Since Warner Bros. is splitting Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows into two parts, this summer's film version of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince won't quite be the penultimate chapter of the hugely successful series when it hits theaters on July 17th.
Thus, Hollywood has bought itself a little time to find a successor to the Harry Potter juggernaut — but not much.
In the Los Angeles Times, Rachel Abramowitz (co-author of Is That a Gun in Your Pocket?: The Truth about Female Power in Hollywood) takes a look at the upcoming contenders for the title.
The leading candidate appears to be Tintin.
Sony and Paramount are jointly producing "The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn," a 3-D film directed by Steven Spielberg and produced by "Lord of the Rings" director Peter Jackson. The $200-million production is set to be one of the big event movies of 2011 and the first in a planned trilogy.
The Lone Ranger Despite the pedigree of the filmmakers, "Tintin" presents a difficult challenge for both studios: The comic is widely popular abroad but is largely unknown in the U.S.
But wait, there are more:
Sony and Paramount aren't the only Hollywood movie studios that are studying childhood classics and plotting strategy. Others are working on "Yogi Bear," "The Smurfs," "The Lone Ranger" (with Johnny Depp as Tonto) and a live-action adaptation by director M. Night Shyamalan of Nickelodeon's animated series "Avatar: The Last Airbender."
Fess up, readers — how excited are you for the day when the movieplex turns into Saturday morning TV?
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Chris Bolton co-created the all-ages webcomic Smash, which will soon be published by Candlewick Press, and created the comedy series Wage Slaves. His short story "The Red Room" was published in Portland Noir from Akashic Books.
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