It's a good week to be a geek - we've recently learned that we'll get even more "Star Wars" and "Harry Potter" than was originally planned.
"Star Wars: The Clone Wars," the animated series that will debut this fall on Cartoon Network and TNT, will launch with a full-length, big-screen movie on Aug. 15.
And "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," the last book in the series, will be split into two films, to be released in November 2010 and May 2011. (We've also got "Half-Blood Prince" to look forward to this fall.)
The last "Harry Potter" book will be split into two movies, to be released in 2010 and 2011. Associated Press
The Clone Wars, which take place between Episodes II and III, is my favorite between-movie period of the "Star Wars" saga. A pre-evil Anakin Skywalker and an in-his-prime Obi-Wan Kenobi fight battles in what we now know is a war orchestrated by future-Emperor Palpatine.
This time period offers classic lightsaber-swinging action, occasional moments of levity, and genuine emotion as Anakin and Obi-Wan take turns saving each other's lives and Anakin pines after his secret love, Padme. And in the movie, Anakin has an apprentice of his own, Ahsoki (funny she wasn't mentioned in any of the books or comics, but I'll let it slide for now).
"Deathly Hallows" is also a good piece about friendship and love, as the bond between Harry, Ron and Hermione is tested during their search for Horcruxes to vanquish Voldemort. Compared to the other "Potter" entries, I didn't care for this book as much - I missed Hogwarts and all the side characters - but two good films could still come from it.
A scene from the animated film "Star Wars: The Clone Wars" is shown. Lucasfilm Ltd., Warner Bros. Pictures and Turner Broadcasting System Inc. announced recently that the film will open Aug. 15 in theaters throughout North America, followed by the debut of a television series this fall. Associated Press
The filmmakers have said these were creative decisions. In the case of "Star Wars," they're using an event movie to launch a TV series on a long run of episodes. In the case of "Potter," they're claiming they don't want to water down the book by trimming it.
Of course, money (or credits or galleons) might have a little something to do with the decisions, too. But, as a "Star Wars" and "Potter" geek myself, I'm not complaining.
- By John Hansen,
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