'Tintin' is Pimpin' in First Photos

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Peter Jackson. Steven Spielberg. "Tintin."

How could this not be awesome?

Answer: of course it's awesome, silly, and Empire has the proof in the form of the first still images from the upcoming motion-capture CGI adaptation of the beloved series of graphic novels by Hergé.

Directed by the legendary Spileberg with a producing assist from Jackson and his gang of effects wizards at WETA, "The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn" is being brought to life in animated 3-D and Jackson, for one, couldn't be more excited.

"With live action you’re going to have actors pretending to be Captain Haddock and Tintin,” Jackson said. “You’d be casting people to look like them. It’s not really going to feel like the Tintin Hergé drew. It’s going to be somewhat different. With CGI we can bring Hergé’s world to life, keep the stylized caricatured faces, keep everything looking like Hergé’s artwork, but make it photo-real.”

And Spielberg echoes that excitement only, you know, in a slightly more Spielbergian way.

"The first part of the film, which is the most mysterious part, certainly owes much to not only film noir but the whole German Brechtian theatre — some of our night scenes and our action scenes are very contrasty. But at the same time the movie is a hell of an adventure.”

Sure.

But anyway, back to those photos, which -- Brechtian influences or not -- do look pretty cool. The first of them shows good ol' Captain Haddock (played by motion capture genius Andy Serkis, who brought Gollum to life for 'The Lord of the Rings") in mid-rant, while the second shows Haddock and Tintin sitting atop a capsized boat, awaiting rescue.

And it's a good thing those pictures look so cool, because Jackson has high hopes that this will be just the first of many Tintin movies to come.

"One of my favorites is "The Seven Crystal Balls," so that’s the one I’ve always been thinking of,” Jackson said. “I also really like the Eastern European ones, the Balkan ones like "King Ottoman’s Sceptre" and "The Calculus Affair." I think it’s a terrific setting for a thriller, the weird Balkan politics and the mysterious secret service agents. I think the Moon ones are terrific, but they’d be good for the third or fourth Tintin film, if we get that far. We want to keep his feet on the ground just a little bit longer.”

We think Hergé -- and Brecht -- would approve.