From Beetlejuice to Batman to Ken, the Barbie dude

Michael Keaton, best remembered for his lead role in Tim Burton’s two Batman films, has reportedly joined the voice cast of Disney/Pixar’s forthcoming Toy Story 3, directed by Lee Unkrich (co-director of Toy Story 2). Keaton will the voice Ken, aka the Barbie dude, and I guess he’ll logically be a love interest for the Barbie character voiced by Disney regular Jodi Benson. Now I’ve seen both Toy Story films and for the life of me I can’t remember Barbie being in it…but I guess that’s not the issue is it?

Disney had already started work on the picture by itself back in 2004, based on a script by Jim Herzfeld (Meet The Parents). The movie would have centered on Andy’s toys traveling to Taiwan in order to rescue Buzz Lightyear, who’s facing destruction following a massive recall of the toy’s product line. The premise sounds like it could have been interesting, but also very (too?) similar to Toy Story 2, with a simple, cheap role reversal.

After the Disney/Pixar merger in 2006, that version of the movie was cancelled and Pixar took control over production. Now written by Andrew Stanton (Wall-E) and Michael Arndt (Little Miss Sunshine), the film will chronicle the lives of everyone’s favorite animated toys, now staying at a day-care center as their former owner Andy has gone to college and is “too old for toys”.

The original voice cast returns for the film, which is slated for release in 3D in the US on June 18th 2010, following re-releases of the first two movies in 3D.

Source

Harry Potter attacks Hari Puttar

In what can only be labeled a bitch move, Warner Bros has filed a lawsuit against Indian production company Mirchi Movies regarding the forthcoming film Hari Puttar: A Comedy Of Terrors. The reason? Warner feels the movie is taking advantage of the Harry Potter name. WB spokeswoman Deborah Lincoln tells The Hollywood Reporter:

“We have recently commenced proceedings against parties involved in the production and distribution of a movie entitled ‘Hari Puttar’. Warner Bros. values and protects intellectual property rights. However, it is our policy not to discuss publicly the details of any ongoing litigation.”

Mirchi CEO Munish Purii retorded:

We registered the ‘Hari Puttar’ title in 2005 and it’s unfortunate that Warner has chosen to file a case so close to our film’s release. In my opinion, I don’t think our title has any similarity or links with ‘Harry Potter.’

The irony here? Mr Purii is actually the one who’s right. From the looks of Hari Puttar‘s trailer, the movie has nothing to do with the world’s most famous teenage wizard and is actually eerily similar to the Home Alone franchise, a property owned by Twentieth Century-Fox. So if anyone should file a lawsuit against Hari Puttar, it ought to be Fox, a company currently tangled with Warner in a messy battle over the Watchmen rights (god, it’s like a vicious circle).

Article continues after the jump. Also, Hari Puttar trailer.

Continue reading