“As soon as I read my first of the books, Tintin never strayed far from my thoughts and heart. I knew
Tintin and I were destined for some kind of collaboration . . . and a journey of discovery.”
-- Steven Spielberg, Director
From Oscar® winning director Steven Spielberg and Oscar® winning producer Peter Jackson, two
of today’s most visionary storytellers, comes a 3D motion picture event: an epic, globe-hopping quest
that spans hidden mysteries, menacing criminals and ancient secrets -- and brings to dazzling, life the
classic escapades that have enthralled generation after generation with their one-of-a-kind mix of
action, humor and scintillating tale-spinning in The Adventures of Tintin.
Based on the internationally beloved and irrepressible characters created by Hergé, the story
follows the unquenchably curious young reporter Tintin (Jamie Bell) and his fiercely loyal dog Snowy as
they discover a model ship carrying an explosive secret. Drawn into a centuries-old mystery, Tintin finds
himself in the sightlines of Ivan Ivanovitch Sakharine (Daniel Craig), a diabolical villain who believes
Tintin has stolen a priceless treasure tied to dastardly pirate named Red Rackham. But with the help of
his dog Snowy, the salty, cantankerous Captain Haddock (Andy Serkis) and the bumbling detectives
Thompson & Thomson (Simon Pegg and Nick Frost), Tintin will travel half the world, outwitting and
outrunning his enemies in a breathless chase to find the final resting place of The Unicorn, a shipwreck
that may hold the key to vast fortune . . . and a ancient curse.
From the high seas to the sands of North African deserts, every new twist and turn sweeps
Tintin and his friends to escalating levels of thrills and peril, proving that when you dare to risk
everything, there’s no limit to what you can do.
Paramount Pictures and Columbia Pictures Present in association with Hemisphere Media
Capital and Amblin Entertainment, Wingnut Films, and Kennedy/Marshall Production of A Steven
Spielberg Film, The Adventures of Tintin. The film is directed by Academy Award® winner Steven
Spielberg from a screenplay by Steven Moffat and Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish based on “The
Adventures of Tintin” by Hergé. Produced by Steven Spielberg, Peter Jackson and Kathleen Kennedy,
with Ken Kamins, Hergé Estate’s Nick Rodwell and Stephane Sperry as executive producers. The co-
producers are Carolynne Cunningham and Jason McGatlin. Spielberg is joined by his Oscar®-winning
collaborators, editor Michael Kahn, A.C.E. and legendary composer John Williams.
The film’s acclaimed international ensemble is led by Jamie Bell (Billy Elliot) as Tintin, Andy
Serkis (The Lord of the Rings Trilogy) as Captain Haddock, Daniel Craig (Quantum of Solace) as Sakharine,
Nick Frost (Shaun of the Dead) and Simon Pegg (Star Trek) as Thomson & Thompson, Toby Jones (the
Harry Potter films) as Silk, Mackenzie Crook (Pirates of the Caribbean Trilogy) and Daniel Mays (The Bank
Job) as Tom and Allan, and Gad Elmaleh (The Valet) as Ben Salaad.
Weta Digital’s Oscar® winning visual effects team includes senior visual effects supervisor Joe Letteri,
visual effects supervisor Scott E. Anderson and animation supervisor Jamie Beard, along with art directors
Andrew Jones and Jeff Wisniewski.
The Adventures of Tintin will be released worldwide in RealD 3D and IMAX 3D, from Paramount
Pictures and Sony Pictures Entertainment.
A TIMELESS ADVENTURE MEETS TWO CONTEMPORARY MASTERS
Hergé, Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson
In a series of heart-stopping adventures around the globe, the graphic novel character Tintin
became a planetary sensation. The intrepid reporter with the funny coif and the courage to always do
the right thing in the most suspenseful situations has ever since been a worldwide hero to young
readers and a vivid inspiration to artists. The Tintin graphic novels, written and drawn by Georges Remi
under the pen name Hergé, have crossed diverse cultures, multiple generations and even war-torn
borders. A pop cultural phenomenon of lasting magnitude, they have been translated into more than 80
languages; and have sold more than 350 million copies . . . and counting.
Yet for all the far-flung places Tintin has traveled -- from Peru to Tibet to the moon –the one
place he has yet to venture is the modern movie screen. That changes with The Adventures of Tintin,
which not only brings the series to worldwide movie audiences for the first time but does so in an
inventive new way that pushes the creative envelope of 21st Century storytelling while staying true to
Hergé’s inimitable and timeless visual style.
The source of the series’ sustained power has always been the ways its scruffy, lovable
characters and its passport to exotic lands and courageous battles against wrongdoers have tied
together people who experienced his adventures with a common bond.
That’s what happened with Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson, who are brought together for
the first time as collaborators by their passion for Hergé’s tantalizing tales. Each came across Tintin at
entirely different times and in divergent ways. Yet their passion for the characters’ wide-open cinematic
possibilities is the same. Neither could resist the excitement of trying to fuse the unbridled fun of
Hergé’s drawings with state-of-the-art movie technology and inspired, emotion-rich performances to
create an original motion picture experience befitting of Tintin’s vast legacy.
“Tintin is an eager reporter who chases fragments of clues that suddenly blow up into these
amazing, globe-trotting adventures,” Spielberg describes. “What makes him so intriguing is his
relentless pursuit of the truth, although that always leads him down some treacherous paths. It often
seems he’s gotten himself into terrible trouble, but somehow, he finds a way out. From the first reading,
I knew that Tintin and I were destined for some kind of collaboration.”
Peter Jackson grew up with Tintin and had been influenced by his adventures. As a boy in New
Zealand, long before he began a filmmaking career that includes the most lauded fantasy trilogy in
movie history: The Lord of the Rings series, Jackson devoured each Tintin book he could get his hands
on, even struggling through the French editions.
“When you’re young, you can easily imagine yourself going on these adventures that Tintin gets
himself into,” Jackson notes. “They tap into that fundamental sense of adventure we all have.”
Both men saw the cinematic potential of Tintin embedded in its DNA. “We were all struck by
the fact that Hergé was telling stories through what were, in a sense, these beautiful storyboards that
were simple, clear and forceful in their narrative power,” says Spielberg’s long-time partner, Kathleen
Kennedy, who would ultimately pair up with Jackson to produce.
Spielberg first reached out to Hergé as early as 1983 – and found the Belgian artist deeply
enthusiastic about placing his clever character in the filmmaker’s hands. But tragically, Hergé passed
away before the two could meet. Later, his widow, Fanny Rodwell, fulfilled his wishes, granting the
rights to Spielberg.
“Hergé picked Steven as the only director he thought could do a film based on his work,” says
executive producer Stephane Sperry, who has been involved with the Tintin property for decades and a
fan for even longer. “And Steven has always been respectful of that.”
The filmmakers worked closely with Nick and Fanny Rodwell, consulting with the two careful
custodians of Hergé’s legacy and experts on all things Tintin. “The most important thing was to honor
Hergé and get as close to his very unique sense of palette and portraiture as possible. Every single panel
of his told a story in cinematic terms,” observes the director. “There was kinetic energy in every pose
and action, and it was almost as if he was trying to squeeze 24 frames into a single frame, and
succeeding. That was, I think, the genius of Hergé. Each of his stories had the essence of a movie – and
now we could be true to that.”
Spielberg was convinced right away that Jackson was the ideal partner. “Peter told me, ‘If you
were here right now, you would see over my shoulder the entire series of Hergé’s books, and I would
love to be a part of this,’” Spielberg recalls. “And thus began our process of finding a way to capture that
artistic style that so defines Hergé and Tintin, and bring it to the screen.”
Jackson couldn’t wait to tackle the task. “I was thrilled that Steven invited me onboard,” he says.
“Steven really is quite similar to the Tintin character,” Jackson comments. “He’s young at heart. He’s
very curious. He has a great love of adventure, and his sense of humor pretty much matches what
Hergé brought to Tintin. It’s a perfect match.”
In addition to serving as producer for the first film, Spielberg asked Jackson if he would direct
the second film in the series. Jackson agreed, and with the blessing and cooperation of Fanny and Nick
Rodwell, and the estate of Hergé, the adventure began. Fanny, who is now the President of the Hergé
Studios in Brussels, explains, “It was a special honor for us to be associated with these exceptional,
creative filmmakers who had our full confidence to bring Tintin to his biggest adventures on the biggest
screens. Hergé himself once said, ‘I consider my stories as movies.’ How prophetic!”
In close consultation with the Hergé Estate, the filmmakers enlisted screenwriters Steven Moffat
and the team of Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish to craft the adaptation. To introduce audiences to the
maximum breadth of Tintin and his various allies and enemies, the filmmakers decided to combine three
favorite Tintin books -- The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham’s
Treasure – into a singular plot that would keep modern moviegoers exhilarated.
The books were the screenwriters’ lodestar. “Hergé’s stories pull you in with vibrant colors and
adventures, but they are so much more – they’re filled with moral concepts, a sense of travel and
exoticism, while always introducing you to the grandness of the world and to scientific ideas. I think
that’s one of the reasons they’re so central to millions of children’s imaginations – and we wanted to
bring all that scope to the screenplay,” sums up Cornish.
They were also guided by the conceptual approach of Spielberg and Jackson who saw elements
of film noir, Hitchcockian suspense and special-effects thrillers deep inside Hergé’s playful line drawings
– and brought them to fore.
The result, Spielberg says is “part-mystery, part-detective story, as well as a pure unapologetic
adventure, all built around a tremendous story of friendship, loyalty and belief between Captain
Haddock and Tintin.”
DESIGNING THE WORLD OF TINTIN
The first Steps In Moving from Page to Screen
Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson share not only fertile imaginations but also a drive to
venture into frontier realms. From extra-terrestrials to Middle Earth, they have forged unforgettable
characters and worlds so breathtakingly original they could never have been experienced outside a
movie theatre. And yet, neither had ever applied their skills and artistry to a 3D animated motion
Spielberg and Jackson’s fealty was first and foremost to the Tintin legacy – and their shared
passion for Hergé’s transporting drawing style inspired the visual design into a fully animated CG film
from day one.
Early on, while the script was still being written, the art department and animation team were
set up, and collaborators on both sides of the Pacific began brainstorming ideas for the quirk-filled
characters and spicy settings for Tintin. One of the first big decisions they made, one that would inform
everything that followed, was to keep the period and texture of the story unmoored in time – set in a
kind of eternal noir universe, with dark shadows lurking around every corner.
“These stories could take place in the ‘30s, the ‘50s, the ‘80s or now,” notes Spielberg, “and
that’s part of their beauty that we wanted to preserve. What we didn’t want in our movie were cell
phones, television sets or modern automobiles. Our design cues came first from Hergé, and not from
any presumed period or setting.”
Adds Jackson: “We wanted the film to have the retro, edgy feel of a crime drama. That’s not
Tintin himself, but the world that Tintin lives in. There’s so much suspense in the story that we felt we
could incorporate people with trench coats, hats down in the rain, street lights casting shadows on the
wet pavement -- that’s the world we’ve created for our Tintin to live in.”
Next, the artists, designers and animators started envisioning what Hergé’s art would look like if
it existed in three-dimensional space. Despite having been drawn decades ago, the artwork lent itself
organically to this, says Richard Taylor, Weta Workshop’s co-owner and the film’s design and effects
supervisor. “When you look at Herge’s black pen drawings with watercolor washed in flat on the page,
all you have to do is close your eyes and begin to imagine the world of Tintin. You can't help but see it in
3D,” he muses.
It worked so well in part because Hergé had left behind the rules of pure reality when drawing
Tintin’s escapades in the first place. “The lines of what Hergé drew were not necessarily accurate,” says
senior visual effects supervisor Joe Letteri. “He wasn’t trying to draft exactly what he saw – and we
wanted to maintain those exaggerated qualities in the same way that he did. A big part of the design
study was to look at what he did, but then to imagine it from different points of view. And that allowed
us to start building up a vocabulary of how you would construct his worlds in a wholly 3D animated
To bring Hergé’s world alive so audiences can sense the very wind whipping through the virtual
air, the art department researched imagery and locations that might represent the various
environments where Tintin, Snowy and Haddock find themselves, from the boiling high seas of a stormy
ocean to the shifting pink sands of the Sahara Desert. A favorite of the designers was Hergé’s imaginary
city of Bagghar, Morocco, a seductive realm of Far East intrigue.
“We looked at many different styles of North African structures, patterns and archways,” says
conceptual designer Rebekah Tisch, “and were able to use fascinating shapes and colors to create
Bagghar. It left me with a real passion to go see the world – and I hope that people watching Tintin will
feel that same fusion of excitement and color.”
On an invitation from Fanny and Nick Rodwell of the Hergé Foundation, lead conceptual
designer Chris Guise traveled to Brussels to conduct close-up research into Tintin’s native locale, soaking
in the atmosphere that led to the creation of his apartment at 26 Labrador Road and the silhouette of
Captain Haddocks’s country home at Marlinspike Hall.
“Chris immersed himself completely in Hergé’s world and looked for his early inspirational
images, then came back just bubbling over with a fully rounded sense of place,” remarks Richard Taylor.
Digital model supervisor Marco Revelant further added to the process with his passion for
model ships, which are so key to the adventure. Revelant traveled to the Musée de la Marin in Paris to
visually dissect the ships on which Hergé based the Brilliant and The Unicorn. “Hergé’s designs are a bit
more elaborate yet reduced in size,” says Revelant. “We applied those same adjustments to our digital
Visual effects art director Kim Sinclair looked high and low for authentic vehicles, such as the
1937 Ford seen in the books that were then scanned into the computer to be re-created digitally.
“Hergé did some meticulous research into the vehicles, like the Ford and the sea plane, and we were
able to know the model and year, and even find the original manufacturer’s color charts,” he explains.
But the most critical design element of all, from the start, was the characters themselves. From
Haddock’s humor-spiked poses to the sky-ward texture of Tintin’s hair to the distinguishing shapes of
detectives Thompson and Thomson’s moustaches to the emotions crossing Snowy’s snout, every nuance
was debated, imagined, re-imagined and then fine-tuned during their intensive meetings.
“We looked at ever character from every angle to make sure they had the Hergé facsimile,”
Spielberg recounts. “We were never afraid to say, ‘Well, that particular mold of Captain Haddock’s face
doesn’t look like we’re on key with the Hergé art.’”
THE INTREPID AND THE TREACHEROUS
The Cast and Characters of The Adventures of Tintin
Behind each of the carefully crafted images is an inspired and skilled performance. A major part
of the lure for the actors chosen for the film was Hergé’s inimitable characters, each with their own
memorable quirks and foibles that had never been so deeply inhabited before. They include:
Tintin and Snowy
To play the iconic role of the intrepid, boyish reporter who has mirrored countless dreams of
adventure, the filmmakers chose Jamie Bell. “Jamie’s performance in Billy Elliot was astonishing to me,
not just the subtlety of his acting, but the tremendous physical performance he gave,” Spielberg notes.
“Peter and I both thought he had all the right qualities for Tintin.”
Growing up in England, Bell had been a Tintin fan since childhood. “There’s something about
Hergé’s art that leaves an imprint on you. It’s unforgettable,” he muses. But now, he had the chance to
imprint the character with tangible, human emotions and that thrilled him.
Screenwriter Joe Cornish says that Bell captures Tintin in the mold of the classic Spielberg
Everyman – an ordinary kid who finds how extraordinary he can be when life demands it. “To me, he’s
like a child’s idea of what it’s like to be a teenager,” Cornish says. “He can do amazing things, yet he
maintains an innocence and an insatiable curiosity about the world, a sense that he’s looking for a way
to do the right thing in any situation. You feel like anyone can aspire to be Tintin because all you need is
the knowledge, the interest and the pureness of heart that takes him through these adventures.”
For Bell, this aspirational quality was the way into the character, taking him far beyond the
forelock quiff in his hair that is his trademark. “When you see a young person who is so fearless and so
adventurous the way Tintin is, it’s everything you want to be yourself,” he says. “Tintin is a very driven
character, a very moral character, and I admire that. He will get to the bottom of things no matter what.
But sometimes he’s wrong and that’s when he has to trust in Snowy.”
Snowy, of course, is Tintin’s trusty terrier and sometimes savior. Cornish calls Snowy “almost an
embodiment of Tintin’s subconscious” and the trick was animating the character to be both that and
just a smart, funny little dog. Though Hergé often ascribed thought bubbles to Tintin’s canine friend,
Spielberg felt they could bring Snowy to life in a richly expressive way without that textual effect.
“I think sometimes Tintin makes a great sidekick to Snowy, rather than the other way around,”
Spielberg remarks of the much-loved character. “But we decided that if there’s any reality to Tintin at
all, it’s that the dog doesn’t talk.”
When Tintin buys a model of the lost ship The Unicorn at a local market, he finds within it a
secret that will land him on a hijacked sea freighter called the Karaboudjan, and, ultimately, introduce
him to an unlikely but lifelong friend: Captain Haddock, a crusty ocean veteran with seawater in his
veins and a bottle of whiskey never far away, who will become at once a foil for Tintin and his rough-
and-tumble partner in adventure, through thick and thin.
The Captain has long been a favorite of Tintin fans – the gritty contrast to Tintin’s idealism with
his endlessly colorful utterances (“Blistering barnacles!” “Thundering typhoons!”) and most of all, a
generous, die-hard friend to Tintin. “Haddock appears at first to be the last guy in the world you’d want
tagging along on a dangerous escapade,” says Jackson. “But Tintin sees something else in him. I think
Tintin sees the goodness in this man and understands who he can become.”
To play Haddock, Jackson suggested an actor he knew had what it would take to embody all the
dynamics of the role: Andy Serkis. “Knowing Andy as well as I did, I knew he’d be absolutely terrific, so
I arranged for him to meet Steven, who saw right away what he could bring to it,” he says.
Spielberg adds: “Andy and Jamie had fantastic chemistry as this iconic pairing of a youthful,
moral straight shooter and an old, reprobate sea captain. They’re complete opposites, yet Captain
Haddock brings many lessons to Tintin’s life, and Tintin really gives Haddock a chance to redeem
Serkis, who has been a fan of the comic since childhood, decided to give his character, whose
origins are open to interpretation, a Scottish brogue that sets the tone for his journey. “It seemed
appropriate that Haddock should have a kind of rawness and emotional availability,” Serkis explains.
“He’s a great seaman and has great potential as a human being, but he’s kind of lost in self-pity, and it is
Tintin, this boy, who helps him realize that he can connect with other people again.”
A Sakharine Villian, Thompson & Thomson and More…
Captain Haddock’s turn-about comes as he and Tintin try to evade the threat of the film’s irascible
villain: Ivan Ivanovitch Sakharine, who believes Tintin has unwittingly stolen the secret of The Unicorn and its
long-lost treasure. Taking on the nefarious role is Daniel Craig, best known to filmgoers in the role of the far
more noble British spy James Bond. Craig, who has garnered equal acclaim for his dramatic work in a wide
variety of films, previously collaborated with Spielberg in the political thriller Munich. But he had never taken
on a character quite like Sakharine before.
He relished the chance to cut loose with the mercurial bad-man. “I had a lot of fun with Sakharine,
and tried to make him as evil and twisted and strange as I possibly could,” he says.
Adding further antics to Tintin’s adventures are Thompson & Thomson—two detectives
distinguishable only by the shapes of their moustaches and the letter “p” in one of their names. To play
the pair of ham-handed investigators the filmmakers immediately had one common thought in mind:
the comic team of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, who have brought their irreverent sensibilities to such hit
films as Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz.
“Peter and I knew we wanted to cast a team as Thompson & Thomson,” Spielberg says. “Then
Peter suggested Simon and Nick, who are uniquely funny together and a wonderful addition to the
Pegg and Frost realized they could have a blast with the detective duo. “We have a certain kind
of synchronicity that fed into playing these two bumbling partners,” Pegg allows. “They’re in the great
tradition of silent movie stars like Laurel and Hardy and Charlie Chaplin. They’re fastidious but
ultimately faltering, and though they consider themselves to be the greatest detectives in the world,
they’re clearly the worst. So, we got to do a lot of silly stuff.”
They also had an opportunity to do what they do best: let their natural comic rapport unfold in
the moment. “The difficult thing as actors was thinking about what the Thom(p)sons would do in
between each panel,” Frost explains. “That’s where lots of characterization came in for us.”
Throughout the film, the Thompson & Thomson are in the throes of what is, for them, hot
pursuit of a pickpocket, Aristedes Silk, a role taken by Toby Jones, who played Dobby the House Elf in
the Harry Potter series. Silk, says Jones, is in it for love rather than evil. “He’s someone who enjoys the
art of pickpocketing because he loves wallets. There’s something very moving, in a way, about his
passion for pickpocketing. He’s the classic example of the Hergé idea that someone may look like a
terrible person, but not be one at all,” he explains.
Also figuring into the plot is Nestor, the loyal butler at the storied manse of Marlinspike Hall,
played by character actor Enn Reitel. “Like so many butlers, he knows where all the skeletons are
hidden, but also like all butlers, he has incredible loyalty to his master, which, at least for the moment, is
Sakharine,” says Reitel (who also plays the merchant who sells Tintin a dangerous ship model).
Rounding out the story’s cast of criminals are a pair of thugs, Allan and Tom, played by Daniel
Mays and Mackenzie Crook, and the wealthy merchant Ben Salaad, played by Moroccan-born actor Gad
Elmaleh. The popular French actor/comedian, whose father was a mime, relished the body language
Spielberg encouraged him to bring to the role. “It felt, to me, like the Comedia Dell’arte, the great
Italian stage comedies,” he says. “I grew up in this culture and love it, and Steven wanted me to express
Ben Salaad in this tradition. It was a gift.”
“Gad brought a great energy to the film,” Kathleen Kennedy says. “He’s treacherous but, in
keeping with Hergé’s take on things, funny and strangely loveable at the same time.”
Another fixture from the Tintin books -- the imperious, glass-shattering opera singer Bianca
Castafiore -- is played by Phantom of the Opera diva Kim Stengel. “”As we developed the script, we
weren’t deliberately trying to write her into the story,” explains Jackson. “It just happened that there
was a role that was perfect for her, so she ended up in the movie in a way that is quite delightful.”
Other Tintin characters who make appearances in the film include Tintin’s landlady Mrs. Finch
(Sonja Fortag); Lt. Delacourt (Tony Curran); and the only American character in the film, Barnaby, a
detective trying to warn Tintin of the danger he’s getting himself into, played by comic actor Joe Starr.
One common thread seemed to run throughout the international cast: a sheer love for the
books and a passion to be part of the film. “We all have something in our childhood that touches us,”
sums up Cary Elwes, who takes on the role of an attacking pilot. “For me, it was Tintin.”
IMAGINARY CHARACTERS, TRUE PERFORMANCES:
On The Performance Capture Stage
It took two intensive years of research, development, design, pre-production, screenwriting and
casting, but at last the time came for the actors, filmmakers and over 200 crew to converge at the
performance capture soundstages of Playa Vista, CA-based Giant Studios --- and enter the world of Hergé.
Here is where the major alchemy would take place, as the soulful, emotional performances of Jamie Bell, Andy
Serkis, Daniel Craig and the entire cast were recorded in the moment, and transmogrified into faithful
renderings of Hergé’s ink-and-watercolor stories.
Once on the stage, Spielberg was constantly innovating, matching the performance capture
technology to his storytelling instincts, and encouraging his team to think up novel solutions to the most
vexing visual problems. He and Jackson ended up driving a mini-revolution in the field with a revolutionary
system – dubbed the virtual camera -- that would allow the director a more traditional relationship with the
actors and in-the-moment command of the film, all while “seeing” an animated 3D world.
“I didn’t want to divest myself of those instinctive moments that occur on traditional sets, so we came
up with a new way to make it more seamless,” says Spielberg.
Entirely unlike a traditional soundstage set, the performance capture process unfolds on what’s called
a Volume—a clean, white-and-grey stage featuring up to 100 cameras mounted in a grid on the ceiling, able to
capture 360-degree coverage and render that data into three-dimensional space. On the Volume, all the
actors (and also the wire-framed props and set dressings) wear reflective dots that are picked up by the
camera in less than a 60th of a second, and interpreted into a 3D virtual moving picture.
In addition, another eight HD video cameras captured the raw performances as they unfolded. This
was later used as reference for the animators to make sure every grimace, smile, shiver and nuance of
emotion, from fear to friendship, came through as the actors’ performances were morphed into digital
Operating the virtual camera using a device slightly larger than a video game controller with a monitor
attached, Spielberg was able to walk through the Volume, watch the actors’ avatars interacting within the
film’s universe on the virtual camera’s monitor, and compose the shots he wanted in real time. The actors,
too, could see themselves in the movie’s world on monitors positioned throughout the studio, allowing them
“The ability to see the playback in real time was so important to both director and actors,” says Joe
Letteri. “We worked with Giant Studios very closely to develop that, and that collaboration was very
successful because they've understood everything has to be as realistic as possible in the moment.”
While the virtual camera could only offer the lower-res picture quality of a video game, it was more
than enough to ignite Spielberg’s creativity and the new technique clicked immediately for him, allowing the
director to paint with light and image in a way he never had before.
In addition, an earlier Weta breakthrough – the process known as “image-based facial performance
capture,” used to forge the compelling emotional realism of the Gollum in The Lord of the Rings and to create
the otherworldly Pandorans in James Cameron’s Avatar – was commandeered by Spielberg to add to the rich
characterizations of The Adventures of Tintin.
When using this system, the actors wear a football-type helmet rigged with a tiny camera aimed
directly at their faces – allowing a digital recording of the slightest, expressive movements of their eyes, lips
and facial muscles. For Spielberg this put the emphasis exactly where he wanted it: on the power of
emotionally true performances.
“Every single human being represented in Tintin is an actor giving a full performance -- an emotional
performance, a villainous performance – and that all shines through the digital makeup,” the director
comments. “We watched Hergé’s characters be reborn as living beings, expressing feelings and displaying
souls, and the effect was startling.”
The actor with the most performance capture experience of anyone in the world, Andy Serkis, became
the group leader, helping the other actors acclimate. For all his experience with the medium, Serkis was
inspired by the transformation he saw in Spielberg and Jackson as they worked together. “It was amazing to
see them both really bouncing off each other creatively,” he says. “They’re both so passionate about
filmmaking, and it sometimes seemed like this was the first film they’d ever made—they had that kind of
energy. They were coming up with ideas at such a quick rate, it was dizzying.”
The time-consuming process was also new to many of the actors. Each morning prior to shooting, the
actors would go through two “range of motion” scans, one for the face and one for the body. Once these
scans were completed, the cameras could identify the actors in the Volume and translate their actions into a
moving skeleton, so they could then be layered over with character “makeup” in post-production.
For Jamie Bell, the Volume felt more like a minimalist theater than a movie set, but that aspect, he
says, actually enhanced the work. “It’s an interesting way to work, because the movie set is in your head,” Bell
explains. “We were focused on giving these characters life and making them breathe. Then, in this 3D
animated world they’ve created, we could see all of our heart and soul and anger coming through. It was
Bell had to act in scenes with a wire frame Snowy, a stuffed Snowy for “stunts,” and an articulated
Snowy on wheels --- all operated by property master Brad Elliott who also brought with him years of
experience in puppetry at Jim Henson’s company that he turned into a performance.
“It made sense for the actors to have something to interact with,” Elliot explains, “and because Snowy
is such a big part of this movie, it was a real privilege for me to do Snowy.”
Throughout, Spielberg cultivated an atmosphere where anything could happen on the performance
capture stage. The entire cast was often all be in the Volume, performing stunts, acting on custom-made
gimbals to represent planes, cars or ships, and, with Spielberg and Jackson’s encouragement, improvising.
FROM VIRTUAL TO REALITY:
Finalizing The Full Film Experience in Post Production
Once the thrilling work with the actors in the Volume was completed, the animation team at Weta
began the 18-month process of refining, sculpting and detailing each of the film’s 1,240 shots, before putting
them through the final rendering process. It was here that filmmakers began playing with visual themes,
cinematic moods and tricky lighting effects in each individual scene, finalizing the look of the film.
Using the stylized world created by Hergé as a template, the artists an animators set-out to bring to
life the world of Tintin. “Everything Hergé created has a unique look and color,” recalls Joe Letteri. “His
original works already had an animated feel as if his drawings were just waiting to come to life.”
For animation supervisors Jamie Beard and Paul Story, it was the beginning of fully realizing an
animated world of Hergé’s characters. “The performance capture process is just the first step for us,” explains
Beard. Because Jamie Bell, Andy Serkis and all the other actors do not resemble their characters in a literal
sense, the animation teams lead by Beard and Story began the process of applying the performance captured
on stage to the digital character models built by the Weta team.
“What we have to do is look at the actor’s performance and ask, ‘How does that performance fit into
our character design,’ “ says Beard. “We basically start with a rough skeleton over a low-res geometry form of
what that character is and from there we basically go in a refine the body motion,” adds Story.
“In a traditional animated film, you would have the actors cast for the voice performance and
ultimately how they deliver the lines in the recording booth informs your choices of animation,” explains
The animation process for ‘Tintin’ relied heavily on performance capture for the characters’ final
render. “Having actors in the mix just gives us a quality of life that is hard to achieve any other way,”
continues Letteri. “An actor’s performance underlying all the animation really gives you continuity
throughout the film. In traditional animation, that is called ‘keeping the character on model.’ Here, we have
the actors who are the ones essentially keeping the character on model. That’s why we like to work with the
best actors possible when we’re creating a process like this as it gives us the freedom to expand on those
performances and to add a heightened sense of realism, drama, comedy or any other ideas that come up
along the way.”
Throughout the post-production process, many aspects of the characters were also refined, always
using additional video reference footage shot in the Volume to assure every moment of digital performance
reflected the actor’s emotional choices.
Finally, The Adventures of Tintin was rendered a second time to accommodate the digital 3-D process.
“Because Tintin was fully rendered in a computer, it made the three-dimensional aspect of the film relatively
easy to do,” Jackson remarks. “But it’s very striking with this film in particular. Just the thought of seeing
Tintin on the big screen in 3-D makes me feel like a kid again.”
Working in tandem with the team at Weta was longtime Spielberg collaborator and Academy Award®
winning editor Michael Kahn. Spielberg and Kahn have been known as being among the last filmmakers in
Hollywood to still edit on film -- a medium they both still love in a tactile way. Though Kahn has edited other
films digitally, The Adventures of Tintin marks the first time he and Spielberg edited on an Avid. Once Kahn
completed his cut of the film, Spielberg showed it to Jackson, and then, earlier in the post-production process
than usual, the cut was delivered to legendary maestro John Williams, who has scored all but one of
For the director, Williams’ music became the final, crucial element of The Adventures of Tintin, the last
deeply human touch that helped to combine all the human performances with the digital creations to create a
singular experience of adventure and friendship.
“John is the bonding agent that unifies all the disparate, eclectic elements of a movie, and with this
score, he captures the energy and spirit of Tintin as only he can,” Spielberg concludes.
THE LEGACY OF HERGÉ
In 1929, a 21 year-old Belgian illustrator created a new comic strip featuring a bold cub reporter
and his white Fox Terrier traveling in the Soviet Union. The comic, known as Tintin, was an immediate hit
with readers -- but the fledgling artist known as Hergé (a play on his given name, Georges Remi,
reversing the initials to RG) could not have foreseen the incredible, long-lived adventure his character
was about to embark upon.
Five decades and two dozen graphic novels later, Tintin has won millions and millions of hearts
of every age group in nearly every country around the world, becoming a fixture of childhood in Europe
and Asia, and establishing a cult following in the U.S. Each year, the books continue to find new fans,
most recently being translated into Hindi. The phenomenon has spawned toys and collectibles, fan
clubs and publications, as well as adaptations on the stage, radio and television – and now, at last, an
inventive motion picture that brings the characters to life as they have never been seen before.
What is the source of Tintin’s seemingly limitless appeal? For many it comes down to Hergé’s
original concoction of the simple with the complex: his relatable, recognizable characters with their
multi-faceted human foibles, his whirlwind escapades with their elements of intricate mystery, political
thrillers and sci-fi, and his drawing style that featured straightforward, line-drawn characters in lavishly
detailed, color-filled worlds that could spark every imagination.
Hergé famously said, “I couldn’t tell a story except in the form of a drawing” – and it was his
artwork that drew so many into Tintin’s world. But it was also the core of the character that appealed
across language, culture and time, as almost anyone, anywhere, could envision themselves as this young
man whose compass through all his wild travels are his friendships and desire to be on the side of good.
As time went on and Hergé published one highly anticipated Tintin book after another, the
artist’s expressive, uncluttered ligne claire style would influence a growing list pop artists such as Roy
Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol, the latter of whom created a portrait of Hergé at the artist’s request.
In 1983, Hergé passed away, leaving his 24th Tintin book (Tintin and the Alpha-Art) unfinished.
But it was clear that Tintin’s legacy would only grow and that he would continue to inspire and enchant
fans around the world.
With The Adventures of Tintin, the filmmakers hope a new generation will have the chance to
discover a world as full of inspiration as ever. Sums up Kathleen Kennedy: “For us, it’s gratifying that
first-time, casual and passionate Tintin lovers can all have an entirely new experience with the
characters and the story.”
ABOUT THE CAST
While still a teenager, JAMIE BELL shot to worldwide fame starring in the title role of Stephen
Daldry’s Billy Elliot. Among the many honors he received for the performance were the BAFTA Award for
Best Actor, and the British Independent Film Award for Best Newcomer.
The northern England native portrayed Charles Dickens’ memorable character Smike in
writer/director Douglas McGrath’s screen adaptation of Nicholas Nickleby, for which he and his
colleagues shared the National Board of Review Award for Best Acting by an Ensemble.
Mr. Bell’s subsequent films include David Gordon Green’s Undertow, opposite Dermot Mulroney and
Josh Lucas; Thomas Vinterberg’s Dear Wendy, opposite Alison Pill; Peter Jackson’s epic King Kong; and
Clint Eastwood’s acclaimed Flags of Our Fathers, in which he portrayed real-life WWII hero Ralph
Among his other movies are David Mackenzie’s Hallam Foe (a.k.a. Mister Foe), opposite Sophia
Myles, for which he earned a British Independent Film Award nomination, and a BAFTA (Scotland)
Award, for Best Actor; Arie Posin’s The Chumscrubber; Doug Liman’s Jumper, with Hayden Christensen;
and Edward Zwick’s Defiance, alongside Daniel Craig, Liev Schreiber, and Mia Wasikowska; Cary
Fukunaga’s Jane Eyre, alongside Wasikowska and Michael Fassbender; and Kevin Macdonald’s The
Eagle, opposite Channing Tatum.
He is currently at work on Carl Tibbetts’ The Retreat, starring opposite Cillian Murphy and
Thandie Newton; and Asger Leth’s Man on a Ledge, starring with Sam Worthington.
ANDY SERKIS (Captain Haddock) is an award-winning actor who has earned acclaim from both
critics and audiences for his work in a range of memorable roles. He gained legions of fans around the
globe for his performance as Gollum in the Academy Award®-winning The Lord of the Rings trilogy,
directed by Peter Jackson. Serkis won an Empire Award for his role, in addition to sharing in several
Outstanding Ensemble Cast Awards, including a Screen Actors Guild Award®. Reuniting with Jackson, he
played two roles in the director’s epic retelling of King Kong, taking performance capture to another
level as the title character of Kong, and also appearing as Lumpy, the ship’s cook.
Most recently, Serkis starred in Rise of the Apes, a prequel to the iconic film Planet of the Apes.
Set in present-day San Francisco, Apes deals with the aftermath of man's experiments with genetic
engineering that lead to the development of intelligence in apes and the onset of a war for supremacy.
His performance as “Caesar,” received critical acclaim from both journalists and audiences around the
world. Serkis also has co-starring roles in Death of a Superhero and Brieghton Rock, both of which will
be in theaters this fall.
Last year, Serkis received critical acclaim and accolades for his portrayal of punk-rock legend Ian
Dury in the film Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll for director Mat Whitecross. The role earned Serkis a BAFTA
nomination for Best Actor. He also played 19th century grave robber William Hare, opposite Simon
Pegg’s William Burke, in John Landis’ recent black comedy Burke & Hare.
On the small screen, Serkis appeared in the BBC miniseries Little Dorrit, based on Charles
Dickens’ classic tale, which garnered him a 2009 Emmy nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He also
starred in as Nobel Prize-winning physicist Albert Einstein in the BBC/HBO production of Einstein and
Serkis previously earned Golden Globe and BAFTA TV Award nominations for his performance as
Ian Brady in HBO’s Longford. He also garnered acclaim for the role of Bill Sikes in the PBS presentation
of Oliver Twist. British television audiences also know him for a wide range of roles in telefilms,
miniseries and series.
Serkis’s recent feature film credits include Christopher Nolan’s acclaimed drama The Prestige;
the comedy 13 Going on 30, with Jennifer Garner; and the indie films The Cottage, Extraordinary
Rendition and Sugarhouse. He also lent his voice to the animated feature Flushed Away. He earlier co-
starred in Michael Winterbottom’s 24 Hour Party People and Mike Leigh’s Topsy-Turvy. Serkis includes
among his additional film credits such independent releases as Deathwatch, The Escapist, Shiner,
Pandaemonium, The Jolly Boys’ Last Stand, Five Seconds to Spare, Sweety Barrett, Among Giants, Mojo,
Career Girls, Loop, Stella Does Tricks and The Near Room.
An accomplished stage actor, Serkis has received acclaim for his work on the stages of London
and across the United Kingdom. He starred as Iago in Othello, at the Royal Exchange Theatre; played the
Emcee in Cabaret; and originated the role of Potts in Jez Butterworth’s Mojo, at the Royal Court Theatre.
His stage work also includes productions of King Lear, Hush, and Decadence. In 2003, he made his
directorial debut with the play The Double Bass at London’s Southwark Playhouse.
As a director, Serkis also helmed the award-winning Heavenly Sword™ for PLAYSTATION®3 and
the upcoming Enslaved: Odyssey to the West for Namco Bandai Games. In addition, he wrote and
directed a short film called Snake, starring his wife, Lorraine Ashbourne and Rupert Graves.
From James Bond to the Old Vic, the multitalented actor has proven himself time and again in a
wide range of roles in film, theater and television. DANIEL CRAIG (Sakharine) received a BAFTA
nomination and an Empire Film Award for Casino Royale, the actor’s James Bond debut that became the
highest grossing in the history of the 007 franchise.
Born in 1968 in Chester and raised near Liverpool, Craig was first introduced to theater at the
Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse Theatre. When he reached his late teens, he moved to London to
join the National Youth Theatre, before continuing his training at the London Guildhall School of Music &
Drama. Craig has since secured eclectic roles in television, theater and film, and is now regarded as one
of Britain’s finest actors.
Craig received a Film Independent Spirit Award nomination (for Best Supporting Male) for his
role in Douglas McGrath’s Infamous, which also starred Sandra Bullock and Gwyneth Paltrow. His
multiple film credits also include his second outing as James Bond in Quantum of Solace, directed by
Marc Forster; Sam Mendes’ The Road to Perdition; Defiance, based on the true story of four brothers in
Nazi-occupied Poland, directed by Edward Zwick; The Golden Compass, co-starring Nicole Kidman and
Eva Green; Flashbacks of a Fool; Elizabeth; Hotel Splendide; I Dreamed of Africa; Love & Rage; Obsession;
The Power of One; The Mother; Sylvia; The Jacket; Layer Cake; and Enduring Love.
The Adventures of Tintin marks Craig’s fourth collaboration Steven Spielberg, after working with
him on the Oscar®-nominated Munich and on Jon Favreau’s western sci-fi thriller Cowboys & Aliens,
which the filmmaker produced. He also stars alongside Rachel Weisz and Naomi Watts in the upcoming
film Dream House, directed by multi-award winner Jim Sheridan. He will next star opposite Rooney
Mara and Christopher Plummer in David Fincher’s highly anticipated adaptation of Stieg Larsson’s best
seller The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.
A highly accomplished stage actor, Craig’s theater credits include leading roles in Hurlyburly,
with the Peter Hall Company at the Old Vic Theatre; Angels in America, at The National Theatre; and in A
Number at the Royal Court Theatre, alongside Michael Gambon. Last year, Craig trod the boards in a 12-
week Broadway run, opposite Hugh Jackman, in A Steady Rain, a contemporary American play based on
two Chicago cops who recount their conflicting stories of a harrowing experience.
Craig has numerous notable television credits, including the BBC adaptation of Michael Frayn’s
award-winning Copenhagen, Our Friends in the North, Sword of Honour, The Ice House, The Fortunes and
Misfortunes of Moll Flanders, Kiss and Tell, Sharpe’s Eagle and in the two-part BBC film Archangel, based
on Robert Harris’ book of the same name.
NICK FROST (Thomson) first came to prominence as the gun-mad character Mike Watt in UK
Channel 4’s Spaced, in which he starred opposite Simon Pegg and Jessica Hynes, and has become one of
the U.K.’s most sought-after actors. Since then, he has collaborated with Pegg in a number of successful
comedies, including Edgar Wright’s cult zombie movie Shaun of the Dead, for which earned a
nomination for Most Promising Newcomer by the British Independent Film Awards, followed by
Wright’s hugely successful hit comedy Hot Fuzz. Frost and Pegg next co-wrote and starred in Greg
Mottola’s comedy Paul; and appeared together again in Joe Cornish’s indie sci-fi comedy Attack the
Block. Frost’s other film credits include Kinky Boots, Penelope, Wild Child and The Boat That Rocked.
Frost demonstrated his acting credentials in the BBC’s adaptation of Martin Amis’ best seller
Money. Amis himself, added to the critical approval Frost garnered for the role. He has also appeared in
the Channel 4 sitcom Black Books, with Dylan Moran and Bill Bailey, and hosted the Channel 5 series
Danger! 50,000 Zombies! and Danger! Incoming Attack! Frost was the lead role in Hyperdrive, a sci-fi
comedy series for BBC Two, and starred in two seasons of Man Stroke Woman.
SIMON PEGG (Thompson) was recently seen in John Landis’ Burke & Hare and voiced the
character Reepicheep in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.
He was also seen boldly going into the J.J. Abrams-directed Star Trek, playing the iconic role of
Montgomery Scott (“Scotty”), and heard as one of the new lead voices in Ice Age: Dawn of the
Dinosaurs, playing Buck.
Pegg co-wrote and co-starred (as Tim Bisley) in the worldwide acclaimed, cult television show
Spaced. After two groundbreaking seasons, he moved on to develop and co-write, with Edgar Wright,
the critically praised Shaun of the Dead, starring as the eponymous hero, Shaun, alongside frequent
collaborator Nick Frost. The film has since been voted by many as one of the Best British Comedies ever
made, including Empire magazine and Channel 4.
After conquering zombies, award ceremonies and the USA, Pegg and Wright reprised their
debut movie success with the smash-hit follow-up feature Hot Fuzz, in which Pegg starred as übercop
Nicholas Angel, again opposite Frost. Pegg went on to star in the David Schwimmer-directed feature
film Run Fatboy Run, and as the antihero, Sidney Young, in How to Lose Friends & Alienate People,
alongside Kirsten Dunst and Jeff Bridges. Pegg and Frost then co-wrote and starred in Greg Mottola’s
Paul, and both appeared in the indie sci-fi comedy Attack the Block, written and directed by Joe Cornish.
Pegg will next be seen in Mission: Impossible—Ghost Protocol, in which he reprises his Mission:
Impossible III character, Benji.
TOBY JONES (Silk) won a London Film Critics Circle Award for his performance as Truman Capote
in Douglas McGrath’s 2006 biopic Infamous. He has also been recognized by the London Film Critics
Circle with nominations for his work in The Painted Veil, as well as for his roles in two political dramas:
Karl Rove in Oliver Stone’s W.; and Swifty Lazar in Ron Howard’s Frost/Nixon. In addition, he shared a
Screen Actors Guild Award® nomination for Outstanding Motion Picture Cast Performance for the latter.
Most recently, Jones reprised his performance as the actor behind the character of the house elf
Dobby, whom he first voiced in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Other recent film credits
include Mikael Håfström’s thriller The Rite, with Anthony Hopkins; David Gordon Green’s comedy Your
Highness; and Joe Johnston’s actioner Captain America: The First Avenger. He will next be seen in My
Week with Marilyn, with Michelle Williams, and Tomas Alfredson’s Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, with Gary
Oldman and Colin Firth.
Jones recently appeared in several independent films, including City of Ember, produced by Tom
Hanks; Jon Amiel’s Creation; and What’s Wrong with Virginia, which premiered at the 2010 Toronto Film
Festival. Among his other film credits are Frank Darabont’s The Mist; Peter Greenaway’s Nightwatching;
Michael Apted’s Amazing Grace; Stephen Frears’ Mrs. Henderson Presents; Marc Forster’s Oscar®-
nominated Finding Neverland; Luc Besson’s The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc; Andy Tennant’s
Ever After; Bille August’s Les Misérables; and Orlando, which marked his feature film debut.
An award-winning stage actor, Jones won an Olivier Award for his performance in the West End
comedy The Play What I Wrote, directed by Kenneth Branagh. He reprised his role in the Tony-
nominated Broadway production of the play. His work in London’s West End also includes Simon
McBurney’s production of Measure for Measure, and, more recently, Parlour Song and Every Good Boy
On television, Jones co-starred with Helen Mirren in HBO’s acclaimed miniseries Elizabeth I. His
credits also include such longform projects as Mo, The Old Curiosity Shop, The Way We Live Now, In Love
and War and Victoria & Albert. He was also seen in guest roles on Dr. Who and Christopher and His
One of British comedy's best known faces, MACKENZIE CROOK (Tom), who collected Star Wars
figurines as a child, is now immortalized in plastic as a 6”-high pirate action figure from his role in the
Pirates of the Caribbean blockbusters. He was born Paul Mackenzie Crook on September 29, 1971, in
Maidstone, Kent, England, UK, and went to grammar school in Dartford, where he first began appearing
in plays. He also spent time as a youth with his uncle in Zimbabwe.
Growing up, Crook expressed his creativity through painting, even replicating a pre-Raphaelite's
painting on to the back of his biker's jacket, and joined a local youth theatre. At the age of 18, he failed
to secure a place at art college and turned to writing comedy sketches. However, the principal of the
youth theatre believed in his potential and became his manager, guiding Crook to a career as a stand-up
In 1996, Crook made his film debut in The Man Who Fell in Love with a Traffic Cone! The
following year, he was scouted by Bob Mortimer at the Edinburgh Festival and shortly thereafter made
his debut on television as a stand-up comedian on The 11 O'Clock Show, then worked on other TV shows
playing grotesques and exaggerated characters.
From there, Crook shot to fame as Gareth Keenan, a quirky geek with a funny haircut, in the hit
UK comedy series, The Office, for which he earned a British Comedy Award nomination. He was also a
member of the main cast of the BBC show TV to Go.
The actor made his big screen debut opposite Al Pacino in The Merchant of Venice, and
subsequently appeared with Heath Ledger in The Brothers Grimm, and Johnny Depp in Finding
Neverland. Depp and Crookk had bonded during the making of Neverland and it was Depp who
recommended him as Ragetti, his best known role, in Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black
Pearl and its sequel, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. He is also billed as Ragetti in the third
installment of the Pirates franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End.
After roughly a decade on the stand-up comedian circuit, his deftness with quirky characters
brought him to worldwide attention. In the Pirates trilogy, Crook has displayed some of his funniest and
widest variety of emotions, effortlessly shifting facial expression from philosophical pensiveness to
grotesque excitement, and from a comically exaggerated fear to gleeful exuberance while removing the
character’s wooden eyeball.
In 2004, Crook appeared as Billy Bibbit, opposite Christian Slater, in the West End stage
production of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, which initially opened at Gielgud Theatre and then
played at the Edinburgh Theatre Festival. He has also written a screenplay for a future project, which he
describes as a period production set in London around the same period as the Pirates movies.
Crook has been enjoying a happy family life with his wife, Linsay, a former advertising executive
and club-owner, and their son Jude (born in 2003). He is fond of gardening and is also focused on
maintaining an organic way of life. He currently resides with his family in Peter Seller's old art-deco
house in Muswell Hill, North London, England.
DANIEL MAYS (Allan) was born in Epping, Essex, and trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic
Art. Since graduating in 2000, he has won widespread critical acclaim for roles in a diverse number of
film, television and theatre productions.
Mays first rose to prominence in 2001, when the British director Mike Leigh cast him in his film
All or Nothing, for which he garnered critical raves. He reunited with Leigh, starring alongside Imelda
Staunton, in the drama Vera Drake, which was nominated for three Academy Awards, 3 BAFTA Awards
and 6 British Independent Film Awards, including Best British Independent Film.
His film credits include Michael Bay's Pearl Harbor, Ridley Scott’s A Good Year, and the
powerfully religious Irish period drama Middletown, directed by Brian Kirk. In the summer of 2006,
Mays filmed the role of Tommy Nettle, alongside James McAvoy and Keira Knightley, in the multi-award
winning Atonement, adapted from Ian McEwan’s novel of the same name, directed by Joe Wright.
Additionally, he has starred in Hippie Hippie Shake, opposite Cillian Murphy and Sienna Miller,
about the counter-culturalist Richard Neville’s misadventures in London at the end of the 1960s; the hit
movie, The Bank Job, directed by Roger Donaldson and co-starring Jason Statham and Saffron Burrows;
Nigel Cole’s acclaimed Made in Dagenham, opposite Sally Hawkins, Miranda Richardson and Bob
Hoskins; and the British thriller Shifty, which premiered to a rapturous reception at the London Film
Festival, and was nominated for five British Independent Film Awards, including one for Mays in the Best
Supporting Actor category.
Mays’ career on stage has also earned many plaudits. In 2004, Ramin Gray cast him in Vassily
Sigarev’s arresting play Ladybird. At the Royal Court, he has appeared in Scarborough and the back-to-
back plays, The Winterling by Jez Butterworth, and Simon Stephen’s Motortown.
On television, he played the lead character of Carter Kranz in the BAFTA-nominated BBC 3 series
Funland. He also starred in the ITV drama, Half Broken Things, and the BAFTA-winning Abi Morgan film
White Girl for BBC 2. He was also cast in Nick Love’s remake of The Firm, and on the hit Channel 4
sitcom Plus One, as well as Channel Four's landmark trilogy of films, Red Riding, for which he garnered
overwhelming critical praise.
Touted as the “Ben Stiller of French Comedy,” GAD ELMALEH (Ben Salaad) is among the biggest
and most loved comedic stars in France. In 2006, Elmaleh was awarded the Chevalier des Arts et des
Lettres by France’s Minister of Culture and was voted “The Funniest Person in France.” Born in
Casablanca, Morocco, he was brought up in a mixed cultural background (of Moroccan Jewish descent),
speaking Moroccan Arabic, French, English and Hebrew.
At 17, Elmaleh left Morocco for Montreal, Canada, where he studied abroad and began a career
in radio, TV and theater. He soon went to Paris to study comedy and theater, where he wrote and
starred in his first one-man show, “Decalages.” This led to a number of one-man shows that swept
French-speaking audiences in Europe and Canada, including “La Vie Normale,” “L’Autre C’est Moi,” and
“Papa est en Haut” in 2006, which premiered at the Just For Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal as well
as sold out shows in Miami, Los Angeles and New York. He made history when he sold out the
prestigious L’Olympia (Paris’ Carnegie Hall) for seven consecutive weeks in 2007.
Over the course of his career, Elmaleh has starred in a string of hit films, including La Verite si je
Mens 2 and Couchou, based on one of his most popular characters from his show “La Vie Normale.”
Additional film credits include the comedy Ole, in which he starred opposite Gerard Depardieu; La
Doublure (The Valet), and Hors de Prix (Priceless), opposite Audrey Tautou. In 2005, he was invited to
host the prestigious Cesars Awards, which he hosted again the following year.
More recently, Elmaleh wrote, directed and starred in his first film, Coco, based on one of his
many beloved characters, which debuted at #1 to audiences in France, Belgium and Switzerland. He
recently appeared in his first English language film, Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris.
The grandson of a vaudevillian, JOE STARR (Barnaby) has been entertaining those around him
since a young age. Starr cut his teeth on the comedy circuit, where he has worked with a number of
comedy luminaries, including Chris Rush, Tim Allen, Kevin James, Wendy Liebman, Soupy Sales and
Robert Klein. He has appeared in venues ranging from top comedy clubs to theaters to showrooms in
Las Vegas and Atlantic City, as well as on the nationally syndicated radio show, The Bob & Tom Show.
In 2006, Starr appeared in the opening sequence of Oliver Stone’s World Trade Center. He also
starred opposite Christopher McDonald in the miniseries The Bronx is Burning, the story of the ’77
Yankees, produced by ESPN Original Entertainment. He has also taped many recurring appearances in
Comedy Central’s Important Things, with Demitri Martin, and the network’s Premium Blend.
On stage, he recently completed a 27-city Canadian Tour, sponsored by the prestigious Just For
Laughs Comedy Festival.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS
STEVEN SPIELBERG (Director/Producer), one of the industry’s most successful and influential
filmmakers, is a principal partner of DreamWorks Studios. In 2009, he and partner Stacey Snider joined
with The Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group to form the new DreamWorks. This new entity is a
continuation of DreamWorks Studios, which was founded in 1994 by Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and
Spielberg is also, collectively, the top-grossing director of all time, having helmed such
blockbusters as Jaws, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, the Indiana Jones franchise, and Jurassic Park. Among
his myriad honors, he is a three-time Academy Award® winner.
Spielberg took home his first two Oscars, for Best Director and Best Picture, for the
internationally lauded Schindler’s List, which received a total of seven Oscars. The film was also named
the Best Picture of 1993 by many of the major critics organizations, in addition to winning seven BAFTA
Awards and three Golden Globe Awards, both including Best Picture and Director. Spielberg also won
the Directors Guild of America (DGA) Award for his work on the film.
Spielberg won his third Academy Award®, for Best Director, for the World War II drama Saving
Private Ryan, which was the highest-grossing release (domestically) of 1998. It was also one of the
year’s most honored films, earning four additional Oscars®, as well as two Golden Globe Awards, for Best
Picture - Drama and Best Director, and numerous critics groups awards in the same categories.
Spielberg also won another DGA Award, and shared a Producers Guild of America’s (PGA) Award with
the film’s other producers. That same year, the PGA also presented Spielberg with the prestigious
Milestone Award for his historic contribution to the motion picture industry.
He has also earned Academy Award nominations for Best Director for Munich, E.T. The Extra-
Terrestrial, Raiders of the Lost Ark and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Additionally, he earned DGA
Award nominations for those films, as well as Jaws, The Color Purple, Empire of the Sun and Amistad.
With ten to date, Spielberg has been honored by his peers with more DGA Award nominations than any
other director. In 2000, he received the DGA’s Lifetime Achievement Award. He is also the recipient of
the Irving G. Thalberg Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the Hollywood
Foreign Press’s Cecil B. DeMille Award, the Kennedy Center Honors, and numerous other career tributes.
More recently, Spielberg directed the world-wide hit Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the
Crystal Skull. He is also a producer of this summer’s success Super 8 directed by JJ Abrams. Besides
directing Tintin, he is directing War Horse, based on an award-winning novel, which has also been
adapted into a major stage hit in London and recently won the Tony Award for Broadway’s Best Drama.
From DreamWorks Studios, the film is slated to open on December 28, 2011. In October, he will begin
production on Lincoln for release in the fall of 2012.
Spielberg’s career began with the 1968 short film Amblin, which led to him becoming the
youngest director ever signed to a long-term studio deal. He first gained attention for his 1971 telefilm
Duel. Three years later, he made his feature film directorial debut on The Sugarland Express, from a
screenplay he co-wrote. His next film was Jaws, which was the first film to break the $100 million mark.
In 1984, Spielberg formed his own production company, Amblin Entertainment. Under the
Amblin banner, the company produced such hits as Gremlins, Goonies, Back to the Future I, II, and III,
Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, An American Tail, Twister, The Mask of Zorro, and the Men in Black films.
Amblin also produced the Emmy-winning hit series ER with Warner Bros. Television.
In 1994, Spielberg partnered with Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen to form the original
DreamWorks Studios. The studio enjoyed both critical and commercial successes, including three
consecutive Best Picture Academy Award® winners: American Beauty, Gladiator, and A Beautiful Mind.
In its history, DreamWorks has also produced or co-produced a wide range of features, including the
Transformers blockbusters; Clint Eastwood’s World War II dramas Flags of Our Fathers and Letters from
Iwo Jima, the latter earning a Best Picture Oscar® nomination; Meet the Parents and Meet the Fockers;
and The Ring, to name only a few. Under the DreamWorks banner, Spielberg also directed such films as
War of the Worlds, Minority Report, Catch Me If You Can and A.I. Artificial Intelligence.
Spielberg has not limited his success to the big screen. On the heels of their experience on
Saving Private Ryan, t he and Tom Hanks teamed to executive produce the 2001 HBO miniseries Band of
Brothers, based on Stephen Ambrose’s book about a U.S. Army unit in Europe in World War II. Among
its many awards, the project won both Emmy and Golden Globe Awards for Outstanding Miniseries. He
and Hanks more recently reunited to executive produce the acclaimed 2010 HBO miniseries The Pacific,
this time focusing on the Marines in WWII’s Pacific theatre. The Pacific won eight Emmy Awards,
including Outstanding Miniseries.
Spielberg also executive produced the Emmy-winning Sci-Fi Channel miniseries Taken, and the
TNT miniseries Into the West. He was an executive producer on the Showtime series The United States
of Tara, and is an executive producer on TNT’s Falling Skies and the upcoming Terra Nova on Fox TV as
well as an executive producer on Smash which will debut on NBC early in 2012.
Apart from his filmmaking work, Spielberg has also devoted his time and resources to many
philanthropic causes. The impact of his work on Schindler’s List, led him to establish the Righteous
Persons Foundation using all his profits from the film. He also founded Survivors of the Shoah Visual
History Foundation, which, in 2005, became the USC Shoah Foundation Institute for Visual History and
Education. In addition, Spielberg is the Chairman Emeritus of the Starlight Children’s Foundation.
STEVEN MOFFAT (Screenplay) is one of the UK's most eminent television writers. His two-part
story The Empty Child and The Doctor Dances for Series 1 of the BBC TV's revival of Dr. Who (starring
Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper) won him much acclaim and the award for Television Moment of
the Year, as well as the prestigious Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation – Short Form. He went
on to join the series as executive producer and writer on the following season, with David Tennant as
the Doctor, for BBC One. In addition to writing and co-creating the series Sherlock, for which he won a
Royal Television Society Award, he garnered acclaim for his updated version of Jekyll, starring James
Nesbitt, for BBC One.
As creator/writer of the cult BBC2 sitcom Coupling, Moffat wrote 28 episodes over 4 series,
winning the Silver Rose of Montreux 2001 and the award for Best TV Comedy at the British Comedy
Awards December 2003. Coupling is produced by Sue Vertue for Hartswood Films.
Moffat’s first television work was as writer of all 43 episodes over five seasons of Press Gang,
about a group of wayward high school students who are given a local newspaper to run. The series won
the BAFTA and Royal Television Society Awards for Best Children's Program (and was nominated for two
Writers Guild of Great Britain awards, 1 Prix Jeunesse and another BAFTA).
He then wrote two situation comedies for the BBC, Joking Apart, directed by Bob Spiers, which
won the Bronze Rose of Montreux 1995, and Chalk, which caused an uproar in the teaching profession.
His other television work includes Privates, also directed by Spiers, the pilot for a one-hour comedy
drama, for the ITV Network; Norman at the Office, a one-off half-hour comedy starring Robert Lindsay;
Overkill and Dying Live, half-hour television plays for Dawn French; and Exam Conditions, a half-hour
silent film for the EBU Commission/Central Television, which won the Prix Jeunesse and Plovdiv Awards
and was nominated for a RTS award.
Although he’s only in his mid-thirties, award winning filmmaker, EDGAR WRIGHT’s (Screenplay) list of
credits reads like that of a seasoned veteran. With projects like the UK television series-turned-
international cult phenomenon Spaced, the rom-zom-com feature film debut Shaun of the Dead, and its
follow up action/comedy opus Hot Fuzz, he has evolved from a young film geek wanting to prove himself
into one of the most sought after geeks working in film today.
Last summer, Wright released his first U.S. production of the comic book movie Scott Pilgrim
Versus the World, which starred Michael Cera in the title role. He was also tapped by directors Quentin
Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez to contribute the faux trailer Don’t, for the epic Grindhouse.
Wright recently co-wrote The Astonishing Ant Man with his Tintin co-screenwriter Joe Cornish,
for Marvel Studios.
JOE CORNISH (Screenplay) is best known as one half of British comedy duo Adam and Joe. As
well as writing and directing his first film, Attack the Block, for Film Four and Big Talk Productions,
Cornish recently co-wrote The Astonishing Ant Man, with Edgar Wright, for Marvel Studios.
Cornish first appeared on British TV screens in 1997 as co-star and co-creator of The Adam and
Joe Show, a home-made comedy show famous for its sketches, songs and animations satirizing pop
culture. The show found considerable cult and critical acclaim, winning the Royal Television Society’s
Best Newcomers award in 1998 and running for four seasons.
The success of The Adam and Joe Show led to spin-off comedy series on both Channel 4 and the
BBC, including Adam & Joe’s Formative Years, Adam and Joe’s American Animation Adventure, and
Adam and Joe Go Tokyo. Cornish also worked as director for Channel 4 comedy shows such as Modern
Toss and Blunder, as a writer for BBC2’s Big Train, and as a presenter for BBC2 and BBC Radio 4.
Alongside his film work, Cornish maintains a successful radio career with Adam. The duo took
over from Ricky Gervais on radio station XFM in 2003, spawning a popular series of podcasts. They
moved to BBC 6music in 2007, where their Saturday morning show was awarded the 2008 Broadcasting
Press Guild Award for Radio Programme Of The Year, three Silver Sony Awards in 2009, and Sony Gold
for Best Radio Comedy in 2010.
PETER JACKSON (Producer) made history with The Lord of the Rings trilogy, becoming the first
person to direct three major feature films simultaneously. The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers
and The Return of the King were nominated for and collected a slew of awards from around the globe,
including 17 Academy Awards®, 12 British Academy of Film and Television Awards and four Golden
It was for The Return of the King that Jackson received his most impressive collection of awards.
This included three Academy Awards® (Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Director and Best Picture), two
Golden Globes (Best Director and Best Motion Picture-Drama), three BAFTAs (Best Adapted Screenplay,
Best Film and Audience Award), a Directors Guild Award, a Producers Guild Award and a New York Film
Critics Circle Award.
As a follow-up to The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, in 2005 Jackson directed, wrote and produced
King Kong for Universal Pictures. The film grossed over $500 million and won three Oscars®. He next
garnered critical plaudits for directing the mystery drama The Lovely Bones.
Jackson previously received widespread acclaim for his 1994 feature Heavenly Creatures, which
received an Academy Award® nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Other film credits include The
Frighteners, starring Michael J. Fox; the adult puppet feature Meet the Feebles; and Braindead, which
won 16 international science fiction awards, including the Saturn. Jackson also co-directed the television
documentary Forgotten Silver, which also hit the film
In 2009, Jackson produced the worldwide sci-fi hit District 9. He is also producer of the remake
of the WWII film Dambusters.
Jackson is currently at work directing the highly anticipated two-film adaptation of Tolkien’s The
Hobbit, which he also co-wrote.
Born in New Zealand on Halloween in 1961, Jackson began at an early age making movies with
his parents’ Super 8 camera. At 17, he left school and, after purchasing a 16mm camera, began shooting
a science fiction comedy short, which, three years later, had grown into a 75-minute feature called Bad
Jackson works closely with partner Fran Walsh, with whom he shares his writing and producing
credits, as well as a family. He has a special interest in WWI memorabilia and is the proud owner of a
number of aircraft from that era.
KATHLEEN KENNEDY (Producer) is one of the most respected producers and executives in the
industry. As a testament to her standing in the film community, she was recently elected Vice President
of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). She has produced some of the most
honored and successful films in motion picture history, including her collaborations with Steven
Spielberg on such films as E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, Schindler’s List, and Jurassic Park. In addition to The
Adventures of Tintin, she is also producer of Spielberg’s World War I drama War Horse.
A six-time Academy Award® nominee in the category of Best Picture, Kennedy received her
latest Oscar® nod for her producing work on David Fincher’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, which
received 13 Oscar® nominations in all, winning three. The film was a production of The
Kennedy/Marshall Company, which she co-founded in 1992 with director/producer Frank Marshall.
Under the Kennedy/Marshall Company banner, Kennedy garnered three of her Best Picture
Oscar® nominations: for Spielberg’s Munich; Gary Ross’s Seabiscuit; and M. Night Shyamalan’s breakout
film The Sixth Sense. Kennedy/Marshall also produced the Bourne trilogy of films, which, collectively,
have been credited with reinventing the spy thriller; The Spiderwick Chronicles; Shyamalan’s The Last
Airbender; and Clint Eastwood’s Hereafter. In addition, the company has produced such indie features
as Persepolis, which earned a 2008 Oscar® nomination for Best Animated Feature, and The Diving Bell
and the Butterfly, for which she earned an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Feature. For
the small screen, Kennedy/Marshall produced the Emmy-nominated 2010 HBO movie The Special
Relationship, scripted by Peter Morgan.
Kennedy launched her producing career via a successful association with Steven Spielberg,
which began when she worked as a production assistant on 1941. She went on to work with the
director on Raiders of the Lost Ark before making her producing debut on E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial,
which also brought Kennedy her first Oscar® nomination.
In 1982, Kennedy co-founded Amblin Entertainment with Spielberg and Marshall. While at
Amblin, she produced and guided two of the most successful franchises in film history: the Jurassic Park
films and the Back to the Future trilogy. She also received her second Oscar® nomination for her work
on Spielberg’s The Color Purple, and was an executive producer on the 1993 Best Picture winner,
Schindler’s List. She also produced the Spielberg-directed films Empire of the Sun, A.I. Artificial
Intelligence, and, more recently, War of the Worlds.
Additionally, Kennedy produced or executive produced many of Amblin’s critical and box-office
successes, including Twister, The Bridges of Madison County, The Flintstones, We’re Back! A Dinosaur’s
Story, Noises Off…, Hook, Cape Fear, The Land Before Time, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Young Sherlock
Holmes, An American Tail, The Goonies and Gremlins, as well as Frank Marshall’s 1990 directorial debut,
Kennedy is on the chair of the Academy of Motion Pictures’ Producers Branch Executive
Committee and is also a member of the Academy’s Board of Governors. She recently completed her
tenure as President of the Producers Guild of America, which, in 2006, bestowed upon her its highest
honor, the Charles Fitzsimons Service Award. In 2008, she and Marshall received the Producers Guild of
America’s David O. Selznick Award for Career Achievement.
Born in Brooklyn, New York, KEN KAMINS (Executive Producer) is a graduate of Northwestern
University’s School of Speech. He landed in the film business straight after college, with a job at
MGM/UA as a sales rep in their 16mm non-theatrical division. He then became vice president,
worldwide acquisitions for RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video.
In 1992, Kamins joined the InterTalent Agency, where Peter Jackson signed with him, beginning
their near two decades’ collaboration. Kamins then joined talent agency ICM as its executive vice
president, where he secured financing for the Academy Award®-winning The Lord of the Rings trilogy, as
well as other independent films like Robert Altman’s Gosford Park, Martin Scorsese’s Gangs of New York
and John Boorman’s The General.
Kamins went on to form Key Creatives, his own literary management firm, whose clients include
Academy Award®-winning artists Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, and
screenwriter/producer Christopher McQuarrie, as well as the filmmaking team of Paul W.S. Anderson
and Jeremy Bolt.
Other executive producer credits include the Tom Cruise hit drama Valkyrie, with McQuarrie as
writer/producer and Bryan Singer directing, as well as the recent sci-fi hit District 9. In addition, Kamins
served in the same capacity on Jackson’s The Lovely Bones, the Peter Jackson-produced remake of
Dambusters, and Jackson’s two-film adaptation of The Hobbit.
NICK RODWELL (Executive Producer) met Tintin at the age of 7 years' old and has never
forgotten this magic moment. He has spent the last 27 years protecting and promoting Hergé’s work in
every possible way. The Hergé Museum opened its doors in 2009 just outside of Brussels in Belgium.
STEPHANE SPERRY (Executive Producer) formed his production company, Liaison Films, in the
fall of 2002. Liaison has a multi-year first-look production deal with Focus Features. The company has a
mandate to bring European properties, ideas, and talent to the American marketplace and beyond.
Dividing his time between Los Angeles and Paris, Sperry maintains an exclusive advisory
arrangement with Focus, one which also entails continuing communication with Canal +, Studio Canal,
and parent company Universal Pictures.
Before forming Liaison, the veteran film executive spent nearly three years as co-president of
Canal +’s U.S. operation. Based in Los Angeles, he oversaw the company’s investments in U.S. films.
For four years prior, Mr. Sperry was executive vice president, programs and strategic
development, subsidiaries division for the French company. During that period, he oversaw the
strengthening of the company’s business units into a cohesive whole as the company went public. He
first came to Canal + in 1987, and as head of acquisitions was an architect of the company’s library of
His previous positions include three years as president of Alliance International, as well as four
years as head of Island Records (France), where he helped build up the company’s film business. He
began his career in the film industry in the 1970s, working on nearly three dozen features in various
He most recently produced Assault on Precinct 13, and the Pascal Laugier’s ghost story Saint
Ange, starring Virginie Ledoyen.
MICHAEL KAHN (Editor) has won Best Editing Oscars for three Spielberg films: Raiders of the
Lost Ark, Schindler’s List, and Saving Private Ryan. He also received Academy Award nominations for
Adrian Lyne’s Fatal Attraction, and Spielberg’s Empire of the Sun, and Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
A member of American Cinema Editors, Kahn’s editing career goes back to television films such
as Hogan’s Heroes and Eleanor and Franklin, for which he won an Emmy. Among the many films he has
edited are The Eyes of Laura Mars, The Goonies, Toy Soldiers, Hook, Twister, Tomb Raider II and The
Spiderwick Chronicles. More recently, he edited the blockbuster Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger
Tides as well as Prince of Persia.
In addition to his extraordinary list of credits, Kahn includes most of Steven Spielberg’s films,
such as his recent War Horse, as well as Munich, War of The Worlds, The Terminal, Catch Me If You Can,
Minority Report, A.I., Saving Private Ryan, Amistad, Jurassic Park: The Lost World, Schindler’s List, Hook,
Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade, Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom, and Raiders of The Lost Ark.
With an entertainment industry career spanning more than 30 years, CAROLYNNE
CUNNINGHAM (Co-Producer) first collaborated with filmmaker Peter Jackson on Heavenly Creatures as
1st assistant director. They met again for the challenging and Academy Award®-winning trilogy The Lord
of the Rings. After completion of the trilogy, Cunningham continued with Jackson on King Kong and The
Lovely Bones in a producer role, while also maintaining her 1st assistant director duties. She served as
producer on the recent sci-fi hit District 9.
Cunningham’s eclectic credits as 1st assistant director include Peter Pan, Swimming Upstream,
Dating the Enemy, Shine, The Sum of Us, Flynn and many other features, miniseries and telefilms.
A native of Sydney, Australia, Cunningham also is a resident of New Zealand.
JASON MCGATLIN (Co-Producer) has a long list of credits in various production capacities on
How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Deep Blue Sea, The Parent Trap, Clint Eastwood’s Midnight in the
Garden of Good and Evil and The Bridges of Madison County.
Working his way up to production manager and production supervisor, he next worked on
Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer, X2 and X-Men: The Last Stand, and War of the Worlds, his first film
with Steven Spielberg and Kathleen Kennedy, as well as Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events
McGatlin has also produced and edited the documentaries Old Coaches and Head Hunter.
One of the most popular and successful American orchestral composers of the modern age,
JOHN WILLIAMS (Composer) is the winner of five Academy Awards, 17 Grammys, three Golden Globes,
two Emmys and five BAFTA Awards from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Best known for
his film scores and ceremonial music, Williams is also a noted composer of concert works and a
Williams’ scores for Steven Spielberg’s Jaws, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, Schindler's List, as well as
the Indiana Jones series, have won him multiple awards and produced best-selling recordings, and his
scores for the original Star Wars trilogy transformed the landscape of Hollywood film music and became
icons of American culture.
Williams has composed the music and served as music director for nearly eighty films, including
Saving Private Ryan, Amistad, Seven Years in Tibet, The Lost World, Rosewood, Sleepers, Nixon, Sabrina,
Schindler's List, Jurassic Park, Home Alone, Far and Away, JFK, Hook, Presumed Innocent, Always, Born
on the Fourth of July, the Indiana Jones trilogy, The Accidental Tourist, Empire of the Sun, The Witches of
Eastwick, the Star Wars trilogy, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, The Empire Strikes Back, Superman, Close
Encounters of the Third Kind, Jaws and Goodbye Mr. Chips.
Williams has been awarded several gold and platinum records, and his score for Schindler's List
earned him both an Oscar and a Grammy. In 2000, at the ShoWest Convention USA, he was honored as
Maestro of the Year by the National Association of Theater Owners.
John Williams was born in New York and moved to Los Angeles with his family in 1948. There he
attended UCLA and studied composition privately with Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco. After service in the
Air Force, Mr. Williams returned to New York to attend the Juilliard School, where he studied piano with
Madame Rosina Lhevinne. While in New York, he also worked as a jazz pianist, both in clubs and on
recordings. He then returned to Los Angeles, where he began his career in the film industry, working
with such composers as Bernard Herrmann, Alfred Newman, and Franz Waxman. He went on to write
music for many television programs in the 1960s, winning two Emmy Awards for his work.
In January 1980, Williams was named nineteenth Conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra since
its founding in 1885. He assumed the title of Boston Pops Laureate Conductor, following his retirement
in December 1993, and currently holds the title of Artist-in-Residence at Tanglewood.
Williams has written many concert pieces, including a symphony, a sinfonietta for wind
ensemble, a cello concerto premiered by Yo-Yo Ma and the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood
in 1994, concertos for the flute and violin recorded by the London Symphony Orchestra, concertos for
the clarinet and tuba, and a trumpet concerto, which was premiered by the Cleveland Orchestra and
their principal trumpet Michael Sachs in September 1996. His bassoon concerto, The Five Sacred Trees,
which was premiered by the New York Philharmonic and principal bassoon player Judith LeClair in 1995,
was recorded for Sony Classical by Williams with LeClair and the London Symphony.
In addition, Mr. Williams has composed the well-known NBC News theme "The Mission,"
"Liberty Fanfare" composed for the re-dedication of the Statue of Liberty, "We're Lookin' Good!,"
composed for the Special Olympics in celebration of the 1987 International Summer Games, and themes
for the 1984, 1988, and 1996 Summer Olympic games. His most recent concert work Seven for Luck – for
soprano and orchestra – is a seven-piece song cycle based on the texts of former U.S. Poet Laureate Rita
Dove. Seven for Luck was given its world premiere by the Boston Symphony under Mr. Williams with
soprano Cynthia Haymon.
Williams has led the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra on United States Tours in 1985, 1989 and
1992 and on a tour of Japan in 1987. He led the Boston Pops Orchestra on tours of Japan in 1990 and
1993. In addition to leading the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Symphony Hall and at Tanglewood,
Williams has appeared as guest conductor with a number of major orchestras, including the London
Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony, the Pittsburgh
Symphony, the Dallas Symphony, the San Francisco Symphony and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
He holds honorary degrees from fourteen American universities, including Berklee College of
Music in Boston, Boston College, Northeastern University, Tufts University, Boston University, the New
England Conservatory of Music and the University of Massachusetts at Boston. On June 23, 2000, he
became the first inductee into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame
JOE LETTERI (Senior Visual Effects Supervisor) is a four-time Oscar winner – for his
groundbreaking visual effects work on James Cameron’s Avatar; the last two The Lord of the Rings films,
The Two Towers and Return of the King; and King Kong, the latter three films with Peter Jackson. He was
also nominated for the visual effects of I, Robot.
Letteri is a partner in the New Zealand-based digital effects house WETA Digital. Prior to joining
WETA, he worked at ILM. Letteri’s other credits include X-Men: The Last Stand, The Day the Earth Stood
Still, Van Helsing and The Water Horse.
SCOTT E. ANDERSON (Visual Effects Supervisor) is a three-time Best Visual Effects Oscar
nominee, for Hollow Man, Starship Troopers, and Babe, winning the Oscar on the latter. He has
previously worked with Peter Jackson on the director’s King Kong and The Lovely Bones.
His credits as visual effects supervisor include Superman Returns, James and the Giant Peach,
Babe, Die Hard: With A Vengeance, and Kerry Conran’s immersive Sky Captain and the World of
Tomorrow, on which he served as senior visual effects supervisor. Additional credits in various visual
effects capacities include I, Robot, The Ninth Gate, The Pagemaster and many others. He started his
career in computer graphics at Industrial Light & Magic, where he contributed to such films as James
Cameron’s The Abyss and Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, The
Hunt For Red October and Memoirs of an Invisible Man.
JAMIE BEARD (Animation Supervisor) is a filmmaker and animator who has worked with Weta
Digital on a number of films, including Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, King
Kong and The Lovely Bones, as well as the films I, Robot,, X-Men: The Last Stand, Eragon and The Water
Horse. Additional credits include Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Ella Enchanted and the TV
ANDREW JONES (Art Director) shared in the Excellence in Production Design Award from the Art
Directors Guild for his work as art director on James Cameron’s Avatar. He has also served as art
director on Alice in Wonderland and Green Lantern.
Jones began his career as a sculptor and model maker, and became an assistant art director on
films like The Polar Express, Monster House, Transformers and Beowulf.
JEFF WISNIEWSKI (Art Director) also shared in the Excellence in Production Design Award from
the Art Directors Guild for his work as art director on James Cameron’s Avatar. He has also served as art
director on Knight and Day and Real Steel. Wisniewski served as assistant art director on Munich and
Mars Needs Moms.