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October 27, 2005

Today Ubisoft announced that Peter Jackson's King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie, based on Universal Pictures' December 14 release, King Kong, from three-time Academy Award® winner Peter Jackson (The Lord of the Rings trilogy), has officially gone "Gold" on the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, Xbox® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, Nintendo GameCubeTM system and Windows® PC. The title will launch in North America November 22 at the manufacturer's suggested retail price of $49.99 and is rated "T" for Teen.

"Ubisoft is extremely excited to reach this milestone in collaborating with Peter Jackson, Wingnut Films and Universal Studios Consumer Products Group," said Yves Guillemot, president and chief executive officer of Ubisoft. "The response among the media, core gamers and the mass-market audience has been tremendous and we can't wait to launch Ubisoft's most impressive and successful game of 2005 – Peter Jackson's King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie."

While the Xbox 360TM video game and entertainment system from Microsoft version of Peter Jackson's King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie is slated to go "Gold" the first week in November, it too will launch on November 22, 2005, alongside its console counterparts and the Game Boy® Advance title Kong The 8th Wonder of the WorldTM. PSPTM (PlayStation®Portable) system and Nintendo DSTM versions of Peter Jackson's King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie will launch soon thereafter.

The King Kong Collaboration:

Michel Ancel, creative director at Ubisoft, regarded as one of the top innovative minds in the video game industry, and his team at Ubisoft's Montpellier (France) studio are working with Peter Jackson and Wingnut Films to capture and create the King Kong movie dynamics through a unique video game experience.

"It's an absolute pleasure working with Ubisoft on the video game," said triple Academy Award® winner and King Kong director Peter Jackson. "Being able to collaborate closely together from day one is of utmost importance, which is why we've given Ubisoft unlimited access to every creative aspect of our film production. We really want the game and the film to be part of the same universe."

"We're amazed by Peter Jackson's creativity and what he brings to the project," said Michel Ancel, creative director at Ubisoft. "Peter Jackson's King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie is a creation that closely follows the storyline of the movie yet, as video games have the innate ability to do, will push the emotional tension of the film to even greater depths. Players will experience unprecedented dual game play within a movie-licensed game which alternates between Jack Driscoll in first-person and as King Kong in third-person. These contrasting perspectives will immerse players into the journey featuring epic battles, tough choices and a dynamic experience within the visually stunning environment of Skull Island."

For more information on Peter Jackson's King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie, please feel free to visit the official Web site at

Source: Google News
Good News For LOTR Actor Sean Bean (Boromir of Gondor)
Posted October 21, 2005
-- You see Sean Bean in a movie, your first thought is "bad guy."

"My first job, I played Tybalt in Romeo & Juliet, the ultimate villain," he says, chuckling. "I went on to play Romeo, which is less interesting.

"When I moved to movies, I got Patriot Games and GoldenEye, and the villains were really good characters to play."

The reason?

"I guess I'm just a bit frightening," he says, laughing through that gruff growl, the one polished by "years and years of these horrible, horrible Marlboros."

The heavy from National Treasure, the Fellowship member who cracked under the pressure and coveted the One Ring in The Lord of the Rings, "creates this expectation, whenever you see him," says his Flightplan co-star Jodie Foster.

Bean, 47, knows he has been typecast. Which is why we saw him in Flightplan, and why he's in North Country. He gets to defy expectations in both films.

"I get a lot of satisfaction from playing villains," he says. "But I'm trying to diversify. So I've had this nice little run away from that villainous streak. Flightplan, North Country and before that, Troy. That one was the key."

Sure, National Treasure made millions and launched a new action franchise. It also put Bean in that niche Hollywood has carved for him. He's that rare stage-trained Brit with the menace and the build to play a guy who looks as if he could kick any leading man's behind, be he Harrison Ford, Nicolas Cage or Pierce Brosnan.

But Troy gave Bean a chance to stand out in a movie with Brad Pitt, Orlando Bloom, Peter O'Toole and a slew of screen heavyweights. And he didn't play a baddie.

"It was an OK part, you know, Odysseus, the 'teller of the tale,' " Bean says. "But then we went back and recorded, at the last minute, that wonderful voiceover narration," he says. "And that transformed my part and the movie, I hope."

He remembers the narration's lines.

" 'Will strangers hear our names long after we are gone, and wonder who we were, how bravely we fought, how fiercely we loved?' "

That signaled to Hollywood that Bean could carry a different share of the load in the movies. In Britain and on cable in the U.S., he could be the heroic Napoleonic soldier, adventurer and lover, Sharpe, a role he played on British TV (and American cable and public TV) for five years.

But movie-land knows nothing of British TV. It took Troy to get Bean to North Country, a movie in which he plays a crippled Minnesota Iron Range miner named Kyle, stuck at home while his union-rep wife (Frances McDormand) brings home the money from the pit where he used to work.

"Where I'm from, Sheffield, in Yorkshire, is known for its steel," he says. "I spent a few weeks, before shooting, around to the iron mines in Minnesota, seeing how the ore was produced from these massive boulders turned into these small pellets of iron.

"I hung around bars, talked to people on the Iron Range, you get a feel for the place doing that. Like nowhere I've ever been.

"You can see Kyle molded by this part of Minnesota, and this industry that everyone there lives for. Sheffield is the same way, with the steel factories closing and the coal mines laying off. It's exactly the same sort of limited world for the people who live in this place where things are starting to fall apart. It's what they do, and they've lost it."

Up next, he plays a father trying to find his missing wife and daughter in the thriller Silent Hill. And then a return to Sharpe, in Sharpe's Challenge, "which takes me to India, and should be great fun. It's been years."

But if the right villain came along?

"A good bad guy is a joy to play," he says, laughing. "National Treasure made a lot of money, right? I like to think at least some of that was because it had a good villain!"

Source: Google News

October 27, 2005
LOTR Breaking News!!
Peter Jackson displeased with EA’s LOTR games
Peter Jackson, director of the Lord of the Rings series of films, has gone on the record as saying he “didn’t like working with EA” on the Lord of the Rings games. Apparently this was the reason behind his decision to switch developers from EA to Ubisoft for the game version of his upcoming King Kong film.

This brings a new angle to Jackson’s original public reasoning for switching to Ubisoft; that he liked their commercially unsuccessful, but critically acclaimed game Beyond Good and Evil. That’s in contrast with the commercial success of the LOTR games, despite the general consensus in the gaming press that the games were nothing too special. It looks as if Jackson was more concerned with the games being fun and true to the LOTR universe than he was for the games to rake in as much money as possible.

Could it be true? Has the games industry finally met a director concerned with creating quality games based on films, rather than treating them merely as a way of grabbing some extra cash on the back of a new movie release? If so, then this man was surely the right choice for producing the Halo movie.
Source: Google News
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