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March 9, 2009

Newsbites: The supernatural stories edition!

1. Alfred Molina has been cast as the evil magician Horvath in Jerry Bruckheimer's modernized live-action adaptation of The Sorcerer's Apprentice. Nicolas Cage will play the sorcerer, Jay Baruchel will play the apprentice, and Teresa Palmer will play the apprentice's love interest. -- SlashFilm, Hollywood Reporter

2. Chris Columbus, who directed the first two Harry Potter movies (2001-2002) among other things, will direct Percy Jackson, based on the first book in the Rick Riordan series about a schoolboy who discovers that his father is the Greek god Poseidon. The story will revolve around the theft of Zeus's master lightning bolt, and it will star Logan Lerman, who played one of Mel Gibson's sons in The Patriot (2000) and Christian Bale's son in 3:10 to Yuma (2007). -- Variety, Hollywood Reporter

3. It's official: Dakota Fanning will play an evil Italian vampire in New Moon, the sequel to Twilight. Rumour also has it that Drew Barrymore has been approached about directing the third film, Eclipse; the first film was directed by Catherine Hardwicke, and the second film is being directed by Chris Weitz. -- Variety, Hollywood Reporter, Entertainment Weekly (x2)

4. New Line Cinema and Platinum Dunes have set a release date of April 16, 2010 for their Nightmare on Elm Street reboot, and they are working on a sequel to their Friday the 13th reboot as well. No one has been cast as Freddy Krueger yet, but a grassroots movement is afoot to convince the producers to give the role to Watchmen co-star Jackie Earle Haley -- and Haley says he likes the idea. -- ComingSoon.net, Hollywood Reporter, MTV Movies Blog

5. Paramount Vantage and Comedy Central have acquired the rights to Ghosts/Aliens, a "supernatural comedy novel" about "two pothead friends who set out on a quest to discover both ghosts and aliens". This story is presumably not to be confused with Monsters Vs. Aliens, which will be distributed in a few weeks by sister company Paramount and DreamWorks Animation. -- Hollywood Reporter

6. Chris Columbus's production company has bought the rights to the graphic novel Welcome to Hoxford, which concerns "a psychiatrist who must team with a deeply disturbed patient in order to escape werewolves who run an institution for the criminally insane." -- Variety

7. Columbia Pictures is developing a third Ghostbusters movie -- yes, 20 years after the last one came out -- but contrary to all the rumours out there, it will not be produced by Judd Apatow. Meanwhile, co-star and series co-creator Dan Aykroyd says the cameras could be rolling as early as "late fall 2009". -- Patrick Goldstein, Boston Globe

8. MGM has bought the comedy screenplay Once Upon a Time ..., which is described as a "humorous quest story" that "plays with fairy-tale convention in the vein of the 'Shrek' movies and 'The Princess Bride.'" -- Hollywood Reporter

9. Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, which stars Heath Ledger in his final role as "a traveling magician who gives customers more than they bargained for," has not yet been able to secure an American distributor. -- Hollywood Reporter

Related Tags: eclipse, friday the 13th, ghostbusters, ghosts/aliens, imaginarium of doctor parnassus, new moon, nightmare on elm street, once upon a time, percy jackson, sorcerer's apprentice, twilight, welcome to hoxford