After lots of negotiating, pulling out, and more negotiating, both Sony and Paramount are in talks to co-finance Steven Spielberg’s Tintin trilogy. Hurrah!
Universal backed out a few months ago, which sent Spielberg and Peter Jackson on an epic quest to get financing from another studio. Paramount eventually offered them $135 million, however the idea was to film Tintin in 3D with photorealistic performance-capture technology, so the pair held out for a better deal. After what I expect was a long uncomfortable silence, one of the parties suggested getting another studio in on the action, so along came Sony.
In the deal currently being negotiated, Paramount is planning to distribute in North America and some other English-speaking territories, while Sony would handle the foreign release.
If Universal didn’t back out then Spielberg would be busy filming the first instalment now, however the lack of financing has delayed production and has meant that lead actor, Thomas Sangster, can no longer play the role of Tintin, which sucks.
When all the deals are done Spielberg will most likely get to work on the first of three Tintin movies (firstly finding a new Tintin), with a planned release date of 2010. Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson will then take over for the second film, and then hopefully by 2012 they will have decided who will be directing the third film.