In this morning’s roundup of movie news ‘n’ notes from around the web, James Cameron mouths off, and George Lucas brings revisionist history to Blu-Ray.
Apparently, we can blame James Cameron for Guillermo del Toro’s decision not to direct “The Hobbit.” At least that’s what the “Avatar” director told James Wigneyin an interview to promote the special edition of his blockbuster film: "I was telling him for a long time to get out of that thing because there is only room for one captain on the ship. Instinctively I knew that Peter [Jackson] was going to take over and do the movie.” (Of course, the only reason Jackson might take over now is that del Toro has dropped out.) Cameron also floats another explanation for why his film lost at the Oscars to “The Hurt Locker”: Academy members wanted closure on the Iraq war, so they voted emotionally even though the choice “certainly didn't make a damn bit of sense to the rest of the world who were looking on in gape-faced astonishment." I think it doesn’t make a damn bit of sense for Cameron to continue talking about this, because it just makes him sound like a sore loser. (Sydney Herald Sun)
The subhead in The Guardian sums it up: “Leading child psychologist claims characters such as Iron Man are selling adolescent boys 'a narrow version of masculinity.’” The psychologist in question is Boston-based professor Sharon Lamb, who contrasts today’s sexist, aggressive superheroes (of which David Batty’s articleonly really supplies a single example) with noble past superheroes like Superman. Perhaps a different subhead would be apt: “Leading child psychologist claims criticizing characters such as Iron Man leads to more attention paid to child psychologists.” (The Guardian)
“Star Wars” is coming to Blu-Ray, George Lucas says. But not the originals – no, he’s talking about the “upgraded” versions that have been controversial since they were first shown in 1997. The beloved original versions, claims Lucas, would require expensive digital upgrades for Blu-Ray, although they were released as bonus discs with DVD versions of the upgrades in the mid 2005. Dave Itzkoff gets the news from Lucas, and “Star Wars” purists begin complaining immediately. (The New York Times)
On the other hand, some “Star Wars” fanatics still love Lucas. From the weekend’s “Star Wars Celebration V” convention in Florida, Laura Kelly has video from an hour-long interview between Jon Stewart and Lucas, who Stewart tells the rabid audience is “the reason all of you aren’t at a ‘Star Trek’ convention.” And they seem to agree. (Collider)
Scott Hettrick, a 3D booster who blogs about technology, returns from vacation, sees three 3D movies in 11 hours, and writes about it. His vedicts: “Step Up 3D” “uses 3D very effectively” though images are occasionally blurred; the use of 3D in “Cats & Dogs: The Return of Kitty Galore” is “serviceable at best,” and the movie is worth neither the 3D surcharge nor the price of a movie ticket to begin with; and “Despicable Me” offers “one of the best consistent employments of 3D in an animated movie.” He also loves “Coyote Falls,” an unheralded new 3D Road Runner cartoon that precedes “Cats & Dogs.” By the way, he thinks that to keep viewers from becoming ambivalent about the format, filmmakers need to use it to “push … 3D effects off the screen,” something to which a good number of directors and conversion specialists strenuously object. (Hollywood in HD)