His Dark changes

The Golden Compass Chris Weitz, director of the upcoming fantasy adventure THE GOLDEN COMPASS, the feature adaptation of the first of Phillip Pullman's spectacular HIS DARK MATERIALS trilogy, recently posted an open letter to fans at HisDarkMaterials.org informing everyone of changes being made to the ending of the film. He's apparently ending the film a little earlier than the book in order to segue better into the second film THE SUBTLE KNIFE, showing a surprising amount of confidence that the first film will be successful enough to prompt New Line to pump money into a second. Here's part of what he had to say:

I have decided, along with Scholastic and New Line and, most importantly, Philip Pullman, to shift the concluding three chapters of Book I of His Dark Materials to the beginning of the second film of our trilogy, The Subtle Knife.

To me, this provides the most promising conclusion to the first film and the best possible beginning to the second.

Read the rest of what he had to say HERE. In related news, Empire Online has learned that Kristin Scott Thomas will be voicing Stelmaria, the snow leopard daemon of Lord Asriel, protagonist Lyra Belacqua's enigmatic, seemingly ruthless uncle, and Kathy Bates will voice Hester, the daemon of Southern adventurer and companion of Lyra, Lee Scoresby. Both of these choices are exceptionally inspired, by the way.

In the film, young Lyra finds herself on a journey to save her friend Roger from the grips of the Magisterium and their savage experiments on orphans. Meeting armored bears, gyptians and witches along the way, she finds that she's involved in something far more powerful and profound, of which her guardian Mrs. Coulter and uncle, Lord Asriel, are also intimately involved. The film's set for release December 7th.

Extra Tidbit: Pullman found the name "Serafina Pekkala" (the role Eva Green plays) in a Finnish telephone directory.



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