Although rumours have been abounding on the net about the upcoming Steven Spielberg directed and Peter Jackson produced Tintin, the guys over at AICN have managed to confirm via a "trusted source not at all involved in production" that one of those rumours is indeed true. That is that Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost are set to star as the characters Thomson and Thompson respectively. They will join already announced cast member Andy Serkis (who's playing Tintin's friend Captain Haddock).
There was news at one point of young Thomas Sangster playing the title role but he dropped out due to "scheduling conflicts" - although I can't see what other movie he would rather do than one directed by Steven Spielberg, one of the most famous and most loved directors out there, and produced by Peter Jackson, the man behind Lord of the Rings, one of the most successful fantasy franchises of all time.
No word as of yet who will play the lead character instead.
The film will be done with 3D-performance capture (presumably the same kind used for Jackson's King Kong, Lord of the Rings, etc.), and will be financed cooperatively by Sony and Paramount who will split the $135 million cost. This just reaffirms the current financial crisis when two huge production companies don't want to to take the financial risk alone on a Spielberg/Jackson helmed film. Even with the current state of financial affairs you'd think that would be sure bet to make trucksloads of cash.
The first film will be directed by Spielberg, with Jackson taking the reins for the second. The first film, due out next year, will be based on two of the Tintin books, "The Secret of the Unicorn," and, "Red Rackham's Treasure."
I have to be honest in saying I'm not all that familiar with the original Tintin stories. Obviously I've heard of him and know his stories come in various different mediums (cartoons, books etc) but other than the look of the character and some basic details I'm just not "in the know", as they say.
But nonetheless, I do think this is an interesting idea for a feature film, one that I think absolutely needed to be animated or digitally done in some way other than live-action (in this day and age a live-action version would look ridiculous, in my opinion). From the look of the character of Captain Haddock (shown above) Andy Serkis seems very suited for the role, but as far as the Thomson and Thompson characters go I just can't see Pegg and Frost playing them, even if it is through performance capture. Simply going by the look of the characters from the original stories/cartoons (also shown here) they don't even remotely resemble them. In saying that we've pretty much gotten to the stage where they can make anybody look like anybody and I'm sure, with this duo of director and producer, they'll make sure it works.
What do you make of this news; think Pegg and Frost will make a good fit?
The first Tintin movie is allegedly to start production in about a month's time.