Created in 1912, by Edgar Rice Burroughs, John Carter of Mars introduced readers to a world of epic, swashbuckling adventure and interplanetary romance. While not as numerous as the adventures of Burroughs’ other creation, Tarzan, Carter’s adventures fill twelve novels – plenty of material to fuel a movie series – if done right.
Disney has just released a teaser trailer for the movie and it looks to have the kind of scope that made the books so popular. John Carter is director Andrew Stanton’s [Finding Nemo, Wall-E] first live-action film and something of a personal dream project for him. Taylor Kitsch stars as Carter.
Check out the trailer, press release and first photos following the jump.
From Academy Award®–winning filmmaker Andrew Stanton comes “John Carter”—a sweeping action?adventure set on the mysterious and exotic planet of Barsoom (Mars). “John Carter” is based on a classic novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, whose highly imaginative adventures served as inspiration for many filmmakers, both past and present. The film tells the story of war?weary, former military captain John Carter (Taylor Kitsch), who is inexplicably transported to Mars where he becomes reluctantly embroiled in a conflict of epic proportions amongst the inhabitants of the planet, including Tars Tarkas (Willem Dafoe) and the captivating Princess Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins). In a world on the brink of collapse, Carter rediscovers his humanity when he realizes that the survival of Barsoom and its people rests in his hands.
Walt Disney Pictures presents the epic, action?adventure film “John Carter,” based on the Edgar Rice Burroughs classic, “A Princess of Mars,” the first novel in Burroughs Barsoom series.
2012 marks the 100th anniversary of Burroughs’ character John Carter, the original space hero featured in the series, who has thrilled generations with his adventures on Mars.
Over generations, John Carter has become a heroic paradigm across all forms of pop culture. From novels to comic books, artwork to animation, TV and now cinema, the character has inspired some of the most creative minds of the last century.
A fan of the Barsoom series of books since childhood, Academy Award®–winning director/writer Andrew Stanton explains what inspired him to bring “John Carter” to the big screen in his first foray into live action: “I stumbled across these books at the perfect age, I was about ten, and I just fell in love with the concept of a human finding himself on Mars, among amazing creatures in a strange new world. A stranger in a strange land. It was a very romantic aspect of adventure and science fiction. I always thought it would be cool to see this realized on the big screen.
“‘John Carter’ is a big epic adventure with romance and action and political intrigue,” continues Stanton. “Because the subject matter was written so long ago, it was also a bit of an origin of those kinds of stories—a comic book before there were comic books, an adventure story before that became a genre of its own.”
Andrew Stanton directed and co?wrote the screenplay for Disney/Pixar’s WALL?E, which earned the Academy Award® and Golden Globe® for Best Animated Feature (2008). Stanton was nominated for an Oscar® for the screenplay. He made his directorial debut with Disney/Pixar’s “Finding Nemo,” garnering an Academy Award–nomination for Best Original Screenplay and winning the Oscar for Best Animated Feature (2003). Stanton has worked as a screenwriter and/or executive producer on Disney/Pixar’s “Toy Story,” “A Bug’s Life” (which he also co?directed), “Toy Story 2,” “Monsters, Inc.,” “Ratatouille” and “Up.”
Willem Dafoe, who plays Tars Tarkas in the film, comments on working with Stanton, “I worked with Andrew on ‘Finding Nemo.’ And even though you’re doing a voice, he’s incredibly well researched and knows every shot, every process—he’s an incredible multitasker. So when he told me about this project and how it was going to be approached, I was very excited. Because he’s the kind of guy that can handle that. Without any cynicism about the process. He loves this stuff. He loves the story.”
The stellar ensemble cast is led by Taylor Kitsch (NBC’S “Friday Night Lights”, “X?Men Origins: Wolverine”) in the title role, Lynn Collins (“50 First Dates,” “X?Men Origins: Wolverine”) as the warrior princess Dejah Thoris and Oscar® nominee Willem Dafoe (“Spider?Man,” “Shadow of the Vampire”) as Martian inhabitant Tars Tarkas. The cast also includes Thomas Haden Church (“Sideways,” “Spider?Man 3”), Polly Walker ( “Clash of the Titans,” “Patriot Games”), Samantha Morton (“Elizabeth: The Golden Age,” “In America”), Mark Strong (“Sherlock Holmes,” “Body of Lies”), Ciaran Hinds (“Munich,” “There Will Be Blood”), British actor Dominic West (“300,” “Chicago”), James Purefoy (“Vanity Fair,” “Resident Evil”) and Bryan Cranston (“Breaking Bad”). Daryl Sabara (Disney’s “A Christmas Carol,” “Spy Kids”) takes the role of John Carter’s teenaged nephew, Edgar Rice Burroughs.
Producing “John Carter” are Jim Morris (“Wall?E,” “Ratatouille”), Colin Wilson (“Avatar,” “War of the Worlds”) and Lindsey Collins (“WALL?E”) and the book was adapted for the screen by Andrew Stanton & Mark Andrews and Pulitzer Prize–winning writer Michael Chabon.
The award?winning filmmaking team also includes Oscar®?nominated production designer Nathan Crowley (“Public Enemies,” “The Dark Knight,” “Batman Begins”); costume designer Mayes C. Rubeo (“Avatar,” “Apocalypto”); cinematographer Dan Mindel, ASC, BSC (“Star Trek,” “Mission Impossible III,” “Spy Game”); Eamonn Butler (“Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,” “10,000 BC”), Animation Supervisor; Peter Chiang (“The Reader,” “The Bourne Ultimatum”) and Sue Rowe (“Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time,” “Golden Compass”), Visual Effects Supervisors; and Eric Brevig (“Men in Black,” “Pearl Harbor,” “Signs”), Special Visual Consultant.
Photos courtesy of Disney