Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Why I love Peter Jackson: Reason #57

For those of you who visit Kong is King.Net on a regular basis, you may have noticed the momentous announcement regarding the King Kong film(s) that were revealed in this recent video diary entry.

On the 123rd day of shooting, which was this past Friday, Peter Jackson the director of King Kong, members of the cast and crew, designers at WETA and even a Universal executive were interviewed about a top secret undertaking that had been going on in New Zealand. They confessed to the fact that they have been secretly shooting two sequels consecutively to follow Kong. In a similar fashion to the way the Lord of the Rings trilogy was made, the film makers reveal that they have already begun massive pre-production on the sequel, titled The Son of Kong, and have begun to do some principal photography.

The video diary then goes on to show sketches, visual FX pre-vizualization sequences, models, and even sets. We hear different cast members including Jack Black and Tom Hanks talk about how they feel relieved that they can finally let the cat out of the bag. Other members of the creative staff, express their frustration at the amount of stress that has been placed on them.

Perhaps the best sound bite from the entire video is when the Universal executive, Eddie Egan says “We had some production money stashed away, uh, for the second Chronicle of Riddick, but we’re not producing that particular picture, so happily, we had a significant budget and we’re gonna make Son of Kong with it…immediately.”

Ha! I love the rib on Chronicle of Riddick. Its almost impossible at this point to believe that they had intended to make a trilogy out of that chracter and storyline. I mean Pitch Black was fun and everything, but come on.

The video diary features Richard Taylor, the head of WETA workshop, exhibiting fully realized creature molds for monsters that have been genetically engineered by Nazis. That’s right, Nazis. Apparently Son of Kong takes place around WWII, where Kong is enlisted by the allied forces to battle against the Nazis and their minions. Have you started to shake your head in disbelief yet?

The video clip later reveals plans for the third sequel The Return of Kong: Into the Wolf’s Lair.

That was last Friday. Yesterday, it cames out on various blogs, that it was all an elaborate April Fool’s Day hoax. They had even planted a red herring April Fool’s Day post, about one of their ships sinking. Genius. You gotta love Peter Jackson and his crew. Only they would go into such detail to create faux scripts, conceptual art, models, storyboards, and several convincing interviews for a practical joke. Jackson obviously has a sense of humor and is able to make fun of himself, and the kind of film making that he has become famous for.

Into the Wolf’s Lair…..Ha!

On a side note, if you watch the video diary, you will see just how much Jackson’s appearance has changed. He was always cute in a cuddly teddy bear sort of way, but now he’s lost the huge Harry Potter glasses, and about forty pounds. The result is disconcerting; he looks a bit hollowed out in the face and dare I say… hauntingly handsome? Its very strange.

Only 255 more days to go till Kong is released!


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