Peter Jackson and Neil Blomkamp Get Over Halo
Source: Variety

Nothing makes me happier than the death of Peter Jackson’s version of Halo. We need the Kiwi making more Heavenly Creatures and Lovely Bones (or, hell, more Forgotten Silver) instead of great big monster truck blockbusters. So I’m actually excited for more news of District 9, the film Jackson is producing for one-time Halo director Neil Blomkamp. It’ll be the guy’s first feature directing gig, and he co-wrote the script with Terri Tatchell.

WingNut Films will produce (obviously) and QED International will fully finance the deal; no one is talking budget or script details yet, but as this is a sci-fi project with Jackson and WETA on board, no one expects a six million dollar flick. Does that contradict my desire to see Jackson avoid blockbusters? Possibly, but I’ll ride this little wave of excitement until the story details pour in.

Blomkamp will shoot District 9 in South Africa.

David Fincher Might Be A Killer
Source: Variety

On Halloween night I went into the grocery store at about 4am and was sickened by the instant changeover from black and orange to red and green. Christmas already? But now that I know David Fincher might team with Paramount for a third time after The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, I’m gettin’ the festive spirit.

Doesn’t matter that I know nothing of the 1988 graphic novel The Killer, upon which the film will be based. The Publisher’s Weekly blurb on Amazon goes like this:

"A French hit man has long been at the top of his game, but the psychic weight of his crimes is slowly catching up with him, and, after he botches one job and attracts a policeman determined to bring him down, he may be breaking down just when he needs his skills the most."

Paramount acquired the property and will develop it for Fincher; Bradd Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment will produce with Alexandra Milchan, so feel free to make the entirely evident guess about the flick’s star. (Mark Harmon.) The Crow: City of Angels exec producer Allesandro Camon has been assigned to write the script. Think he can turn it in by Monday morning?

Natalie Portman Wants To Be Relevant
Source: Variety

As if to present the negative flipside to being mostly naked (and attached to theatrical prints!) for Wes Anderson, Natalie Portman has created her own serious movie-making shingle, Handsomecharlie Films, with  Participant Productions. First up is and adaptation of the Amos Oz memoir A Tale Of Love And Darkness, which Portman wants to direct. I know the book is ‘established’ and ‘award-winning’, but may I also suggest a new title? Something specific like A Movie About People.

Beyond that, Portman & Co. are into making "meaningful and artistically fulfilling films and are committed to the idea of stories leading to greater empathy and action for world issues." I nodded off partway through cutting and pasting that statement, but maybe her movies will be more Good Night, And Good Luck and less Crash. Unless she wants to update Deborah Kara Unger’s role in Cronenberg’s Crash in which case, I say go.

Not Even Scheherazade Could Come Up With Distinct Stories For These Posters
Source: Various

Bloody Disgusting has been blowing up the American Film Market all week. But while the coverage has been impressive, a lot of the actual news is just depressing. How’s that? Have a look at their collection of posters for upcoming horror films. I’d like to photoshop the titles out of all those posters and have people look at the collection with titles for thirty seconds, then see how many of the blanked out ones they could properly identify. I peg positive results at between fifteen and twenty percent.

And what’s the irony that the most striking image in the collection is for The Chemical Wedding? That’s the movie based on one of Iron Maiden singer Bruce Dickinson’s solo records, in case you’re some kind of pussy who can’t take the metal. Dickinson wrote the script, too. I hope all the dialogue is pitched in a shattering upper register, for old time’s sake.

Finally, there’s also an American poster for The Orphanage at Cinematical. I might not have liked the film very much, but everyone else seems to lose their panties over it, so it’s got to be better than this new crop of disease.