Articles

I'm that one asshole who grew out of Star Wars before even the prequels. I've no doubt that this new sequel trilogy will be good, I just personally do not care.

I've always been more of an Indiana Jones guy, so despite my better judgment I've been keeping my fingers crossed for a fifth and final Ford-Spielberg-Lucas outing, one that lets that "era" close out on a more solid note before the inevitable reboot with new folks before and behind the scenes. I don't care if Ford is in his 70s - Indy's mortality is what makes him more interesting than Bond and you can make it work, somehow.

Of course, there's the little matter of logistically getting the movie made, and on that score it seems that Ford is using what stroke he has to up the odds of Indiana Jones 5, which fans had basically accepted as a lost cause once Disney made it clear that its only priority is Star Wars (an Indiana Jones project would involve splitting profits with Paramount) and Lucas admitted to making no progress on a story. Here's the rumor, courtesy some guy via Jedi News:

some guy we're for some reason going to trust

Han Solo, Harrison Ford, is back and onboard for Episode Seven, but that's not all. As part of the deal, steps have been made which raise the possibility of Ford donning the famed Fedora hat of Indiana Jones once more.

A verbal agreement with Ford to play Han Solo once more has been in principle place since before the Disney deal. Over the course of this summer financial settlements were reached. The outstanding points that had dragged on but are now resolved are:

- Ford wanted to see the synopsis for his character's development over more than just Episode 7. He saw this in August and is happy with the story arc.
- Ford wanted a commitment to Indy 5. He did not get this as there is no plot line or script in place. What did happen was an agreement was made wherein an outline would be developed by the end of calendar year 2014, and if all parties can agree to it moving forward, efforts would be made to move on Indy 5 for release before the end of 2016.
- Disney wanted a multi film deal with Ford which transcends Episode 7. This has now been agreed.

We'll see what comes of that. Start chowing down on those grainfuls of salt in the meantime.

It seems that the Star Wars 1313 project won't be going completely to waste. If you'll remember, the project was a joint effort between LucasArts, Industrial Light and Magic, Skywalker Sound, and Lucas Animation. This joint effort between the subsidiaries apparently harkened back to the early days of Lucasfilm Games, when the charter of the studio was to make experimental, innovative, and technologically advanced video games. We'll likely never get to see the full result of this collaboration, but some of their innovation is going to be used in Hollywood films in the future.

The advanced real-time motion-capture capabilities pioneered for Star Wars 1313 enables the "production company to film an actor and then immediately capture and funnel those actions into a computer-generated character. The result is an instantaneous, photo-realistic computer-generated film that cuts down on production time".

See the technology in action in the video below:

Here's three Mojo tidbits for the new year:

Firstly, Did you miss the first public Double Fine Amnesia fortnight? If so, you still have a chance to redeem yourself for your misdeeds. Head to Double Fine's Amnesia Fortnight page where you can still buy the games in digital form for $10 USD. If that's not enough for you, for an extra $20 USD, you can now pre-order a collector's package that comes with a DVD with all five Amnesia Fortnight prototypes (plus the bonus prototypes Brazen, Happy Song, and Costume Quest), the 15-track Amnesia Fortnight 2012 Soundtrack, and a Blu-Ray disc of 2-Player Productions' Amnesia Fortnight documentary footage. If that's still not enough for you, for an extra $15 on top of that, you can have the package include a collector's edition cover featuring art of one of the five 2012 protoypes signed by the project leader for that prototype. If you're still not satisfied with these awesome options, feel free to pay $70 USD for a collector's package featuring covers with art from all six prototypes, all signed by each project leader.

Secondly, Telltale's finally openly talking about their upcoming announced projects, but it's not Fables or King's Quest. Instead, they're talking about The Walking Dead Season Two (which should surprise no one). In an interview with Polygon, Telltale CEO Dan Connors talks about the next season's pre-production story meetings. It seems the next season will feature at least some of the same characters as season one, since according to Mr. Connors:

"We're talking through different scenarios, though I don't think we've talked through one where we just start with a new set of characters."

Another interesting bit from that interview is that Telltale is open to the possibility of having the game characters meet the television show characters. It will be interesting to see if they can work that out, since it seems the television show and comic book are handled by two separate corporate entities (judging by the Terminal Reality developed shooter based on the television show that's coming out next month, and the fact that Telltale's game got no publicity from AMC, the network that produces the show).

Lastly, do you remember the Wallace & Gromit's Musical Marvels show at the BBC Proms last year? The one that Mojo covered because it was Ben Whitehead's (of Telltale's Wallace & Gromit's Grand Adventures) first official credited appearance as Wallace in plasticine form? Well, the good news is that if you missed it last year, you still have a chance to see it live since it's proved popular enough to now become a full touring show. It just premiered yesterday at The Plenary in Melbourne, Australia, and will be touring elsewhere later this year (with the short A Matter of Loaf and Death screened at each performance as a bonus). You can view a list of the full touring locations at the Wallace & Gromit's Musical Marvels website.

Graham Annable -- you know him from Grickle, Puzzle Agent, and much more -- is set to co-direct an animated/stop-motion movie. Yes, another LEC artist is hitting the big-time, after Purcell co-directed Pixar's Brave last year.

The movie, The Boxtrolls, is based on Alan Snow's Here Be Monsters and will feature a host of famous voice actors, including Ben Kingsley and Toni Collette. And the co-director? You might recognize his name from the cancelled Curse of Monkey Island movie: Tony Stacchi; he worked on the concept art for the film. What the hell is up with that coincidence, right?

For more, check out Hollywood Reporter. Then get appropriately excited.

Over the last four or five years, a number of Indiana Jones fans have been diligently gathering the material necessary to compile a deleted scenes page for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull over at TheRaider.net. The commendable efforts of this noble, tireless, obscenely attractive (full disclosure: I contributed) band of scalawags are finally brought to bear today recently.

While it's not like these scenes would have made for a dramatically better movie (that would have required going with the Darabont screenplay that Spielberg and Lucas disagreed on, in my opinion), they are still fascinating to read about. For example, were you aware that in early cuts of the film, Ray Winstone actually had lines of dialog, Indy had occasion to use his whip, and Mutt got bitten by a piranha? Read all about these and more cut sequences, complete with a lot of rare production stills, right here.

Not like you exactly needed a crystal ball to predict that it was going to eventually happen, but Disney has officially scheduled a release date for a fifth Pirates of the Caribbean picture.

Despite drafts being completed by series regular Terry Rossio (who in the case of the first four films wrote with his regular collaborator Ted Elliot), the movie recently got a new screenwriter: Jeff Nathanson, who wrote and co-wrote such scripts as Speed 2, the second and third Rush Hour films, Spielberg's Catch Me if You Can and The Terminal, the recent Tower Heist, and one of the ten billion unused incarnations of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (residue of which scored him a story credit). Other than that, the only thing known is Johnny Depp's participation.

What specious homages to the Monkey Island series will this next installment evince that promise to inspire a thread with at least five (5) posts in it? We'll just have to wait until July 10th, 2015.
Comments: 7 / Source: Deadline

One of the great things about being a natural contrarian is that I get all the Willow coverage to myself.

On March 12th, Lucasfilm and 20th Century Fox join forces to bring you "Willow: 25th Anniversary Edition" on Blu-ray. You probably recall Ron Howard's 1988 fantasy film as the thoroughly okay attempt by George Lucas to hatch a new franchise, this one more Tolkien than Flash Gordon. The grander plans fell through when the box office returns weren't good for much more than covering costs, but the movie remains a cult favorite, and is arguably a property Lucasfilm should have continued with a sequel anyway (a possibility which the great Warwick Davis to this day heartbreakingly refuses to rule out).

Here's the thing about Willow: it's got a whole bunch of intriguing deleted scenes that fans have only been able to experience via script pages and novelizations, and it looks like this release will finally bring some of them to light. Based on the trailer above, we'll get to see the fabled scene where Willow gets attacked by an animatronic shark-boy in a storm (its omission leaving Willow inexplicably wet at one point in the final cut) and more material depicting the frozen citizens of the kingdom of Tir Asleen. You probably don't know what the hell I'm talking about because I'm talking about Willow, so let's re-frame this news in a way that everyone can appreciate: skull-masked Pat Roach in high definition.

This is ridiculous.
So don't get your hopes up or anything. Still, it's always fun when Steve Purcell acknowledges the potential of his madcap creations to have a silver screen career, as he did in a new interview with VideoGamer.com. This would be one of those so-marginal-I-don't-feel-guilty-about-reprinting-all-of-it articles:

Sam and Max's "lack of a functioning moral compass might make them a long shot to drive a major studio production," but the cartoon cop duo "would make a great movie", creator Steve Purcell believes.

Talking to VideoGamer.com about his role in the development of recent Pixar tie-in Brave: The Video Game, Purcell said that "Sam & Max have proved themselves remarkably resilient to adaptation".

"They always manage to maintain the integrity of their lunacy no matter the medium. I think they would make a great movie."

Purcell debuted the characters in a comic book in the 1980s, before releasing classic PC point & click Sam & Max: Hit The Road in 1993. The pair later spawned a TV series, before Purcell moved to Pixar in the early noughties.

So given his big screen experience, why hasn't Purcell attempted to take Sam & Max to Hollywood?

"I've just tended to keep Sam & Max separate from my work at Pixar so there's never any confusion about it," he continued.

"I think Sam & Max's lack of a functioning moral compass might make them a long shot to drive a major studio production. Though I'm certainly not opposed to giving it a shot."

Pull the trigger, good sir!

If you live in the U.S., September will be a great month to be an Indy fan. To celebrate the series' release on Blu-ray next month, Indy is returning to the silver screen in two separate, limited engagement events.

The first: Raiders of the Lost Ark is coming to IMAX! Yes, you will be able to see the genre-defining classic on an impossibly large screen at participating theaters from 9/7-9/13. From what I'm told, the new print they've struck from the restoration looks incredible.

Second, select AMC theaters will be presenting a back-to-back, butt-punishing marathon of all four Indy movies on 9/15.

All of this, course, leads right into the Blu-ray release on 9/18. It's as though this was all scheduled with some sort of intent.

Several years back - I think it was somewhere around December 10th, 2005 - we spread the good word about a book called Droidmaker: George Lucas and the Digital Revolution, a detailed, acclaimed, behind-the-scenes look at various technology companies of the George Lucas empire. At the time, author Michael Rubin had put up the book's eighteenth chapter, a fascinating examination of the early days of Lucasfilm Games, up on his blog.

Now we receive word that the book has recently gotten a Kindle re-release. If you've ever had any interest in the genesis of companies like LucasArts, Pixar, and Industrial Light and Magic (or if, to put it a simpler way, you read Mojo), Rubin's insider look at the story behind them is by all accounts compelling stuff. Check out the new digital release or stick with the easier-to-cuddle analog version, if you prefer.

And maybe stay tuned for a review of Droidmaker from us sometime in the future. Who knows, crazier things have happened.

This and more revealed in this fine, career-encompassing interview with Steve Purcell by the fine chaps at Thunder Chunky.

The long-awaited and long-rumored release of the Indiana Jones movies in high definition is officially coming this fall.

The package will contain all four films and what seems will largely be recycled extras. Here's Paramount's official blurb:

The man with the hat is back – and looking better than ever! The world’s favorite globe-trotting archaeologist is, at long last, embarking on his greatest adventure – when “The Complete Indiana Jones Blu-ray Collection” comes to Blu-ray Disc from Lucasfilm Ltd. and Paramount Home Media Distribution. The Complete Indiana Jones Blu-ray Collection will be excavated in the fall of 2012 and will include all four of Indy’s thrilling adventures, using the highest possible high definition picture and audio presentation – along with a “best of” collection of documentaries, interviews, featurettes and a few new surprises.

"A few new surprises" makes it sound as though the volume of extras not already released will be minimal, but from what has been reported about the Raiders restoration, which has been screened to a privileged few, the movies themselves are gonna look like a million bucks, and that's the main thing.

Update by ???: The big question is, will the CGI jeep from the recent HDTV broadcasts be included? Will we have another jeepgate?

The Official Star Wars Blog reports that veteran English actor Ian Abercrombie, who voiced Chancellor Palpatine in the Star Wars: Clone Wars TV series (as well as LucasArts-published games adapted from it) passed away on January 26th. He was 77.

The blog post includes remembrances from some of the crew of The Clone Wars.

A peek at his filmography on IMDB reveals that you hardly have be a Clone Wars viewer to have enjoyed this man's work. Among a multitude of other roles, he played Mister Pitt, Elaine's needy millionaire boss on several episodes of Seinfeld, John Hammond's butler in The Lost World: Jurassic Park, and the bearded wise man who sent Bruce Campbell to fetch the necronomicon in Army of Darkness (along with the poorly heeded instructions to speak three magic words).
Red Tails, the first non-franchise Lucasfilm production since 1994, is now playing nationwide in the U.S. and Canada. The long-in-gestation passion project for George Lucas, who probably influenced the result beyond what his story and producer credits suggest, is inspired by the real life exploits of the Tuskegee Airmen during World War II.

The reviews so far have been mixed to negative, which means it's probably one of Lucas' better efforts of the last two decades.
The production of the movie version of Bone, based on the celebrated Jeff Smith comic saga that Telltale was adapting before they weren't, looks to finally be starting in earnest soon now that a director has been signed. It is Australian director P.J. Hogan, best known for the 2003 live action take on Peter Pan. Its screenwriter is Patrick Sean Smith, a fellow with a number of television credits who'll be making his first foray into features with this project.

As previously known, the animated film will be produced by Lin Pictures and Animal Logic (of Happy Feet fame), with Warner Bros. holding the comics' film rights. There are no details on whether or not the adaptation will consist of multiple films, which was discussed at one point, but this news would certainly suggest that things are moving forward.
A little over a month ago, PC Gamer - the Global Authority on PC Games and Now Television - dedicated an article from its weekly column Crapshoot to the often-forgotten TV adaptation of LucasArts classic Maniac Mansion. Like a lot of Crapshoot articles, it's worth a read; unlike a lot of Crapshoot articles, it doesn't really cover what it wants to, due to technical difficulties covered in the article. But a Crapshoot is still a Crapshoot, so check it out.
Comments: 2 / Source: PC Gamer
So how are you celebrating the 30th anniversary of Indiana Jones? 'Cause if you haven't made a poster-sized map pinpointing every artifact he's ever found - that's including the movies, games, novels and comic books - then you're clearly not this guy, who accomplished this feat with funding from the Adirondack ComicFest. This effort was also "authorized through Lucasfilm," if you wanted to know.

Fortunately, all of the artist's 255 prints - the proceeds of which went to American Disabled Veterans - have sold out, sparing you considerable temptation, but apparently there are going to be some on sale at the Adirondack ComicFest, should you be attending.

Whenever a new Pirates of the Caribbean movie comes out, it's customary for the community to share what they see as blatant plagiarism of the Monkey Island games on the part of the writers. While such observations almost assuredly amount to coincidence, there's no doubt that even the most casual Monkey Island fans can point to some downright uncanny "reminders" of favorite moments from Guybrush's exploits in this mega-grossing Disney franchise.

Well, last weekend's On Stranger Tides was surely no exception, and I've given everyone a head start on the ongoing compilation of Totally Not Ridiculous MI Connections in this forum thread. Come play along, and of course, spoilers ahoy!
Ian McShane is a bad man.

Comments: 5 / Source: Youtube
News Archive