I finally let Simon and Henry (ages 7 and 5) watch the Star Wars movies, and unfortunately they got more hooked than expected. It's all about the light sabers, who'd a thunk? So I may be an idiot dad, but I can't help pointing out all the stupid things in Star Wars.
For example, if they have these big giant spaceships with powerful weapons, why do they send out all these tiny spacecraft and little man-sized robots with dinky guns to launch attacks? So much of Star Wars doesn't make logistical sense -- and they are hip to it -- but it doesn't matter. They love all the sliding doors and gliding ships and humming light sabers and I suppose that's normal for little boys.
Thankfully, they still like books and since they are almost finished with Bone (so great!) and have read all the Tin Tin anybody could handle (also great!), I was trying to think of a new (or old) series for them. My favorite as a kid was John Carter of Mars.
Edgar Rice Burroughs' John Carter of Mars stories, which began in 1912, went further than Jules Verne and H.G. Wells as he just said to hell with planet Earth and set up shop on the red planet. There on Mars, they had gigantic multi-armed green warriors, lots of swords, levitating hovercraft, and of course beautiful buxom humanoid women. Ok, ok... probably just as stupid as Star Wars if not stupider.
But anyway, I've just had it with light sabers. And apparently I'm not the only one looking for options outside the Lucas universe, because they are going to make a movie about John Carter of Mars.
Robert Rodriguez was going to direct, but he got in some kind of snafu over "Sin City" so he's out. Then it was kicked over to the guy who did "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow", but he's out... thank god.
Then it was kicked over to the guy who directed "Iron Man", which I thought was weak, but he's out. Now it's in the hands of Andrew Stanton who created "Wall-e" and "Monsters, Inc." Stanton is currently writing the screenplay and it looks like Pixar is on board for a 2012 release. Cool!
This gives Simon and Henry time to absorb a few of the books (the first 3 at least) before it hits the big screen. We've been looking at the artwork at the ERB official site... haven't sold them on it yet.