just received a breathless phone call from Devin as he was leaving his half-day visit to the set of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (prick). Turns out he (and a select few online outlets) got to spend quite a bit of time chatting up Steven Spielberg. And it sounds like The Beard was eager to let slip a few details regarding the all motion-capture film series based on Herge’s Tintin comics, which he’ll be directing along with Peter Jackson and (maybe) a filmmaker to be named later.

Here be the scoopage:

  • Just in case you thought they were joking, these films will be entirely mo-cap.
  • Spielberg will shoot the first film (he didn’t reveal the title) in thirty days. Peter Jackson will join him on the soundstage for some of this, thus indicating that the film will be a highly collaborative venture. In fact, they duo might co-direct the third feature rather than track down another helmer for the final entry.
  • Spielberg stressed that he and Jackson will be on the "same soundstage". I don’t know if this means Spielberg will be heading down to New Zealand, or if Jackson will spending more time than usual in the States.
  • The f/x will be done exclusively by WETA. In other words, this will be Spielberg’s first film to not use ILM for visual f/x since… Raiders of the Lost Ark?
  • Spielberg and Jackson have a dedicated line through which they can share production art, storyboards and all that stuff whenever they like.

That’s all I’ve got for now. I’m sure Devin will flesh this out when he writes up his "experiential" dispatch later.

P.S. Spielberg also reiterated his faithfulness to film.  For a while, we thought he might shoot Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull on digital, but it is being shot on film.  According to Spielberg, he will never go digital.  Which means Tintin is being done on film?  Now I’m confused.