3D, The Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin, Uncategorized

This is an overdue post that keeps getting distracted by more recent news. Regardless of it being month old news , I believe it’s good news for those of us looking forward to see ”The Secret of The Unicorn” on the big screen. The screen just got a whole lot bigger.

Imax will be digitally re-mastering the upcoming movie up converting it to  the superior quality image and sound experience Imax as well as transforming it into Imax 3D.  I personally am a fan of Imax, but after doing some research online I discovered that not all share my opinion. I do not go to Imax often but the experiences I have had with it, especially in 3D, have been very good. What are the benefits and disadvantages of seeing the potential best film of 2011 on an IMAX screen?

Cons

Over the last few weeks I’ve read up on what people have to say about watching films in IMAX. There are a considerably large amount of complaints against it,and unfortunately, most are directed at films that were not originally shot using IMAX film.

The biggest complaint about watching the big IMAX screen is, ironically, that the screen is too big!  Nearly all viewers say it is much better to sit towards the back or in the dead center,or you could find yourself turning your head a lot. Don’t make the mistake of sitting in the front row. I always sit close to the back,near the middle of the row.

Another complaint is that IMAX 3D tires your eyes. Some will say this is true,other’s won’t. Personally I love the effect of things flying out from the screen and the illusion that things are closer or farther away than they really are. But the effect is not for everybody. Know your own limits on what kind of 3D is better for you. You may want to see it in good old fashioned 2D.  Again,seating is key: your eyes will do better if you aren’t watching the 3D from row number 3.

Some complain about the low quality of movies converted to IMAX that were shot on regular film,saying they are too blurry or grainy. For the most part people agree that the best IMAX movies are those that were MADE to be IMAX movies. I do not believe that Tintin will have this problem because of it’s digital nature. I’m no expert,but it should be much easier to upgrade a digital movie compared to upgrading a movie shot on film. An example of a digital film that was just released for IMAX is Disney’s new movie ”Tangled”. I have not seen this movie in IMAX so I have no idea what it’s like, and to be completely honest, I don’t plan to. The same process will be used on Pixar’s upcoming film ”Cars 2”

And then there is the age old problem that IMAX is expensive. Depending on where you go,it can be more than some would be willing to pay. But come on! We’ve been waiting forever for this movie! I’m willing to save a few dollars now to pay for the best experience possible. Now…is IMAX really the bext experience?

Pros

While some don’t like it, many will agree that it is very impressive to watch a movie on the IMAX screen.   The standard IMAX screen is  22 × 16.1 m,but can be larger! Rather than the screen being in the center of the wall, the screen practically IS the wall. This adds to the illusion that you are actually in the movie rather than just a mere witness of the events.  I think seeing the movie in Imax will pay off when it comes to watching those wide shots of the Sahara dessert or of the Unicorn sailing across the sea. It is truly an incredible experience to watch a movie on an IMAX screen.

The 3D makes the effect that much better. Imax has been offering an excellent 3D for years and continues to offer one of the best 3D experiences. Imax is known for making things look like they are popping out of the screen due to the screen’s huge size.

The IMAX sound experience culminates the effect. I have heard no complaints whatsoever about the incredible quality of the sound,the perfect synchronization with the image frame by frame,and the excellent positioning of the surround sound that especially helps make the 3D effect more believable. Keeping in mind that John Williams is doing the soundtrack for the Tintin Movie,I recommend watching the movie where you will be able to hear the experience best.

You still have time to decide how you will watch the movie. But best I can tell, watching the Secret of the Unicorn in IMAX Digital 3D will be more than worth it. I’ve been waiting for this movie for over 2 years now,and I am very excited that it will be available on one of the best experiences in the movie business,if not the best experience. I am constantly amazed at how well this movie is coming along. Tintin movie news just keeps getting better and better. I hope the fans will be pleased.

sources: http://www.imax.com/movies/m/the-adventures-of-tintin-the-secret-of-the-unicorn-an-imax-3d-experience/

image found on: http://www.giftsandfreeadvice.com/free_advice/imax-screen-size-by-theater-list-real-imax-and-fake-imax-screens/

Land of Black Gold, The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin Merchandise

Finally we have the first images of Tintin Movie merchandise. For months now we’ve wondered about possible toys and figures. This is our first glance.

Although you won’t find this on their site anymore, Toys News put up a post on their website with the following picture. The following is cut and pasted from the post. Take a GOOD look at this photo.

Meccano will create model replicas of three of the vehicles from the Tintin movie, due for release in the UK on October 26th 2011. The licence has been agreed for the UK, France and Benelux countries.

The famous comic book hero is about to come to life again in the first of a trilogy, ‘The Adventures of Tintin and the Secret of the Unicorn’. Directed by Steven Spielberg and produced by Peter Jackson, the film uses synthetic imaging and motion capture to replicate the look of the original artwork.

The film depicts Tintin’s (Jamie Bell) first encounter with Captain Haddock (Andy Serkis) and the discovery of a clue to the treasure of his ancestor Sir Francis Haddock. Daniel Craig plays Red Rackham, the pirate who attacks the Unicorn.

Meccano has paid close attention to the detail of the replica vehicles from the film, creating three models from its traditional metal nuts and bolts construction.

The models include a 4×4 vehicle (290 pieces); a Seaplane (340 pieces) and the Unicorn sailing ship (630 pieces). The models are due for release in the UK in September.

The replicas are suitable for children from eight years-old, but will equally appeal to older Tintin enthusiasts.

At first I could hardly believe these were real. Something about the whole thing just seemed wrong. All the images on the box are the same images shown in Empire magazine. Does Meccano really only have those images to go on? However it’s possible they will come up with a more complete cover later. But these may really be the finished products. I think we should consider that the picture of Tintin on the cover of Empire magazine months back was not a slightly unfinished picture just made for a magazine,but actually a one hundred percent finished product that will appear on a myriad of merchandise from now on. I don’t see them all using the same picture,but if Meccano stays with that cover,you can bet the official movie based toy line will use something like it.

And now to the question we are all wondering: what in the name of Khemed is the Thompson’s red jeep doing in this picture?  Just in case any of you out there don’t know all of the Tintin album’s vehicles by heart, the red jeep recreated by Meccano appeared in Tintin in The Land of Black Gold…and has NOTHING so far as we can tell to do with any of the stories revealed so far to be in the film. Remember when Thompson and Thomson drive into the city fast asleep with their hair growing in all different colors? Either yet another album is going to be mixed into the story somehow with The Crab with the Golden Claws, or only the jeep itself will be.

A third possibility would be that Meccano just wanted to create a third vehicle for it’s toy line and borrowed one from a different Tintin book. As much as I would love to see something like that happen in the future with other merchandise rather than companies limiting themselves to only what is seen in the film,I don’t find that likely here because the jeep really doesn’t have that prominent of a role. The moon rocket or the jet from flight 714 would make more sense. The red jeep must be somewhere in the film. Why? How? Only time will tell. Due to the similarities between Khemed and Morocco,and the picture on the box in the Sahara, I do think that for now we can assume it will show towards the beginning of the movie.

It surprises me that Meccano would include the jeep at all,even if I had already known it was in the film. Granted,it’s cool to see ANY Tintin vehicle taken to the toy shelves,but the red jeep from Tintin? I have a hard time seeing little kids begging and crying to their grandmothers to buy them ”Tintin’s jeep”.  If I were a kid it wouldn’t have me jumping off the walls in excitement if I saw it in a catalog.

Having said that,what kid WOULDN’T want a toy Unicorn to play with or a model of it to build after seeing the movie?  I see that selling very well.  The seaplane is also very nice. All three models look very much like the book’s drawings. I like the looks of all three. I may even buy them. If I don’t it will only be because I’m buying something else made off the movie I like better. And I believe there will be a lot of options to choose from. Out of all the Multimodels Meccano has for sale, NONE of them are versions of something out of a movie. Meccano could have picked to copy something from a racing movie or something like that,but they chose Tintin. This is significant. If the companies that rarely or never base their toys of movies are getting the rights to Tintin,what can we expect from those that almost stay in business solely making toys off of new movies? I am seriously hoping a Lego Tintin will come out. They have already done Indiana Jones,Star Wars,etc If Meccano can do Tintin,Lego could easily do their own version. I would just love to build a Lego Marlinspike Hall or Unicorn ship. Hey! If any of you readers have contacts at Lego,I’m telling you it would be a great idea! Seriously! It would sell!

This was not what I expected to find as our first photo of Tintin merchandise,but I guarantee it won’t be the last. I anxiously look forward to seeing what else comes out. It’s only a matter of time before you will be able to find your own pullback Unicorn in a Happy Meal.

Special thanks to Britto for this info! Keep up the great work you guys!

Sources: http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=pt-BR&langpair=pt|en&u=http://www.tintimportintim.com/2011/02/meccano-cria-linha-de-brinquedos-de.html

and the now empty http://www.toynews-online.biz/news/33487/Meccano-to-create-Tintin-line from which the above was pasted.

Andy Serkis, Editorial, Herge, Peter Jackson, Snowy, Steven Spielberg, The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn, Thomson & Thompson

Its been a week since the Empire Tintin Issue came out and I’ve had time to digest the images in it.

Below are my thoughts on those images. Note, the images, not the film itself. There is a big difference between a handful of stills and a full length film. Not to mention there is still a year to go and a lot can change. When the film is released I will judge it on its own merits and not pre-judge it.

However, several stills have been released by Spielberg and Co. so they are fair game. It has always been my intention with this blog to write what I think about the film. When I like something, I say so. When I dislike something, I will also say so. You are free to disagree with me and voice your own opinions in the comments in a polite manner fitting of Tintin fans.

The Good

Thompson.jpg

Scanned from Empire Magazine

This shot is the cream of the crop.

The texture of Silk’s beard, the look of the Twins, the detailed background, the composition of the shot, the lighting – they are all perfect.

The Not As Good But Still Good

Barnby.jpg

Scanned from Empire Magazine

Dark and moody, full of portent and potential action. The low camera angle and heavy shadows gives the shot a nice feeling of tension.

Haddock.jpg

From Empire’s online gallery

I wrote earlier that I didn’t like “the harsh light behind Haddock”. Interestingly, the print version of this image is much, much darker. This is down to the technological and production differences between VDU displays that emit light and printed matter that reflect light. In the print version, the back lighting looks less out of place and I much prefer the image even though it is harder to make out the details.

The Worrying

TintinOnBoat.jpg

From Empire’s online gallery

TintinHaddock-CloseUp.jpg

A close up of a scanned image from Empire. Click the image for full size

These two images are the only ones from the film that show the full body lengths of our main characters plus Snowy. In both of them, something looks off-key. Haddock in particular look unnatural in his pose in both. Maybe this is just Andy Serkis’s acting of a drunk and it will look OK in context.

Snowy also doesn’t look right. This may be because he is the only true character animation in the film whilst everyone else is motion-capture.

Given the quality of everything else, I willing to bet that in the film everything will look right but it does leave me with a Polar Express type worry.

The Bad

EmpireCover.jpg

I really don’t like this cover. The detail is exquisite but both Tintin and Snowy look really unnatural but without any of Herge’s charm. It would of been much better if they had only used actual images from the film. I suspect that this image is influencing my opinions and unduly increasing my worries about the two previous images.

Am I Excited? You Bet!

Despite all the quibbles and doubts I have about the images, all the signs are that will Spielberg & Jackson capture the look and the spirit of the books. Roll on October 2011!

Captain Haddock, Snowy, The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin, Tintin Movie Cast & Crew, Tintin Movie News, Tintin Movie Trailers

A very quick update as I’m away for a long weekend in couple minutes.

The Empire magazine December issue has Tintin on the front, the two stills we have already seen plus an image of Tintin, Haddock & co in the desert (from Crab with the Golden Claws), an image of the Thompsons with Silk (the thief from Unicorn) and Tintin greeting Barnaby (who I cannot place off the top of my head). Additionally there are several behind the scenes photos and six pages of articles.

First impressions of the new images pretty much my reaction to the first two – parts of them look great (the Thompsons in particular) but the figures of Tintin, Haddock and Snowy in the desert look off somehow. Their shape or stances is just a little too cartoony for my taste.

Once I’ve had some time to read and digest the images over the weekend I’ll post more detailed thoughts. In the meantime, if you spot these images on the web, post the links in the comments below so that fans around the world can also see them.

Back soon, have a great weekend.

Captain Haddock, Steven Spielberg, The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin, Tintin Movie News, Tintin Movie Trailers

The first two stills for Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, have been released.

TintinOnBoat.jpg

An iconic scene from The Crab with the Golden Claws


Haddock.jpg

Is this Tintin meeting Haddock for the first time?

Both images have been revealed by Empire Magazine and the December issue (available 4th November) will have more comments and news from the cast. Including this:

So what can we expect from the story? Here’s what Spielberg told us. “The first part of the film, which is the most mysterious part, certainly owes much to not only film noir but the whole German Brechtian theatre — some of our night scenes and our action scenes are very contrasty. But at the same time the movie is a hell of an adventure.”

The images follow a weekend-long teaser that slowly released close-ups of their cover. A full version of which is now available.

EmpireCover.jpg

This image was specially created for the magazine and is not from the film.

All images are copyright to someone, though who the hell knows because Empire doesn’t say. So please credit Empire magazine if you reproduce them.

Rumours, Snowy, The Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin, Tintin Movie News, Tintin Movie Trailers

In what can only be described as a teaser campaign, Empire magazine has tiny, close up fragments of the first images from the Tintin movie.

TintinMovieFirstImage.jpg

They seem to be releasing one a day. every few hours. The first five six are up and there are space for seven more. So we can expect the first full images on the 8th of November or there about Monday.

The best guess for what the images show:

  • ???
  • Snowy’s Fur
  • ???
  • Tintin’s Jumper
  • A Sock

What Does This Tell Us

Not a lot except that the movie will use incredibly real looking textures. Which suggests there will be nothing cartoony about this animation. I expect to see a world that has Herge’s distinctive style but with an amazing level of detail.

It looks like the long wait for the first images will be worth it.

EDIT…

Sharp eyed Proman has spotted that they are going up faster than one a day and that new objects are added to the background images. See comments for more details.

The Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin Merchandise, Tintin Movie News

A poster appeared on the Collider web site last week claiming to be the first poster for the Tintin Movie.There was a lot of speculation regarding its authenticity because of the way it had surfaced and because it just used Herge’s artwork.

However, Paramount have asked Collider to take down the poster, strongly suggesting it was the real thing.

Obviously, the poster is copyright and it would be wrong for us to show it, thought it is freely available around the web.

Just in case Paramount have taken those two links down by the time you read this, you can assemble it yourself. Just imagine this logo:

tintinmovielogo.jpg

Above an image by Herge, like this one:

tintin-fashion.jpg

And that’s about it.

Thanks Proman for spotting it originally, Britto for his observations and and Tom for noticing its disappearance.

The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn, Tintin Movie Cast & Crew, Tintin Movie News

Total Film’s web site has a feature entitled The Adventures Of Tintin: Everything We Know. It is a recap of how Spielberg acquired the rights, the problems of financing, the cast and working with Peter Jackson.

There is no new information but there is some confusing / wrong information.

On the script Total Film says “The first draft was knocked up by Coupling writer Stephen Moffat, only for him to turn his back on the project”. This is not entirely true – The script was complete but Moffat was prevented from working on the script for the second film because of the writers strike in America. By the time that finished, he had been offered a chance to fulfill a life long ambition to write for Dr Who.

See Moffat Walked Away From Tintin and Moffat Denies Quitting Tintin for our original coverage. Note also how Total Film report that Moffat walked away from $2 million yet the original newspaper reports it was £500,000. A great example of the guesswork and the constant inflation inherent in the game of chinese whispers that is reporting on Hollywood.

Total Film go on to give credit to Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish for the bulk of the script writing duties where as the original press release gives them equal credit and the info at the time suggested this was just minor changes to Moffat’s script. However Total Film go on to say:

“….have condensed events from three of Hergé’s stories (The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham’s Treasure) in order to introduce the major characters ….”

This is (probably) wrong.

Comments from Spielberg have previously put the first film as covering The Crab and events up to the end of Unicorn. Also Professor Calculus has never appeared on any cast list and Red Rackham’s Treasure would be unthinkable without Calculus and the shark submergible.