3-D Version of Beatles’ ‘Yellow Submarine’ To Shoot In April 2011, Says Star Cary Elwes

Disney announced in March that it plans to shut down Robert Zemeckis’ digital animation studio. Apparently “A Christmas Carol” — and its lackluster domestic box office showing — will be one of the studio’s swan songs (get excited for “Mars Needs Moms,” people!). Yet the closure, so it seems, will have no bearing on the status of “Yellow Submarine,” Zemeckis’ 3-D motion-capture reinvention of the classic Beatles cartoon.

“That will be going in April of next year, so we’re gearing up for that,” star Cary Elwes, who will be voicing the role of George Harrison, told MTV News at New York Comic Con, where he was promoting “Saw 3D.”

Elwes is not only set to voice Harrison but will slip on that rather flattering mo-cap outfit to play the role. “It’s more than a voice. We actually have to perform the roles,” he said. “If you know much about motion-capture, it’s not just voice-over work. You really have to perform the role.”

When I asked if Elwes would be going for a straight imitation of Harrison or if he had any room to strike out into new vocal territory, the actor declined to get specific. “I can’t really talk too much about it because I signed a waiver to the effect of not discussing it,” he said. “But I can tell you it’s going to be a really exciting film. I’m thrilled to be part of it.”

He did say, though, that Harrison’s family (the guitarist passed away in 2001) has been supportive of the project. “I know the family a little bit and they’re very happy about it. I think the film will be really extraordinary thanks to 3-D,” Elwes told us. “Today we’re able to reinvent the film in a way that will be very, very exciting.”