Director Andy Fickman, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (who worked together on The Game Plan) and Carla Gugino from Disney’s upcoming Race to Witch Mountain sat down and answered a few questions (some appropriate, some not) yesterday about the movie for the San Diego Comic Con crowd.
Fickman — who was obviously thrilled to be part of a panel after 9 years of being a spectator — filled us in that it was sort of a re-imagining and not a sequel, although it does take place 30 years after the 1975 original film, Escape to Witch Mountain. Also, the actors who played the kids from the original movie — Kim Richards and Ike Eisenmann — will play a large part in this movie.
Fickman also talked a bit about the upcoming film’s mythology.
It’s a whole new mythology, it’s a whole new [type of] storytelling. This was a movie that when we were kids we loved the original movie. This is a whole new direction, we just wanted to tell a kick-ass thrill ride [story], steeped very much in the world of real, sort of UFO movies.
Fickman also said that Race will be a contemporary action adventure thrill ride movie with a UFO mythology.
Dwayne Johnson also made some sense of what Fickman meant by “real UFO movie,” saying that the scenarios with the creatures and the children, while fictional, are very realistic-type scenarios. Also, from these scenarios we get a lot of the comedy that the movie offers; no comedy like situational comedy, especially when it’s people in distress!
We find out that both Dwayne Johnson AND Carla Gugino will kick a lot of ass in this, which is always good. The “monsters” or whatever evilness is going on in this film is done by the same cats that did the Alien and the Predator (not sure if that actually means Alien and Predator or the movie AVP).
Gugino plays an astrophysicist and Johnson plays a Las Vegas cab driver still trying to find his path in life, when he picks up two siblings with magical powers. Also starring in the film — though not present at the panel — are AnnaSophia Robb (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Bridge to Terabithia) as Tia, Alexander Ludwig (The Seeker: The Dark is Rising) as Tony, as well as Tom Everett Scott, CiarÃ¡n Hinds, and Cheech Marin.
On a side note, I think people also realized that “The Rock” is a lot funnier than they were aware of by way of some good ol’ fashioned weed and pornography jokes at a Disney panel. Good stuff!
Last but not least, what took most people by surprise — the footage. It has all the ingredients of a fun, but wild ride with lots of Government involvement, explosions, chases, and creatures. Hopefully us regular folk will get a look sooner than later, and hopefully the movie is as fun as this tease seems to promise.
Race to Witch Mountain is set for a March 13, 2009 release.