Tell us John... is there life on mars?
With the sci-fi blockbuster John Carter, which opens in theaters on Friday, Pixar wizard Andrew Stanton (who has two Best Animated Feature Oscars to his name, for Finding Nemo and Wall-E) makes the leap from directing cartoon characters to live-action heroes. It's a path that has been followed by a handful of filmmakers, some of whom made the transition seamlessly while others... well, didn't. We'll find out soon whether John Carter will be a one-off for Stanton (pictured here with the movie's star, Taylor Kitsch) or if he'll be adding more live-action features to his filmography. In the meantime, here's what happened to some of his predecessors:
Pitched somewhere between Star Wars, Conan the Barbarian, Stranger in a Strange Land, Gladiator and a live-action episode of the '80s He-Man cartoon series, the sci-fi blockbuster John Carter is an unwieldy, top-heavy production that really shouldn't work at all. And for the first 20 minutes, it doesn't. Not even a little bit.
Tongues wagged when Disney declined to peddle their upcoming cinematic wares at last month's Comic-Con: International in San Diego. But don't think for a second that the Mouse House was out of the self-promoting game. Far from it: They just opted to keep it all in the family by saving what would have been their Comic Con show reel for their own fan-friendly convention, the D23 Expo. Held this past weekend at Anaheim Convention Center, the event was a three-day celebration of all things Disney, promoting everything from Radio Disney and the Disney Channel to Disney.com and the various Disney theme parks. Not surprisingly, the most buzzed-about panels were the ones devoted to Disney's upcoming feature film slate, which includes such releases as Andrew Stanton's John Carter, Pixar's Brave and a little movie called The Avengers from the company's most recent acquisition, Marvel. Here are the bits of D23-related movie news we found to be the most supercalifragilisticexpialidocious: