Trailer Tuesday: Rise of the Guardians
Nope, it isn't another movie about those Aussie-accented armoured owls.
DreamWorks Animation's next big CGI-animated release - the first one since that isn't a sequel since 2010's How to Train Your Dragon and Megamind - is literary adaptation Rise of the Guardians. Based on the rapidly expanding book series by William Joyce, Rise of the Guardians reimagines figures of folklore and legend (particularly those linked to childhood belief) as a disparate band of heroes. Utilising their amazing magical powers, these icons work together to defend the world's children against evil. A fairy tale-style spin on The Avengers or Justice League then...
In the first of what is sure to become a successful movie franchise, burly tattooed North (who we know as Santa Claus), Bunnymund (the Easter Bunny), the Sandman, the Tooth Fairy, and mischievous loner Jack Frost join forces to defeat Pitch (AKA the Boogeyman) - the embodiment of childhood terror and despair. These characters are voiced by Alec Baldwin (North), Hugh Jackman (Bunny), Isla Fisher (Tooth), Chris Pine (Frost) and Jude Law (Pitch) respectively.
Now I'm sure there are people out there who will complain about these fantastic childhood icons being given the buff, gruff re-imagining treatment. I however am not one of them. I was instantly sold on the film by the predominantly serious tone of the trailer (Well, that and the Naughty and Nice tats!). With no goofy slapstick in sight, a strong sense of magical wonder and reference to dark, high-stakes action in store for our heroes, you definitely feel the presence of executive producer Guillermo Del Toro - who also left his mark on DreamWorks Animation's theatrical releases of last year, Kung Fu Panda 2 and Puss in Boots. For the record, series author Joyce, himself a filmmaker, has also been heavily involved in this movie adaptation of his work.
As already mentioned, 2012 is the start of the Great Fairy Tale Film Deluge, and Rise of the Guardians looks like a worthwhile part of that flood. You have only to visit the film's official site to be wowed by the beautiful illustration and artistry that has evidently gone into its creation.
Personally, I'm also very excited at the prospect of watching a predominantly serious action adventure for the whole family... particularly since it which might even, daringly, veer into "too intense for littlies" territory.
Rise of the Guardians releases in 3D in the US on 21 November. The film's South African release date has yet to be set, but expect it sometime during the Christmas holidays.