Before he made headlines by returning to direct the upcoming X-Men movie X-Men: Days of Future Past, most of the attention on director Bryan Singer was due to Jack the Giant Slayer (formerly titled Jack the Giant Killer), his re-imagining of the “Jack and the Beanstalk” fairy tale as a fantasy epic.

Well, after nearly a year-long delay in release, it’s easy to see how Jack the Giant Slayer could’ve gotten lost in the shuffle. But a new trailer is here to remind us that it is indeed on the way in 2013.

It’s clear to see that Singer hopes for the film to be an epic adventure tale – in the vein of Disney’s live-action films like Pirates of the Caribbean or The Sorcerer’s Apprentice – but really, it looks like the film is more on the level of, say, Clash of Titans. While most of the footage looks fine enough – and there are indeed some creative sequences that incorporate the concept of the giants well, there are also some noticeable issues.

The biggest of all (pun intended) is the giants themselves. They do not look great. They look like something out of Clash of the Titans. And in an era of film where actors like Andy Serkis are putting on award-worthy motion-capture performances and giving life to indelible movie characters, hearing celebrity voices coming out of unconvincing CGI characters kind of deadens the whole experience.

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The cast is not much of a sell, either. Star Nicholas Hoult was charming enough as Beast in X-Men: First Class, but after watching the trailer it’s questionable whether he has the leading man charisma to carry an entire movie. Eleanor Tomlinson is equally uncertain as a leading lady – and Ewan McGregor’s Elmont character looks like he will not be able to achieve the same kind of eccentric charm that Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow did.

At this point, it doesn’t look like Jack the Giant Slayer is going to be a quality entry in Singer’s filmography (judging by the merits of this trailer). And if that proves true, it will inevitably lead to doubts about X-Men: Days of Future Past – and questions about whether Matthew Vaughn leaving the project was worse than originally thought.

There is (inevitably) an audience who will be compelled by what they see in this JTGK trailer – and the early March release dates gives the movie a chance to capitalize on the slow spring box office, where films like The Hunger Games have cleaned up in recent years.

Jack the Giant Slayer will be in theaters on March 1, 2013.

Source: Catch the HD version over at iTunes