While The Avengers remains Disney's most ambitious tentpole film of 2012, the studio's biggest gamble is undoubtedly John Carter, a big-budget CGI/Live-action adaptation of the John Carter of Mars novels by Edgar Rice Burroughs.
With 2011 coming to a close, the studio has been seriously ramping up the marketing campaign for John Carter: in the last month alone we've gotten new posters, new banners, new photos and a full-length trailer to help build anticipation for the sci-fi adventure flick.
Check out the synopsis for John Carter below, followed by the latest TV spots:
'John Carter' tells the story of war-weary, former military captain John Carter (Taylor Kitsch), who is inexplicably transported to Mars where he becomes reluctantly embroiled in a conflict of epic proportions amongst the inhabitants of the planet, including Tars Tarkas (Willem Dafoe) and the captivating Princess Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins). In a world on the brink of collapse, Carter rediscovers his humanity when he realizes that the survival of [the Martian civilization] Barsoom and its people rests in his hands.
The film is being directed/written by Andrew Stanton, whose experience is mostly in animation, having written/directed Pixar films like Finding Nemo and WALL•E. The visual design of John Carter has been tweaked to be more kid-friendly than the bizarre and often sexualized imagery that is synonymous with Burroughs' source material; and while those visuals look suitable enough, it is somewhat curious that every trailer for this film has pretty much focused on the same scenes: Carter in the arena fighting for his life, and Carter staring down an oncoming army of martians.
Having been in production for several years, and with a budget that has steadily ballooned into the triple-digit millions, one would hope that John Carter is going to deliver a satisfying experience in terms of both spectacle and story. So far, it seems that we can only say for sure that Stanton has succeeded on one of those fronts.
John Carter will be in (2D & 3D) theaters on March 9, 2012