Peter Jackson’s next project may or may not be a movie.
Ever since the conclusion of The Hobbit trilogy, Hollywood director Peter Jackson has been lying low. Word through the grapevine has it that he is working on a movie alongside Steven Spielberg and it’s not Tintin.
While Peter Jackson might be working with Spielberg on a secret movie, the Lord of the Rings director may have plans for his own independent project— and this one may, or may not, be a big screen blockbuster.
Considering Peter Jackson’s technology prowess and his history of experimenting with emerging technologies, his next project might introduce a newfangled something that the audience has never seen before.
A decade ago, during his stint with the Tolkien movies, Peter Jackson clinched a deal with another fantasy author. In 2006, the Lord of the Rings director purchased filming rights for computer programmer-turned writer Naomi Novik, who has penned the Temeraire fantasy/alternate history series. She completed her ninth and final novel League of Dragons in June.
When Peter Jackson clinched a deal with Naomi Novik, she had just completed three novels chronicling the Napoleon-era adventures of a heroic dragon named Temeraire and a swashbuckling ship captain who fight together to rescue Britain from a French invasion.
“Temeraire is a terrific meld of two genres that I particularly love—fantasy and historical epic. I can’t wait to see Napoleonic battles fought with a squadron of dragons. That’s what I go to the movies for,” Jackson told The Hollywood Reporter then.
According to a report by The Guardian, Peter Jackson was also planning to turn Temeraire into a computer game franchise. “As I was reading these books, I could see them coming to life in my mind’s eye. These are beautifully written novels, not only fresh, original and fast-paced, but full of wonderful characters with real heart.”
However, in 2009, Peter Jackson said that he is not sure if the Temeraire series, which comprises 9 books, would do justice as a series of full-length feature films or a high-budget mini TV series.
“I can’t see any degree of common sense in trying to mount them one at a time as feature films. To me the stories, having read the first ones, already work as this continuing, on-going saga, so I’m thinking “Is there a marketplace out there yet for a large budget mini-series?”
“I guess you’d think of things like HBO and you’d think of Band of Brothers and that sort of thing, but it’d be different than that. The market’s changing so much, TV networks are changing, so I’m thinking is there actually a market out there that’d give us the budget to do this properly and allow us to shoot this as a 6, 7 or 8 part series where we have freedom, we have great production values and are able to tackle it as the epic saga that it deserves,” said Peter Jackson.
Peter Jackson, who released the final part of Tolkien’s Hobbit trilogy in 2012, has been taking a break. In several interviews in the recent past, the Lord of the Rings director stated that he is working on something that would focus on stories surrounding New Zealand and that it might not be as big of a budget project like the The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit trilogy.
Irrespective of his next project, tech-savvy Peter Jackson is bound to invest heavily on user experience. The Lord of the Rings director is looking to combine virtual reality and augmented reality and come up with a blockbuster which could give the viewer a mixed reality experience.”I find mixed reality much more exciting than VR,” he told Wired. “Mixed reality doesn’t take you out of this world. Instead it adds elements to our real world,” said Peter Jackson, who is currently involved with a company called Magic Leap, which is developing an insanely hi-tech product that could change the way we view entertainment.
Interestingly, Steven Spielberg’s next movie Ready Player One is also powered by Magic leap.
[Photo by Ng Han Guan/AP Images]