• CHUD | 15 November 2007 |

    On 15th November 2007, Universal announced that filming of the Cirque Du Freak movie would begin in February 2008. They also announced the names of the first three actors cast in the movie. Here is one of the many media reports of that announcement.

    CHUD - 15/nov/2007

    At some point, every fantastical tome littering "Young Adult" shelves in bookstores all over the world will be in development at one studio or another, and I'll no longer have to spend twenty minutes browsing through reviews in order to ascertain whether each series is halfway original or, as is typically the case, hopelessly derivative.

    Judging from my brief research, Darren Shan's Cirque du Freak is either wondrously compelling or too poorly written to enjoy (the latter being par for the YA course). Regardless of quality, Universal snatched up the rights and handed the property off to Paul Weitz (the one who did In Good Company and American Dreamz). And he must've completed his adaptation of the first novel prior to the strike, 'cuz he'll commence shooting in February with John C. Reilly starring as Larten Crepsley, the vampire who runs the titular freak show.

    Crepsley mentors a young man named Darren who eventually gets turned into a half-vampire himself, which, according to the Variety synopsis, transforms him into "the catalyst in a battle between vampires and the rival Vampanese". Not mentioned in the Variety synopsis: the climactic battle in which the vampires put down the Vampanese resistance with holy water-infused napalm. It's strong, brutal stuff, but, like Apocalypse Now, the kids love it.

    Lauren Shuler Donner will produce the - if all goes according to plan - series of films with Weitz. Here's hoping Paul has an easier go of it on Cirque than Chris did on The Golden Compass.

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