Newsbites: The Greco-Roman edition!
1. Kevin Macdonald (Touching the Void, The Last King of Scotland) will start shooting The Eagle of the Ninth in August; the film concerns “a wounded Roman soldier and his loyal Celtic slave who try to solve the mystery of the Ninth Legion, a brigade of Roman soldiers that vanished after heading into the untamed Highlands of Scotland 15 years earlier.” — Variety
2. Coincidentally, Neil Marshall (The Descent, Doomsday) is already making his own movie about the Ninth Legion; it is called Centurion, and it is far enough into production that the filmmakers recently released a making-of video and a photo of former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko made up to look like “a savage-looking Pict warrior woman”. — Empire, Rotten Tomatoes
3. Bond girl Gemma Arterton has been cast as the demi-goddess Io in the upcoming remake of Clash of the Titans (1981). Meanwhile, Cinesite has been hired to provide some of the “major creature animation” — using computers, of course, rather than the stop-motion techniques that living legend Ray Harryhausen used on the original film. — Empire, VFXWorld
4. Sean Bean will play Zeus, Kevin McKidd will play Poseidon, Pierce Brosnan will play Chiron, Uma Thurman will play Medusa and Melina Kanakerides will play Athena in Percy Jackson, an adaptation of the best-selling children’s novel The Lightning Thief, which is set in the present day and concerns the half-human children of the gods. — Variety, Hollywood Reporter (x2)
5. The Gotham Group is developing a film based on Steven Sherrill’s novel The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break, which concerns “the mythical half-man, half-bull minotaur who was supposedly slain by Theseus 3,000 years ago and now lives a lonely life in a Wichita trailer park, making ends meet as a short-order cook in a rundown diner.” — Variety
State Of Play director Kevin Macdonald is going back to Roman times for his next film, signing up to direct The Eagle Of The Ninth.
The film finds a wounded Roman soldier and his loyal Celtic slave (Jamie Bell, below) who attempt to solve the mystery of the Ninth Legion.
Who are they? They would be a brigade of Roman soldiers who set off for the wild Scottish Highland hills 15 years before… And were never seen again.
Channing Tatum has been offered the role of the injured Roman, but he hasn’t yet decided if his accent’s up to the job. Sorry, that he’ll take the part.
If he signs, he’ll be off to shooting Hungary (doubling for Roman-occupied England) in August. Scotland, meanwhile, will be played by Scotland.
Seems England’s a little too built up to really serve Roman times.
And what is it with Romans, suddenly? Neil Marshall’s in production on Centurion and now this?