscape is coming

One of the better science fiction films I saw last year was Dreamscape, a fast-paced tale of deceit, betrayal, illusion and reality that strongly echoes the work of Philip K. Dick. The film also boasts some of the best digital landscapes Ive seen in a long time and really does show what can be achieved with some intelligent use of CGI.

The only real issue I had with the film is that, at 64 minutes, it was too short to fully do justice to its themes, characters and plots. Fortunately, there is a longer version on the way and work on the 90 minute version is drawing to a close.

Writer, director and star of the film recently dropped me an email to say that a new trailer should be up soon and mention this podcast interview which he did for Go check it out.