This is probably the most exciting movie news I’ve heard in a long time. How long? About thirty years.
I grew up reading Tintin in Vietnam, where the books had been translated into Vietnamese. Much to my chagrin, I had to leave them all (and everything else) behind when I left home. Luckily, they were easy to find in the States and I got to read them all over again in English. I’m such a fanatic that, besides the books, I also have Tintin glasses, mugs, T-shirts and calendars. I want to go to Belgium just to see all things Herge- and Tintin-related.
I’ve always thought the exotic adventures would make great movies. There was an animated series in the ’90s but Tintin’s voice was too high for me so I couldn’t really watch. Then, a few years ago, I heard Steven Spielberg was teaming up with Peter Jackson to produce and direct a trilogy of Tintin films.
I was so excited I almost wet myself. These are two of the best directors working today. I waited with bated breath to see who would be cast as the boy reporter and was happy to hear it was Thomas Sangster, a fine young actor probably best known as Liam Neeson’s son in Love Actually.
But then the budget issues and delays happened and Sangster had to bow out and I wondered if the projects would ever happen. Well, Variety reported yesterday that not only has the first movie, titled The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, started production in L.A. with Spielberg at the helm, Jamie Bell has inherited the role of Tintin and Daniel Craig will be the villainous pirate Red Rackham!
All my friends know I have a serious jones for Craig so his joining the franchise is almost more than I can bear. And I’ve liked Bell since Billy Elliott (and most recently in Defiance, with Craig) so I think he’s a good choice. At first, I felt he might be a little too tough but then I remembered Tintin got into quite a few fistfights and knows his way around a gun so perhaps not. The important thing is, Bell is a fine actor.
The awesomeness doesn’t stop there. Andy Serkis, who’s so talented he can play anyone or anything, had previously been announced as Captain Haddock and the hilarious duo of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead) will be the bumbling Thompson and Thomson, respectively. This is all very good but I’m also anxious to see who gets cast as Snowy!
Peter Jackson is set to direct the second movie while Guillermo Del Toro and James Cameron are rumored as possible candidates for the third if the first two make money. If I had to make up a dream list of directors, I couldn’t have come up with better ones. Pan’s Labyrinth was mind-blowing, as was Titanic. Let’s hope Spielberg’s and Jackson’s films do well enough so that we get that third installment. I know I’ll be doing my part in shelling out money at the box office.
Any other Tintin fans out there? How do you feel about Jamie Bell as Tintin and the rest of the cast?