The news that Pixar would be adapting Edgar Rice Burroughs' classic sci-fi series John Carter of Mars has been out since last year, but only recently has it been confirmed that Andrew Stanton is writing the adaptation. Back in October last year, Pixar confirmed that they're working on making a total of three John Carter of Mars films, with the first arriving sometime before 2012. Details have been rather sparse since then, most likely because Disney and Pixar want to keep the project a secret for the time being, but some confirmation has finally arrived. The Pixar Blog confirmed directly from Wall-E director Andrew Stanton himself that he is indeed currently writing John Carter of Mars.
There aren't too many details known yet, but this is great news for fans of Edgar Rice Burroughs' series. In addition to directing Finding Nemo and Wall-E, Stanton also wrote the screenplays for Toy Story, A Bug's Life, Toy Story 2, Monsters Inc, Finding Nemo, and Wall-E. While John Carter of Mars isn't exactly family friendly like all of the previous films Stanton has made, it's a wonderful opportunity for both Stanton and Pixar to branch out and explore in a new genre. The project has been in production hell for quite some time but it now seems like Pixar is the studio to finally move it into the production stage.
The first novel in series, titled The Princess of Mars, was originally published in 1917. John Carter is a red blooded American civil war hero and fighting man from Virginia. A strange incident whilst prospecting in Apache country propels him to Mars where he immediately encounters the enormous war-like green men of Mars and the planets equally alien landscapes, animals and technology. Soon Carter falls in with the red men (and their beautiful red women, including Dejah Thoris, Princess of Helium, in particular) and his non-stop adventures begin.
I'm not all that familiar with the series, but others, like Hunter of SlashFilm, seem quite enthusiastic about it. Considering it's a beloved sci-fi classic and considering Pixar never goes wrong, I'm expecting this to be nothing less then extraordinary. Of course, it would help if I read a few of the books first, but considering this won't hit theaters for at least another three years, I think I've got some time. One of the most intriguing rumors surrounding this project involves whether Pixar will make this their first live action feature or whether it will be animated or whether it'll be some interesting combination of the two. However they decide to do it, I'm sure I'll end up as enthusiastic as Hunter by the time it hits theaters.
Full photo of Frank Frazetta's John Carter of Mars art (seen at the very top) can be found here. Does John Carter of Mars sound more like a Pixar movie you'd be interested in instead of Cars 2?