Access Week In Geek: ‘80s Animation Domination, The Return Of Voltron & ‘The Smurfs’

In the Access Week In Geek, Voltron’s new adventures set record ratings on Nicktoons… Global Smurfs Day is upon us!…. The first character images from the set from “The Hobbit” are revealed! And will Emma Stone be battling zombies again?

HOBBITS & WIZARDS SPOTTED IN THE SHIRE - The first images of Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins and Ian McKellan as Gandalf on the New Zealand set of “The Hobbit” have been revealed online by Entertainment Weekly.

The epic two-part prequel to “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy is currently being shot in 3-D and will include returning cast appearances from Elijah Wood (Frodo Baggins), Orlando Bloom (Legolas), Christopher Lee (Saruman), and Ian Holm (as the older Bilbo Baggins).

’‘There’s no way you can pace yourself for shoots like these,’’ Jackson told EW regarding the massive production. '‘When we were going through the schedule for ‘The Hobbit,’ I felt a terrible drop in my stomach when I saw that we’d be shooting for 254 days. We’re only 12 days short of “The Lord of the Rings” even though we’re only doing two movies,” he said.

”When I saw that, I had to sort of pick myself up off the floor and carry on,” he admitted.

EMMA STONE VS. ZOMBIES: ROUND TWO? - She will star as Gwen Stacy in the forthcoming “The Amazing Spider-Man,” but Emma Stone may find herself once again dealing with the living dead following her memorable performance in 2009’s (underrated and underappreciated) “Zombieland”.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Stone has been offered the lead in Lionsgate’s “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,” based on (and twisting) the classic Jane Austen novel to include walking corpses in the storyline.

JULIA ORMOND’S KRYPTONIAN CASTING - Deadline reported that Julia Ormond (“First Knight,” “Legends of the Fall”) is in talks to play Lara, the Kryptonian mother of Superman/Kal-El in the upcoming “Man of Steel.”

Russell Crowe is also reportedly on the filmmaker’s radar to play her husband, Jor-El (the role made famous previously on the big screen by the late Marlon Brando) and father of Kal-El.

They would join the previously announced cast of Henry Cavill in the title role, Amy Adams as Lois Lane, Kevin Costner as Jonathan Kent, and Diane Lane as Martha Kent. “Man of Steel” is targeting a December 2012 release.

VOLTRON’S RETURN SOARS IN THE RATINGS FOR NICKTOONS - Great news for fans of “Voltron,” the wildly popular ‘80s cartoon about five mechanical space lions that combined into a single super mechwarrior. The mighty robot returned to the air with all new adventures last week on Nicktoons, with a 90-minute movie, “Voltron Force: New Defenders Trilogy.” The heralded event set a new record as the highest rated series premiere for the network in all the key demos and posted solid increases over last year’s time period.

The sequel series to the classic show follows three young Galaxy Alliance recruits who join the original Voltron team in their quest to vanquish evil in the galaxy, and features an all-new theme song recorded by Swizz Beatz. “Voltron Force” airs on Thursdays at 8:30 PM.

SMURFTASTIC NEWS! “GLOBAL SMURFS DAY” IS UPON US! - To celebrate the birthday of Peyo, the creator of the Smurfs (who was born on June 25, 1928), Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation will hold events on June 25 all over the world for what will be known as Global Smurfs Day.

In New York City, fans can gather at the South Street Seaport to be counted with other locations worldwide in an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for most people dressed up as Smurfs in multiple places. “The Smurfs,” a CGI and live-action big screen adventure for the true blue characters will hit theatres on July 29. It stars Neil Patrick Harris (“How I Met Your Mother”), Jayma Mays (“Glee”) and Hank Azaria (“The Simpsons”) as Gargamel.

CHILLING NEW “RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES” TRAILER HITS - A new international trailer for “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” the chilling prequel to the classic sci-fi franchise starring James Franco, Freida Pinto and John Lithgow hit the web this week. The more that is revealed about this film, the more intriguing it becomes. As the audience, we will no doubt be captivated by the cute and intelligent nature of the chimpanzee Caesar, become horrified by the abuse he suffers from his captors, and root for him when he ultimately leads the simian revolt against humanity.

This international trailer has been gaining steady positive buzz for the film, which hits theatres on August 5th. Click HERE to see it.

NEW “CAPTAIN AMERICA” TRAILER AND POSTER REVEALED - Check out the new action packed trailer for “Captain America” starring Chris Evans and the new one sheet at Yahoo Movies. Click HERE To see the trailer.

FX’S “POWERS” SNAGS ITS TWO LEADS - Per Deadline, Jason Patric and Lucy Punch have signed on as the two leads in the pilot for FX’s “Powers,” based on the graphic novel where super powers are commonplace in the world.

According to the storyline, Christian Walker and Deena Pilgrim (Patric and Punch), will play two Homicide Detectives assigned to track down criminals who possess super abilities. The pilot is targeting a mid-summer shoot in Chicago.

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