Culture

Orwellian: Andy Serkis Revives 'Animal Farm' Minus the Politics

Andy Serkis/Photo © Helga Esteb/Shutterstock
Andy Serkis/Photo © Helga Esteb/Shutterstock

I'm a huge fan of Andy Serkis, whose superhuman physical talents have brought characters like Gollum and King Kong to life, and I was thrilled to hear that his production company was working on a motion-capture animated version of George Orwell's Animal Farm. That is, until I read that he intends to sidestep a lot of the story's political allegory (which is, let's face it, exactly what makes it so powerful and durable). It makes the flawed version made in 1999 that starred Kelsey Grammer and Julia Louis-Dreyfus look downright valiant in comparison. Keep your fables, Serkis: give us the meat!

Kids and preteens are already swept up in a blizzard of fairy-tale adaptations, but what about the poor twenty-somethings whose views and needs are so under-represented? They should all go here to check in on Thumbelina, Tinkerbell, and other characters. I was sad to learn that the Prince and the Pauper "unfriended each other on Facebook because neither one could stand the other’s political status updates."

We've finally got a glimpse of Ben Kingsley as The Mandarin, the main villain of "Iron Man 3." Weren't we just talking about this kind of short-sighted casting? I don't necessarily think that characters ought to definitely always be portrayed by someone of matching ethnic background, but this one is actually named "The Mandarin" for crying out loud (here's some background on him in case you figured maybe he just likes tinned orange slices in his salad or something).

The newest statue in of Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum takes up a lot less space than its neighbors. No, it's not Snooki (although the reality star did once host a New Year's Eve party there). It's E.T., the extra-terrestrial, and you can watch the video below, which shows the painstaking process of re-creating the pint-sized hero. The result is way better than the models you might have seen on the really weird "E.T." ride at Universal Studios.

  • Matt

    According to Wikipedia, The Mandarin's goal is "to find a means of avenging himself upon the civilization that had taxed him..." Finally, a supervillain the Tea Party can rally behind!

  • Tom Blunt

    Don't tread on The Mandarin!