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Haven’t spoken too much about this lately, but it apears Disney’s Maleficent is surging ahead. It’s still slated for a May 2014 release with some buzzing about a July opening.

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The video link below is a portion of Angolina Jolie’s  interview at the Disney Expo.

http://teaser-trailer.com/maleficent-movie-logo/

maleficent title Release date: July 2, 2014 (USA)

 Director: Robert Stromberg

 Costume design: Anna Biedrzycka-Sheppard
 Production company: Walt Disney Pictures
 Screenplay: Paul Dini, Linda Woolverton
 See full cast at IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1587310/
I’m  still excited for this release, and I have to admit, I would love see Anjolina Jolie play Rizela in SHADOWS OF KINGS and the rest of the Dragon Rising saga. Who knows…hope springs eternal.

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imagesCAEL5ALOThe weekend of the Hobbit release has come and gone. Let me just come out of the gate by saying – I loved this film. Once again, Peter Jackson adds his magic touch to a Tolkien classic.  Was there creative licence? Of course. But the real treat for the die-hard Tolkien fans was the insertion of factoids from Tolkien’s Silmarillion. Like Lord of the Rings, Peter Jackson cannot stay away from this book, and why should he? Silmarillion is the “everything you need to know about Middle-earth” compendium. I’m currently rereading this book, and I always discover something new about Tolkien’s world. That aside, An Unexpected Journey was a nice homecoming for some of the characters we adored in the Lord of the Rings saga. Bilbo, Gandalf, Elrond, Galadriel, & Gollum return as well as cameo appearances from other personalities. We are also  introduced to Thorin’s company of Dwarves and given an extensive background of Ereborn, with incredible imagery included. All in all,  Peter Jackson embraced the spirit of the book, and there is no reason to doubt he won’t dazzle us further. Seeing Tolkien’s world on the big screen again reminds me of the root of inspiration that put Shadows of Kings onto paper. Tolkien is the master, and there is no one  capable of  putting his genius on film other than Peter Jackson.

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Conan the Barbarian (1982 film)

Conan the Barbarian (1982 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Before we heard, “I’ll be back,” there was “CROM.” Avid fantasy fans will be thrilled to know that Arnold Schwarzenegger will be revisiting the role of Conan. If you have seen the original films, they all end with Conan sitting upon his throne at an elder age – a glimpse into the future when he forged a kingdom with his own hand. The new film, Legend of Conan, will focus on this time period.

Chris Morgan, Producer commented, “This movie picks up Conan where Arnold is now in his life, and we will be able to use the fact that he has aged in this story,” Morgan said. “I love the property of ‘Conan’ so much that I wouldn’t touch it unless we came up with something worthy. We think this is a worthy successor to the original film. Think of this as Conan’s ‘Unforgiven.’

This is big news for the fantasy genre. Amongst a throng of fantasy fans, the day will not pass without hearing at least one line quoted from Conan the Barbarian.

“I always loved the Conan character and I’m honored to be asked to step into the role once again. I can’t wait to work with Universal and the great team of Fredrik Malmberg and Chris Morgan to develop the next step of this truly epic story.” –  Arnold Schwarzenegger

If you are late to the party, please snag your copy of Conan the Barbarian – or at least rent it.

The Legend of Conan is scheduled for a 2014 release.

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Thorin and Company

I’m certain most of you Tolkien fans are aware that the latest movie installment of Middle-Earth is fast approaching. I have compiled some photos and crew info from various sites for you to peruse and enjoy.

As I kneel before my statuette of J.R.R. Tolkien and burn incense to summon his ghost for insight…ok…I’m not really doing that, but I cannot help but be excited as the movie studio prepares The Hobbit. We will finally be able to witness Bilbo Baggins and his adventures with the dwarves, as well as being introduced  to a host of new characters, and re-acquainted with old friends.

Gandalf

Though our writing styles differ immensely, I will not deny the impact Tolkien has had on my life. If it were not for The Hobbit, I honestly do not believe my  Order  knights of the Secret Throne or the  Dragon Maidens within my novel, Shadows of Kings would have ever been put to paper. I attribute my zeal for writing from many authors and sources, but  it was Tolkien who first allowed my imagination to wander and traverse the breadth of Middle-Earth. For that reason alone, I shall pay homage to him by occasionally posting updates on events pertaining to the release.

At the bottom of this post are some of the links from which I’ve gathered my info.

Bilbo

Cheers,

Jack

The Cast So Far

Azog – Conan Stevens
Alfrid – Ryan Gage
Bard – Luke Evans
Balin – Ken Stott
Beorn – Mikael Persbrandt
Bifur – William Kircher
Bilbo Baggins – Martin Freeman
Bofur – James Nesbitt
Bombur – Steven Hunter
Dori – Mark Hadlow
Drogo Baggins – Ryan Cage
Dwalin – Graham McTavish
Elrond – Hugo Weaving
Fili – Dean O’Gorman
Frodo Baggins – Elijah Wood
Galadriel – Cate Blanchett
Gandalf – Sir Ian McKellen
Gloin – Peter Hambleton
Goblin King – Barry Humphries
Gollum – Andy Serkis
Kili – Aidan Turner
Legolas – Orlando Bloom
Lindir – Bret McKenzie
Lord Balin – Ken Stott
Master of Laketown – Stephen Fry
Necromancer – Benedict Cumberbatch
Nori – Jed Brophy
Oin – John Callen
Ori – Adam Brown
Radagast -Sylvester McCoy
Saruman – Sir Cristopher Lee
Smaug – Benedict Cumberbatch
Tauriel – Lilly Will
Thorin – Richard Armitage
Thrain – Mike Mizrahi (TBC)
Thranduil – Lee Pace
Thror – Jeffrey Thomas (TBC)

Links

http://the-hobbit-movie.com/

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0903624/

http://www.thehobbitblog.com/

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