Tuesday, February 8, 2011

James Cameron Taps Shawn Levy To Direct 'Fantastic Voyage'

Levy is best known for directing 'Night at the Museum' films.

Perhaps James Cameron got a sneak peek at "Real Steel" and really liked what he saw, because he's tapped Shawn Levy — the director behind that upcoming Hugh Jackman action flick, as well as the "Night at the Museum" films — to helm the 3-D adaptation of "Fantastic Voyage."

Deadline New York reports that Cameron, who is producing the reworking of the 1966 sci-fi flick, has hired Levy after considering a slew of directors with either more action-oriented experience or greater critical acclaim. We already knew Paul Greengrass and Louis Leterrier had been approached for the gig, but the new report adds Darren Aronofsky ("Black Swan"), Timur Bekmambetov ("Wanted") and Jonathan Mostow ("Surrogates") to the list of directors formerly being considered.

The new "Fantastic Voyage," which follows a team of scientists miniaturized and sent into a colleague's body to save his life, will be an almost entirely computer-generated creation. That makes Levy a rather unconventional choice for the high-profile Fox project. He's best known for his comedic fare, from work with Ben Stiller on two "Night at the Museum" films to last year's Tina Fey/ Steve Carrel laugher "Date Night." But Levy has branched out with "Real Steel," a futuristic action flick making liberal use of CG technology, and has always had a steady hand with broadly commercial productions. What's more, Levy has already reteamed with Jackman for a second action flick, this one to be scripted by "Lost" vet Carlton Cuse.

Last summer, Jon Landau, Cameron's longtime producing partner, explained to MTV News what they're looking for in a "Fantastic Voyage" director. "It's somebody to elevate the property," he said. "Why Jim's movies work — the ones that he directs — they have themes that are bigger than their genre. We want to do 'Fantastic Voyage' where it's about something and it's not just putting effects up on the screen."

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