By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com December 12, 2012 at 4:33PM
"The Adventures of TIntin," Steven Spielberg's performance-capture-animation adaptation of Herge's boy reporter comics character, wasn't quite taken to the hearts of American audiences last year. Reviews were lukewarm and, in a packed Christmas season, the film was crushed by the competition, hobbling to a fairly meagre $77 million domestically; not so great for a film that cost well north of $100 million.
But what you may not know is that the film was a huge hit internationally, taking in an additional $300 million, for a grand total closing in on $400 million, meaning it likely would have made a profit theatrically, so everything else from home video on was all gravy. As such, talk of a sequel -- which began almost as soon as the first film was announced -- doesn't seem so hasty after all, and, according to the film's director, may be going before cameras/sensors sooner than you think.
Since day one, the plan has been for Peter Jackson, who produced "The Adventures Of Tintin," to direct the second film in the planned trilogy with Spielberg taking over as producer. And speaking to Belgian site RYTBF (via Bleeding Cool) while doing press rounds for "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," Jackson apparently said that the plan is to get the performance capture done next year, with the film to be released in 2015. The script, by best-selling children's author Anthony Horowitz, has been in the works for a while; originally intended to adapt the story "Prisoners of the Sun," it was more recently rumored to involve Herge's story "The Calculus Affair," possibly incorporating other books as well.
But how feasible are the director's plans? With "The Hobbit" now being split into three films, with the third, "There And Back Again," landing in the summer of 2014, Jackson has a busy eighteen months ahead of him, not least with several months of reshoots to help bulk out the next two films taking place early next year. Does he really have the time or the energy to go into production on another film, even if it's one that would mostly be created in post-production?
It's not entirely unfeasible; in the last few years, Tim Burton was working simultaneously on "Dark Shadows" and "Frankenweenie." But neither film were quite as mammoth an endeavor as "The Hobbit," and taking on an animation at the same time would be a headache that, we imagine, most filmmakers would rather do without. We suppose some firm news will be along soon, but if Jackson's true to his word, we'll be seeing "The Adventures Of Tintin: [Insert Subtitle Here]" in theaters in 2015.