The vision and triumph of christopher paolini

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The vision and triumph of christopher paolini

ERAGON, a fantasy adventure for young people based on the phenomenallysuccessful novel by Christopher Paolini – the first book in the young author’s epicInheritance Trilogy – is a timeless yet modern tale.The book’s most fantastical character – a flying dragon named Saphira – arrivesvia the high-tech wizardry of the industry’s most honored visual effects houses: WETADigital (the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, “King Kong”) and Industrial Light & Magic (the“Star Wars” films, “Jurassic Park”). In addition, WETA created ERAGON’s climacticand massive battle scene, in which the forces of good, led by the young Dragon RiderEragon and Saphira, battle the armies of the evil King Galbatorix.For over two millennia, dragons have been – depending on the culture and times –beloved, feared, or even worshipped. Today, the mythical creatures are a mainstay ofpop culture. ERAGON’s Saphira is inspired by the rich heritage of the storied wingedcreatures, but for the first time, the power of state-of-the-art computer generated imagerybrings myth to photo-real, emotional life. What “Jurassic Park” was to dinosaurs,ERAGON is to dragons. Indeed, Saphira is a step beyond the dinosaurs of “JurassicPark,” as her facial imagery conveys thoughts and feelings.THE VISION AND TRIUMPH OF CHRISTOPHER PAOLINI: BRINGINGERAGON TO THE SCREENUpon its initial release in hardcover by Knopf in August 2003, the novel Eragonbecame a worldwide publishing phenomenon. The book was an instant bestseller and hassince spent 87 consecutive weeks on The New York Times Bestseller List, and 21consecutive months on Publisher’s Weekly Young Adult Fiction Bestseller List,including nine months at #1. Eragon has sold 2.5 million copies in hardcover andpaperback in North America alone, and the book has been published in 38 countries.


Eragon is the first novel of a trilogy. The second book, Eldest, was published inthe United States and Canada in August 2005, and quickly became the number-oneselling book in the United States. It has sold over one million hardcover copies, wasnumber-one on The New York Times Children’s Best Seller list, and was a USA TodayTop-50 Bestseller. It won the Young Adult/Teen 2006 Quill Book Award.At the time of release of the ERAGON motion picture, the novel Eragon held thenumber-one slot on The New York Times Children’s Paperback Best Seller List, andEldest was number-one on the Times’ Children’s Hardcover Best Seller List. Sales ofboth books increased steadily with the release of the Eldest Limited Edition the move tieinbooks – and with the help of the film’s promotional activities.Paolini’s own story is a fantasy in itself. The first edition of Eragon was selfpublishedby his family. The following year, Alfred A. Knopf published the novelworldwide, to huge acclaim.Paolini, now 22, grew up in Paradise Valley, Montana – a location which inspiredmuch of the story’s fantastic environments. His novels reflect his personal experiencesgrowing up in a valley of the Beartooth Mountains of Montana, not unlike the valley thatEragon called home.Screenwriter Peter Buchman, whose credits include “Jurassic Park III,” wrote thescreenplay. Buchman, a fan of fantasy and science fiction literature and films, says hewas “blown away” by the author’s precociousness, his mastery of plot lines andcharacters, and his ability to create several completely imaginary worlds. Buchmanworked hard to serve the richness of Paolini’s story and characters – and the book’slegions of fans – while crafting a screenplay that would attract newcomers to the world ofERAGON.At the center of both novel and film is the bond between Eragon and Saphira.“Christopher came up with this wonderful idea of a young man who develops a bondwith a dragon,” says Buchman. “That relationship is at the core of the book, and that’swhat we had to translate to film.”It was Buchman’s script that drew the attention of Stefen Fangmeier. “I found itto be an exciting read,” says the director. “With the book’s fantastical aspects, people2


would look at me in terms of the visual effects requirements. However, my first reactionto the material was that it was a great story that had an emotional arc.”ERAGON presents a mythology in which Dragon Riders had once brought peaceand prosperity to the land of Alagaësia. Dragons gave their Riders magical powers, evenimmortality. No enemy could defeat them – until one of their own, Galbatorix, decidedto take all the power for himself and cut down the Dragon Riders. But with Eragon’sdiscovery of a gleaming sapphire egg, which hatches a dragon he names Saphira, the timeof the Dragon Riders has come again.Having discovered his true path as a Dragon Rider, and with the help of hismentor Brom, Eragon is determined to bring back the golden age of justice once knownthroughout the land, if he can survive the machinations of King Galbatorix. Eragon isswept into a world of magic and power, becoming a true hero to – and the last hope of –the people of Alagaësia.Taking on the title role is newcomer Ed Speleers, 18, who got the part afterTwentieth Century Fox and the filmmakers conducted a worldwide casting search, whichrivaled the hunt for a cinematic “Harry Potter” and included hundreds of auditions anddozens of screen tests.The film also stars Academy Award® winner Jeremy Irons as Brom, a formerDragon Rider who becomes Eragon’s mentor; Oscar® nominee John Malkovich as thepowerful and evil King Galbatorix; BAFTA Award winner Robert Carlyle as thepowerful sorcerer Durza; Oscar nominee Djimon Hounsou as Ajihad, the leader of therebel Varden; Sienna Guillory as the beautiful warrior Arya; and Garrett Hedlund as ayoung man with a past.Befitting Saphira’s regal bearing, one of today’s finest actors – Academy Awardwinner Rachel Weisz – provides the dragon’s “voice.” Weisz’s performance brings tolife Christopher Paolini’s key idea for the novel: the method by which Saphiracommunicates with Eragon. Saphira does not speak; her lips never move as they wouldwith a traditional CG character. Instead, the dragon connects telepathically with herRider, which reinforces the emotional, almost spiritual bond between the two characters.ERAGON is directed by Stefen Fangmeier, one of the motion picture industry’strue visual effects geniuses. During his tenure at Industrial Light & Magic, Fangmeier3


supervised films such as “Saving Private Ryan,” “Twister,” “The Perfect Storm” and“Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World.” He is a three-time BAFTA Awardwinner, and is a four-time Oscar nominee.For ERAGON, Fangmeier’s visual effects teams employ every state-of-the-arttechnique to create Saphira and take the audience to the magical, timeless world ofAlagaësia – not forward to a futuristic science fiction creation. Under his direction, WolfKroeger’s production design, Hugh Johnson’s cinematography, and Kym Barrett’s sleekcostumes, give the film a contemporary edge.THE CASTFor the filmmakers, the stakes couldn’t have been higher in casting their youngDragon Rider, Eragon. Newcomer Ed Speleers emerged from the months-long,worldwide casting search. “Ed came in [to the casting session], and we just looked ateach other and said, ‘That’s Eragon, that’s the guy from the book,’” says director StefenFangmeier: “I got a strong sense of Ed’s sparkle, of his life. It’s the kind of thing whereyou just know he’s destined to become a movie star.”Speleers won the role as he was trying to learn his lines for a school production of“Hamlet.” He couldn’t help but be awed by this, his professional acting debut. “Duringproduction in Slovakia, we were lifted by helicopter to the top of a large mountainsurrounded by incredible scenery,” he remembers. “I stood at the edge of this mountain,thinking, ‘What’s going on here? I’m supposed to be at school taking my exams, and I’mhere having the best time of my life.’ If I continue to make movies – which I would loveto do – I don’t think I will ever get that same, overwhelming feeling.”The young actor easily grew into the role. Indeed, Speleers sees parallels betweenhis experiences making ERAGON and his on-screen character’s journey. “I was on anew adventure, just like Eragon was,” he explains. “I had a well-structured life, doingregular things, and then I was suddenly thrown into this incredible world, starring in amovie. It’s been a great time for me to find myself (as Eragon does in the story), meetnew people, and have new experiences.”A highlight of Speleers’ experiences on ERAGON was working opposite JeremyIrons, who portrays Eragon’s mentor, Brom. The actors’ off-screen relationship mirrored4


what was happening on camera. “Jeremy always provided words of advice, and alwaysnurtured me,” Speleers recalls. “He was doing so out of the kindness of his heart, but atthe same time so much of Brom was in Jeremy.”Irons says he was ready to tackle a big action-adventure picture. “ERAGONreaches an audience that I haven’t reached in a while,” he says. “Equally important,Brom appealed to me; he has a wryness and fierceness, but at the same time he’s a goodman.”To prepare for the role, Irons read Eragon, and trained in the method ofswordplay Paolini describes in his book. “It’s a specific style of fighting,” Irons notes.“It’s like Eastern swordplay, and is more esoteric than English medieval styles. Ipracticed almost every day to build the wrist strength necessary to realistically play thefighting scenes.” The many riding scenes were less of a challenge to Irons, anexperienced horseman.Brom’s and Eragon’s fates are closely tied to the evil King Galbatorix, played byOscar-nominee John Malkovich. Galbatorix is a central character in the film, one whosepresence and menace are felt even when he’s offscreen.Although Malkovich shares no scenes with Ed Speleers, the young actor and hisgrowing following made a distinct impression on him. “Before leaving for Budapest, afriend of mine told me that he had a bunch of kids who wanted Ed’s autograph,” herecounts. “I hadn’t experienced anything like that since working with LeonardoDiCaprio [in “The Man in the Iron Mask”].The chief “aide” to Malkovich’s Galbatorix is Durza, a sorcerer possessed withdemonic spirits. Durza is tall, handsome and pale, with red hair and maroon eyes. He islordly in manner, but his refinement masks something unnatural.BAFTA Award-winner Robert Carlyle, as Durza, made a strong impression on EdSpeleers. “Our first meeting was intense,” says Speleers. “Robert wore a long wig,contact lenses and full-flowing outfit. I didn’t need to get into character to react oppositeRobert as Durza,” laughs Speleers. “He was Durza!”“Robert came in very much wanting to do ERAGON, and his approach to Durzawas to not make the character obvious and over-the-top in his villainy,” says WyckGodfrey. “Durza has an agenda and with his red eyes and hair, and pale skin, there are5


things visually apparent about the character; you don’t need to work hard to force him tobe evil.”Early in the story, Durza uses his formidable powers to try and stop the femalewarrior Arya, who’s on a mission to find the next Dragon Rider. “Arya has beenentrusted with a dragon egg stolen from Galbatorix, carrying it across Alagaësia lookingfor its owner,” says Sienna Guillory, who portrays Arya. “Her warrior side uses a Zenlikefighting style. Because she’s an elf, she understands nature – the trees, light andwind – and is capable of seeing danger before it happens.“It’s great to play a female action role that’s not all ‘hero’ and that’s not roughand unfeminine,” she continues. “I love horses and this was a film where I got to ride ahorse and fight with a sword – brilliant!”Guillory makes special note of the work of costume designer Kym Barrett, whomthe actress says “brings a wonderful modernity and edge” to the picture. “Kym’s workreflects the timelessness of the film,” Guillory elaborates. “It’s not about being medievalor going back to another period in the past. Kym’s designs for Arya are about ecologyand the environment. Arya is a kind of eco-warrior, who is in tune with nature.Everything she wears look and feels worn and soft. Kym really works amazingly wellwith movement.”Arya and Eragon take a stand against Galbatorix, Durza, and their minions in thefinal battle of Farthen Dûr. This stronghold of the rebel Varden forces is led by Ajihad,played by Oscar nominee Djimon Hounsou. “I was attracted to ERAGON because it isan enormous adventure,” the actor explains. “Everything about it is bigger than life.”Also taking a stand at Farthen Dûr is Murtagh, played by Garrett Hedlund, one ofthe few Americans in the cast. Like several of his fellow castmates, Hedlund underwentintensive physical training, including boxing and working with a long bow. But Hedlundnotes that it was what’s underneath the character’s skin that intrigued him. “There’ssomething about Murtagh that lies under the surface,” he explains. “Murtagh has a secretand a past he’s not necessarily proud of.”6


SAPHIRAERAGON’s distinguished cast is impressive, but the filmmakers acknowledge thepicture’s “biggest” – and most expensive – star is the dragon Saphira. ChristopherPaolini has said that he wanted Saphira to be “the best friend anyone could have.” Inorder to pull off such a character, the filmmakers realized they needed someone tocompletely “own” Saphira, both creatively and technically, and to serve as the pointperson between themselves and the facilities.Visual Effects Supervisor Michael McAlister became that person and served,among other things, as the arbiter of the dragon. “Bringing Saphira to life was a hugeundertaking that required my full attention and energies – much as a live action characterrequires the full attention of an actor,” says McAlister. “There were thousands andthousands of specific decisions to be made in terms of how she would look, how shewould act, how she would feel, and how she would fly. I did not invent her nor decidewhat her character would be, but I was responsible for understanding her – inside and out– and deciding specifically how we would achieve her.”Constant communication between the filmmakers and visual effects facilities wasthe key, and McAlister likened himself to the skinny part of an hourglass. “With a hopperof desire above me and an army of eager and talented artists below, I took the broaddesires of the filmmakers and focused them into instructions the others could act on. Amajor part of my job was to make specific decisions regarding Saphira, and keep thosedecisions clear to all parties so that the efforts of the hundreds of artists were in constantalignment with the desires of the filmmakers.”Under McAlister’s supervision, the artists and technicians at the renowned visualeffects houses Industrial Light & Magic and WETA Digital, have created nothing lessthan the most dynamic, expressive dragon in motion picture history.Samir Hoon was the ILM visual effects supervisor and Glen McIntosh was ILM’sanimation director. McIntosh, who helped create the performances for Yoda and GeneralGrievous in “Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith,” coordinated the team of ILManimators. “The tricky part in creating the performance was that Saphira was nevermeant to be a monster or creature,” notes McIntosh. “She is a character and one of thestars of the movie. She delivers a nuanced, layered performance.”7


WETA Digital animation supervisior David Clayton, working with WETA visualeffects supervisors George Murphy and Guy Williams, made additional characterrefinements, especially for the climactic battle scene in which Saphira becomes like asleek and powerful jet fighter.Saphira’s complexity of character and design stemmed from an “evolutionary”process – from the stylized artwork that adorned the book’s cover to the first moviecharacter sketches to the final imagery we see on film. “The big question we faced,” saysILM’s Samir Hoon, “was, ‘How do we make a dragon that the audience has never beforeseen and still be consistent with Christopher Paolini’s vision of the character?’Saphira’s design evolved as we discovered the character through the color of herwings, the size of her head, and the length of her neck. We see her emerge from the eggas being ten-inches tall. By the end of the film, she stands fifteen feet, with a wing spanof 20-30 feet, length of 32 feet – and weighing about four tons.”After many renderings and tests, the visual effects artists gave Saphira a slim,graceful look, adhering to the character’s feminine and regal qualities. “She moves andwalks like a lion, with front legs almost equal in length to her back legs,” says McIntosh,who notes that he and the ILM animators spent time studying lion movement.The design of Saphira’s wings evolved into that resembling eagle wings. Butinstead of the more classic look of feathers, Saphira’s wings are a combination of scalesand feathers, which the ILM team dubbed “scethers.”Saphira begins life as a hatchling, which the filmmakers endeavored to make asendearing as possible. To that end, Hoon and his team studied wildebeest cubs, lioncubs, and wolf cubs.THE BATTLE OF FARTHEN DÛRERAGON has many grand set pieces, but none as big as The Battle of FarthenDûr, where Urgals and Galbatorix’s elite army attack the Varden stronghold. The battlemarks the end of Eragon’s journey and the climax of the story.As the battle opens, Eragon and Saphira are helping fight off the king’s invadingtroops – leading to an aerial battle between Eragon and Durza, with Eragon atop Saphira,and Durza riding an enormous beast conjured from the dead soldiers on the ground8


elow. The ground battle, involving hundreds of extras and stunt people captured on filmduring principal photography, as well as the CG extensions added during postproduction,provides a backdrop for the aerial conflict – all under a dramatic moonlit sky.As the massive conflict unfolds, Farthen Dûr becomes nothing less than a vast theater ofdestruction.As described in the story, the Varden stronghold is constructed in the crater of anextinct volcano. Against the cliff face are the remnants of an eroded white marble city,stoic ruins of a time past, built into the volcano wall, stretching and twisting a mile high.Under the supervision of production designer Wolf Kroeger, the filmmakers builtone of the biggest practical sets in motion picture history. The set was too spectacular toerect on a soundstage, so the production, after conducting several scouting expeditions,found an abandoned rock quarry and crater at a volcano in Hungary, near the Austriaborder. “That location worked out very well,” says Kroeger, since it’s written in thescript that Farthen Dûr is in a volcanic area.”Before construction could begin on this massive set, the filmmakers had to buildan access road to get to the top of the crater. It took 16 weeks of planning, building andlandscaping to create the set from an empty quarry into a lived-in community.Peter MacDonald, one of the industry’s top second unit directors and actionspecialists – he worked on two “Superman” films, two “Batman” pictures and four“Harry Potter” blockbusters – collaborated with Stefen Fangmeier to bring the epic battleto life. “We wanted to give the sequence an edgy, combat-like feel,” notes MacDonald, adirector in his own right.To capture the action, MacDonald worked with 450 extras and stunt people, 10hours each night – often during frigid conditions (it was winter) – for several weeks.The sequence involves Urgals (who are uncommonly tall) and elves; many of the “Urgal”extras were 6’6” or taller, with those playing elves 5’0” or less.The decision to shoot at night presented challenges to director of photographyHugh Johnson. “The location was a vast area with terraces and it was very difficult to getany lights up there,” says Johnson, whose department went to elaborate lengths to rig thevolcanic crater’s vast and treacherous spaces – employing a team of Russianmountaineers to haul the equipment.9


For this sequence, Kym Barrett designed non-traditional costumes, this time of“armor.” “I thought of what armor would be like in this particular world,” says Barrett.“In this scene, Eragon rides Saphira and fights the invading forces, and he couldn’t belugging around 25 pounds of armor plating. I also didn’t want the characters to look likethey were wearing big, clunky suits of armor. I wanted it to be more streamlined, so Iused leather for the armor.” Barrett called in noted London couture leather makers tomanufacture the unique pieces.The completion of the second unit work in Hungary marked only the first step inthe scene’s creation. Fangmeier, MacDonald and crew then moved to Pinewood Studiosin England, where they shot blue screen work of Ed Speleers “riding” Saphira, battlingRobert Carlyle’s Durza who is astride his own flying Beast. The filmmakers wanted topush these flying scenes to get, as MacDonald says, “the most dynamic sensationpossible. It’s a real roller-coaster ride.”The actors were placed on computer-controlled rigs on hydraulics, upon whichsaddles were mounted. All the dragon’s movements – flying, gliding, banks-and-turns –could be experienced by Ed Speleers as Eragon. “Ed was a natural,” says MacDonald.“He loved flying, and really wanted to get things right.” Before Speleers began work onthe motion rig, the filmmakers screened for him the pre-visualization footage as areference for his “flying” maneuvers.“ERAGON is the first film to really show the experience of flying on a dragon,”says Fangmeier. “It was a lot of fun to create the flying sequences. We were challengedto maintain a physical reality but also have an element of the fantastical. We wanteddragon riding to feel like being on a jet fighter – with lots of ‘Wow’ moments.”Many of these “wow” moments were realized by New Zealand-based visualeffects house WETA Digital, whose many credits include the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy,“King Kong” and “I, Robot.” For the climactic Battle of Farthen Dûr sequence, WETAworked on giving Saphira a more aggressive “performance.” “She’s taking on a moremature air at this point; she’s come of age,” says WETA visual effects supervisor GeorgeMurphy. “We gave Saphira an additional sense of command, presence and agility thatwould get her through the battle.”10


“We developed Saphira in a physical way,” adds WETA visual effects supervisorGuy Williams. “We have lots of views of her wings that occur during the battle, whichare different from those of other scenes.” Williams and Murphy also made the dragoncombat-ready, with an impressive suit of armor.In creating the lighting environments for the battle sequence, Williams andMurphy’s goal, again, was to have audiences connect with Saphira, as they would withthe film’s human characters. They devised a realistic yet striking look for shots of hersoaring majestically through the night – or conducting “strafing runs” on the enemyforces. “If we had relied only on light that was available, we’d have ended up with acouple of highlights of Saphira from the moon and that’s about it,” notes Murphy. “Sowe came up with a color palette and levels that render Saphira visible, while reinforcingthe fact that this is happening at night.”Murphy and Williams also created the fearsome creature that Durza conjures upout of the essence of the dead troops below. The Beast battles Saphira in an epic airborneduel. As described in the script, the conjured creature is a methodical killing machinebereft of fear or remorse. It is an enormous, dark, broiling cloud of smoke and ash – theface of death itself.“Durza’s Beast provides a sharp physical contrast to Saphira’s naturalistic look,”says Williams. “The beast is a completely task-built creature – a flying mouth of teeth,oversized head and teeth, and no legs. If you combined a large tarantula with a bat, thenadded a bull’s head with vampire teeth, you’d have the Beast.”“The character’s design came quickly,” adds Murphy, “but developing thetechnology to render it was a challenge due to the inherent difficulties in‘choreographing’ smoke, and action amongst the smoke.”WETA created effects extensions for the practical Hungary sets for the battle.“We had to master the exact terrain of the practical set so that we could match intoportions of the live-action footage,” says Williams. “All our action biases more towardsone side of the volcano, which is visually more interesting because we’re closer to thevolcano walls and get an enhanced sense of Saphira’s flying speed.”WETA worked on another big action sequence that combines spectacle withemotion, further exploring the connection between Eragon and Saphira, and a moving act11


of personal sacrifice. “We get to explore Saphira’s softer, gentler side in this scene,” saysWilliams. “We pushed and refined her facial animation, keeping her movements verysubtle, and letting the moments work for themselves.”In a magical moment that propels the character and story forward, WETA createda sequence in which Saphira undergoes a metamorphosis from adolescence to adulthood.The visual effects from WETA and ILM, along with the exotic and ruggedlocations in Hungary and Slovakia, created the illusion of Alagaësia. ERAGON was oneof the biggest productions ever to be filmed in Hungary and Slovakia.The production crew of over-500 was headquartered in the historic city ofBudapest. The set for Garrow’s Farm, where Eragon lived with his Uncle Garrow andcousin Roran, was built on privately owned land in a valley at Budakesi, a forty-fiveminute drive from Budapest.The production constructed Galbatorix’s lair in a hillside cave, with accessavailable only through a hole in the cave’s roof. Special cranes were used to moveequipment – including cameras, sound recorders and set dressing – into the cave. Onceinside the cave, the filmmakers’ activities were limited due to the area’s status as anational monument. Later, the mountains of Slovakia would provide a number of naturalsettings with spectacular views across valleys, gorges and waterfalls.These worlds and characters created by these locations, effects artists, technicians,craftsmen, filmmakers and actors stem from the imagination of Christopher Paolini,whose novel is linked to the film in an unexpected way. "I originally conceivedERAGON as a movie,” he points out. “I saw the characters and action clearly in mymind. But since I didn't have the money to produce a film, I ended up writing the story asa book.”At the time, it was beyond Paolini’s wildest dreams that a major studio wouldadapt his epic tale. But then, Paolini’s own life story, his imagination – and the journey ofhis heroic title character – remind us that no dream is too big.12


ERAGON CHARACTER PROFILESERAGONEragon discovers his true path as one of the fabled Dragon Riders. With his own dragon, Saphira,and Brom as his mentor, Eragon is determined to bring back the golden age of justice once knownthroughout the land – if he can survive the evil machinations of Galbatorix. Eragon becomes atrue hero – and the last hope for the people of Alagëisia.BROMOne of the last of the Dragon Riders, Brom has been a disconsolate, broken man since the deathof his own dragon. He has become a storyteller resigned to the rule of the evil king, but he hasnew hope as the mentor and father-figure to Eragon.GALBATORIXGalbatorix is the ruler of an enormous empire that occupies the western part of Alagaësia. Theformer Dragon Rider brought about the demise of the storied order, and he now rules the landwith an iron fist, stopping at nothing to capture or destroy Eragon and his dragon. Galbatorix’sforces include the loathsome and brutish Urgals, whose faces are grotesquely patterned withscars.DURZADurza is a Shade, a sorcerer possessed by demonic spirits. Considered one of the most powerfulbeings in Alagëisia, he can only be killed through the heart. As one of Galbatorix’s deadliestminions, the sorcerer is privy to palace intrigues (and possibly has dreams of power of his own).AJIHADAjihad is the leader and general of the rebel Varden. In the secret stronghold of Farthen Dûr,located in a volcanic crater in the Beor Mountains, Ajihad and the Varden plot to overthrowGalbatorix.ARYAAs the guardian of the dragon egg, the beautiful warrior Arya is willing to die to protect the lineof dragons. She joins Eragon, Saphira, and the rebellious Varden in a desperate stand against theforces of Galbatorix.MURTAGHMurtagh is the son of Morzan, who betrayed the Dragon Riders to Galbatorix. Desperate toexpunge the guilt of his father’s sin, Murtagh seeks refuge in battle, fighting for the forces ofgood.SAPHIRAThe story’s most fantastical character is the flying dragon Saphira, who connects telepathicallywith her Rider, Eragon. As Saphira soars majestically through the sky – or conducts “strafingruns” on enemy forces – audiences will experience the most dynamic, fierce dragon ever, in theultimate dragon movie.13


ERAGON: GLOSSARYAlagaësia: a kingdom stretching from the western coastal wilderness of the Spine into the inlandHadarac desert, which spreads to the southern summits of the Beor Mountains. It is a world ofhumans, sorcerers, monsters – and mighty dragons.The Ancient Language: a form of communication that enables certain people to use magic.Beor Mountains: a huge mountain range in the southeast of Alagaësia, where the Varden maketheir home.Carvahall: Eragon’s hometown; a small town near the Spine.Dragon Riders: those who help maintain peace in Alagaësia with the help of their dragons.Gil’ead: a heavily guarded city where Arya is imprisoned by Durza.Ra’zac: demonic mercenaries that serve Durza.Shade: a sorcerer possessed by evil spirits.Spine, The: Vast mountain range covering almost all of Alagaësia’s west coast.Urgals: loathsome and brutish troops who serve Galbatorix. Their faces are grotesquelypatterned with scars.Varden: a group of rebels based in Farthen Dûr.Zar'roc: Eragon's sword, given to him by Brom.14


ABOUT THE CASTED SPELEERS (Eragon), 18, won the title role of ERAGON after TwentiethCentury Fox and the filmmakers conducted a worldwide casting search, which rivaled thehunt for a cinematic “Harry Potter” and included hundreds of auditions and dozens ofscreen tests.Speleers, who hails from South England, landed the part following a half-houraudition – and only days before the start of principal photography.Previously, he had appeared in amateur school productions. Speleers hascompleted his schooling, and is looking forward to continuing his acting career.JEREMY IRONS (Brom) began his career in England in theatre at the BristolOld Vic and then debuted in London in Godspell as John the Baptist. His work in theWest End and at Stratford Upon Avon culminated with his performance of “Richard II”for the Royal Shakespeare Company. He made his Broadway debut in Tom Stoppard’s“The Real Thing” opposite Glenn Close, for which he won both the Drama LeagueAward and Tony® Award for Best Actor.Irons has played many roles for television, most notably “Love for Lydia” andPaolini Hampton’s “Tales from Hollywood.” His performance in “Brideshead Revisited”brought him worldwide acclaim and nominations for an Emmy® Award, the BritishAcademy and he received a Golden Globe® Award for Best Actor. In 1996, he directedand co-starred with his wife, actress Sinead Cusack in “Mirad, A Boy from Bosnia,” aChannel 4 Television film about refugees, written by Ad De Bont. In 1997 Irons won anEmmy for Outstanding Voice-Over for: "The Great War and the Shaping of the 20thCentury.” In 2006 Irons co-starred with Helen Mirren in HBO’s Elizabeth I. Ironsportrayal as the Earl of Leicester won him the Emmy for best supporting actor in aminiseries.On the big screen he has starred in such films as Jerzy Skolimowski’s“Moonlighting,” Harold Pinter’s “Betrayal,” Volker Schlondorff’s “Swann in Love” andThe Mission” with Robert De Niro. Irons played opposite Meryl Streep in “The FrenchLieutenant’s Woman,” for which he received the Variety Club Award for Best Actor anda BAFTA nomination, and opposite his son Sam in Roald Dahl’s “Danny, Champion of15


the World.” His performance in David Cronenberg’s “Dead Ringers” brought him a BestActor Award from the New York Film Critics Circle and a Canadian Genie. Irons starredagain with Glenn Close in the film based on the re-trial of Claus von Bulow, “Reversal ofFortune.” For this performance, Irons received the 1990 Academy Award and GoldenGlobe Award for Best Actor.Irons went on to work in such films as Steven Soderbergh’s “Kafka,” DavidCronenberg’s “M. Butterfly” and Bille August’s “The House of the Spirits,” with Streepand Close again. In 1994, Irons created the voice of Scar for Disney’s “The Lion King.”He followed that with the action film “Die Hard with a Vengeance” also starring BruceWillis, and Bernardo Bertolucci’s “Stealing Beauty,” also starring Liv Tyler.Irons more recent films include Wayne Wang’s “Chinese Box,” andThe Man inthe Iron Mask,” in which he starred with Gerard Depardieu, Leonardo DiCaprio, andJohn Malkovich. He played Humbert Humbert in Adrian Lyne’s controversial film“Lolita” and starred in “Longitude,” an A&E Granada film that premiered on BBC. Ironshad four films in 2001, including “And Now…Ladies and Gentleman,” directed byClaude Lelouch, “The Time Machine,” based on the H.G. Wells novel, “Callas Forever,”directed by Franco Zeffirelli, and “Last Call,” a Showtime Original Picture directed byHenry Bromell, also starring Neve Campbell.He also starred in István Szabó’s “Being Julia” with Annette Bening. In late 2004Irons played Antonio, in Michael Radford’s production of Shakespeare’s “Merchant ofVenice,” also starring Al Pacino. In spring 2005 Ridley Scott’s “Kingdom of Heaven”was released, in which Irons starred opposite Orlando Bloom. In Lasse Hallström’s“Casanova,” released Christmas 2005, Irons starred opposite Heath Ledger. Ironsrecently completed the upcoming feature “Inland Empire,” directed by David Lynch.In 2003 Irons returned to his roots in theatre and debuted in the New York CityOpera production of Stephen Sondheim’s “A Little Night Music” in the role of Frederik,directed by Scott Ellis. Irons played King Arthur in the Hollywood Bowl’s summerpresentation of “Camelot,” part of the Hollywood Bowl’s weekend spectacular series. InFebruary 2006 Irons starred as Henrik in “Embers,” a play by Paolini Hampton, directedby Michael Blakemore.16


SIENNA GUILLORY (Arya) is best known to American audiences for her workin the acclaimed miniseries “Helen of Troy,” in which she played the title role. She hasstarred in the film “Resident Evil: Apocalyspe,” “The Time Machine,” and a featured rolein “Love, Actually.”After appearing on the British miniseries “The Buccanneers,” and severalindependent films, Guillory got her big break when she won the starring role in the BBCadaptation of Kingsley Amis' “Take a Girl Like You.” Guillory has since starred onLondon's West End in Neil La Bute's “The Shape of Things” and continued to work withindependent U.K-based filmmakers on productions such as “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang,”“Late Night Shopping,” “The Principles of Lust” and “Silence Becomes You.”She recently starred opposite Academy Award nominee Catalina Sandino Morenoin the Spanish independent film “Hearts of the Earth.”ROBERT CARLYLE (Durza) was born in Glasgow, Scotland and enrolled inacting classes at the Glasgow Arts Centre after reading Arthur Miller’s “The Crucible.”Following his movie debut as Big Woodsy in “Silent Scream” (1990), Carlyleappeared in several films, but it was his performance in the title role of the TV series“Hamish Macbeth” (1995) that brought him to the attention of British audiences. And itwas the role of Begbie in “Trainspotting” (1996) that introduced him to Americanaudiences. This was followed by his BAFTA-winning role of Gaz in “The Full Monty”(1997).After playing Plunkett in “Plunkett & Macleane” and Col. Ives in “Ravenous”(both 1999), he played the villain, Renard, in the James Bond adventure “The World IsNot Enough” (1999), followed by the roles of Malachy in “Angela’s Ashes” (1999) andDaffy in “The Beach” (2000).More recently, he has been seen in “There’s Only One Jimmy Grimble” (2000),“To End All Wars,” “The 51 st State” (both 2001), “Once Upon a Time in the Midlands,”“Black and White” (both 2002), “Dead Fish” (2004), “Marilyn Hotchkiss’ BallroomDancing and Charm School” andThe Mighty Celt” (both 2005).17


His recent TV appearances have been the title role in “Hitler: The Rise of Evil”(2003) and King James 1 in “Gunpowder, Treason and Plot” (2004). He portrayed therole of Sergei Karpovich in the TV miniseries “Human Trafficking” (2005).Carlyle founded the Raindog theatre company in 1991, together with four otheractors, and is a partner in the British film production company 4 Ways. He was awardedan OBE in the 1999 New Year’s Honours List.DJIMON HOUNSOU (Ajihad) was born in Benin, Africa. At age 13, he movedto Paris, where he was discovered by French fashion designer Thierry Mugler andsubsequently graced the catwalks of Paris and London as a popular male model.After making his movie debut in “Without You I’m Nothing” (1990), Hounsouappeared in “Unlawful Entry” (1992), “Stargate” (1994) andThe Small Hours” (1997)before playing the role of Cinque in “Amistad” (1997), a performance that brought him tothe attention of international audiences. He went on to appear in “Ill Gotten Gains”(1997) and “Deep Rising” (1998).He then played the role of Juba in Ridley Scott’s “Gladiator” (2000) beforeappearing in “Passage du Milieu” (2000), “The Tag” (2001), “Le Boulet” andThe FourFeathers” (both 2002). His performance as Mateo in “In America” (2002) brought himan Academy Award nomination.He went on to play leading roles in “Heroes” (2001), “Biker Boys,” “Lara CroftTomb Raider: The Cradle of Life” (both 2003), “Blueberry” (2004), “Constantine,”“Beauty Shop” andThe Island” (all 2005). He has a starring role opposite LeonardoDiCaprio in the drama “Blood Diamond,” directed by Edward Zwick.GARRETT HEDLUND (Murtagh) was born in Roseau, Minnesota, and spenthis early years growing up on a farm. When his family moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, hebegan taking private acting lessons. After graduating high school, Hedlund moved to LosAngeles to pursue an acting career.One month later he landed the role of Achilles’ cousin Patroclus in the movie“Troy” (2004) opposite Brad Pitt. His next feature was “Friday Night Lights” (2004) inwhich Hedlund played a high school football player.18


He then landed a starring role opposite Mark Wahlberg in “Four Brothers”(2005), playing one of four brothers whose mother is murdered.Academy Award-winning actress RACHEL WEISZ (voice of Saphira) is knownfor portraying women of incredible spirit and intelligence and continues to seek outchallenging projects and roles both on screen and on stage.Weisz received overwhelming critical praise and awards from Screen ActorsGuild, Golden Globe and ultimately an Oscar for her performance in "The ConstantGardener," directed by Fernando Meirelles ("City of God") and based on the best-sellingJohn le Carré novel.Weisz currently stars in Darren Aronofsky's much-anticipated sci-fi/romanticfantasy adventure, "The Fountain," opposite Hugh Jackman.She recently wrapped production on "My Blueberry Nights" directed by WongKar Wei. The romantic comedy also stars Jude Law, Norah Jones and Natalie Portmanand is the story of a young woman (Jones) who travels across America to find the truemeaning of love while encountering offbeat characters along the way.Weisz is currently shooting Working Title's comedy "Definitely, Maybe," writtenand directed by Adam Brooks. Weisz will begin filming the dramedy "Smart People,"written by Mark Poirier, this fall starring opposite Dennis Quaid and Thomas HadenChurch. Noam Murro, 2005 DGA Director of the Year, will make his feature directorialdebut. Later in the year Weisz is also set to star in the international con man adventure"The Brothers Bloom," written and directed by Rian JohnsonPast film credits include Francis Lawrence's hit thriller Constantine, Gary Fleder's"Runaway Jury"; James Foley's "Confidence"; and Chris and Paul Weitz' "About a Boy."She is known to audiences worldwide for her lead role opposite Brendan Fraser inStephen Sommers' blockbuster movies "The Mummy" and "The Mummy Returns."Weisz also starred in Jean-Jacques Annaud's "Enemy at the Gates"; MichaelWinterbottom's "I Want You"; David Leland's "The Land Girls"; Beeban Kidron's"Swept from the Sea"; and Bernardo Bertolucci's "Stealing Beauty."Weisz received critical acclaim for Focus Features "The Shape of Things" whichalso marked her first venture into producing. She had previously starred in writer/director19


Neil LaBute's staging of his original play of the same name, in both London and NewYork City.Her performance in Sean Mathias' U.K. staging of "Noel Coward's Design forLiving" garnered her the London Drama Critics Circle Award for OutstandingNewcomer. She also starred in the West End production of "Suddenly Last Summer",directed by Mathias. Weisz began her career as a student at Cambridge University whereshe formed the Talking Tongues Theatre Group, which performed numerousexperimental pieces and won the prestigious Guardian Award at the Edinburgh Festival.JOHN MALKOVICH (King Galbatorix) joined Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatrein 1976 and made his New York stage debut seven years later in “True West,” aperformance that won him an Obie®. In 1984 he appeared with Dustin Hoffman in theBroadway revival of “Death of a Salesman,” which earned him an Emmy when it wasmade into a TV movie the following year.His movie debut was as the blind lodger in “Places in the Heart” (1984), aperformance that earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor.Next came “The Killing Fields” (1984) andThe Glass Menagerie” (1987). Afterplaying Vicomte de Valmont in the costume drama “Dangerous Liaisons” (1988), he wascast as the psychotic political assassin in Clint Eastwood’s film “In the Line of Fire”(1993), for which he was nominated for the Academy Award and the Golden Globe.A prolific and versatile actor, Malkovich has appeared in a wide variety of rolesin films such as “Mulholland Falls” (1996), “The Man in the Iron Mask” (1998), “BeingJohn Malkovich” (1999), “Shadow of the Vampire” (2000), “Hotel” (2001), “Ripley’sGame,” The Dancer Upstairs,” “Hideous Man” (2002), “Johnny English” (2003), “TheLibertine” (2004) andThe Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” (2005). Upcomingpictures include “The Great Buck Howard,” “The Mutant Chronicles,” “Gardens of theNight,” and “Beowulf,” the latter directed by Robert Zemeckis.His most notable television appearances have been in “Heart of Darkness” (1994),“RKO 281” (1999), “Les Miserables” (2000) and “Napoleon” (2002).In addition to his acting career, he wrote and directed “Hideous Man” (2002),directed and produced “The Dancer Upstairs” (2002) and produced “Ghost World”20


(2000), “The Loner” (2001), “Kill The Poor” (2003), “Found in the Street” (2004), “TheLibertine” (2004), and he starred in and produced “Art School Confidential” (2006). Healso produced “Some Assembly Required” (2004) for television.ABOUT THE FILMMAKERSSTEFEN FANGMEIER (Director) received a degree in Computer Science fromthe California State University of Dominguez Hills in 1983. He worked as a systemsprogrammer and image processing analyst at Aerospace Corporation and scientificvisualization project manager at the famed National Center for SupercomputingApplication (NCSA) at the University of Illinois.His first foray into the entertainment industry was when he joined DigitalProduction (co-founded by Gary Demos and John Whitney Jr. and most famous for theirpioneering work on “The Last Starfighter”) in the mid 1980s where he worked in adivision that provided computing services for businesses and the scientific community (tohelp during film and commercials down time).When Digital Productions closed in 1987 after the Omnibus hostile takeover in1986, he joined Mental Images, creators of the mental ray rendering engine, where hebecame Director of Production. At that time mental images had a production division thatserved and demonstrated the features of mental ray. During his tenure there he met futureVFX Supervisors John Nelson (who would work at Imageworks and won the Oscar for“Gladiator”) and John Berton (who would also join him at ILM and last worked on “I,Robot”).Fangmeier joined ILM in 1990 where his first major project was “Terminator 2:Judgment Day” as a CG shot supervisor. Other credits include such notable projects as“Hook,” “Casper” and “Jurassic Park.” His first project as VFX Supervisor was“Twister” for which he received an Oscar nomination and won the BAFTA. Otherprojects include “Small Soldiers,” “Saving Private Ryan,” “The Perfect Storm,” “GalaxyQuest,” “The Bourne Identity,” “Signs,” “Dreamcatcher” and “Master and Commander:The Far Side of the World.”His last project at ILM was “Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events.”He won a BAFTA for “Saving Private Ryan,” was nominated for an Oscar and won a21


BAFTA for “The Perfect Storm” and was nominated for an Oscar, BAFTA and VESAward for “Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World.” He has also served asSecond Unit Director on “Galaxy Quest” and “Dreamcatcher.”JOHN DAVIS (Producer) is chairman of Davis Entertainment, a motion pictureand television production company that, over the last ten years, has produced more than50 movies and telefilms.Davis currently is producing the sequel to “Alien vs. Predator,” having producedthe original box-office hit in 2004. Recently, he produced the features “Garfield: A Tailof Two Kitties” (the follow-up to the box-office hit “Garfield,” also produced by Davis)and the thriller “When a Stranger Calls,” which took the number-one slot its openingweekend. Upcoming are the comedies “The Heartbreak Kid,” starring Ben Stiller,directed by the Farrelly Brothers, and “Norbit,” toplining Eddie Murphy.Earlier, Davis produced “Flight of the Phoenix,” an action-adventure starringDennis Quaid; “Fat Albert,” based on Bill Cosby’s phenomenally popular character;“First Daughter,” starring Katie Holmes; the blockbuster sci fi thriller “I, Robot” and theJohn Woo-helmed thriller “Paycheck,” starring Ben Affleck.Davis’ other recent feature releases include “Daddy Day Care,” starring EddieMurphy, “Life or Something Like It” starring Angelina Jolie and the action hit “BehindEnemy Lines” with Owen Wilson and Gene Hackman. The Davis-produced comedy“Dr. Dolittle 2,” starring Eddie Murphy, grossed more than $113 million domestically,and “Heartbreakers” starring Sigourney Weaver, Gene Hackman and Jennifer LoveHewitt, opened as the number one film in the country.For television, Davis produced the made-for-television movies “The JesseVentura Story” and “Little Richard,” as well as the ABC telefilm “Miracle at Midnight”starring Sam Waterston. He also produced the highly rated NBC mini-series “Asteroid,”the network movies “Volcano: Fire on the Mountain,” “One Christmas” and “This Can’tBe Love,” as well as the cable movies “Tears and Laughter,” “The Last Outlaw,”“Silhouette,” “Voyage,” “Irresistible Force,” “Wild Card,” “Dangerous Passion,”“Curiosity Kills” and “Caught in the Act.”22


Among Davis’ other major theatrical features are “Dr. Dolittle” with EddieMurphy, “Out to Sea” starring Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau, the blockbusteradaptation of John Grisham’s “The Firm” with Tom Cruise, the comedies “Grumpy OldMen” and “Grumpier Old Men,” “Courage Under Fire” starring Denzel Washington andMeg Ryan, Grisham’s “The Chamber,” “Daylight” starring Sylvester Stallone,“Waterworld” with Kevin Costner and “Richie Rich.” Other movies he has producedinclude “Predator,” “Predator 2,” “The Thing Called Love,” “Fortress,” “Gunmen,”“Storyville,” “Shattered,” “Little Monsters,” “The Last of the Finest,” “License to Drive,”“Three O’clock High” andThe Hunted.”Davis is a graduate of Bowdoin College, attended Amherst College and receivedan M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.WYCK GODFREY (Producer) is a partner/producer, with Marty Bowen, inTemple Hill Entertainment. He is a producer on The Nativity Story,” for New LineCinema.Godfrey was a producer on “Flight of the Phoenix,” “First Daughter,” “DaddyDay Care” as well as serving as an executive producer on “I, Robot,” “Alien vs.Predator” and “Behind Enemy Lines.”Godfrey began his career as a creative executive at New Line Cinema aftergraduating from Princeton University in 1990 with a degree in English. In 1995, heswitched to Horizon Pictures as senior vice president of production before joining DavisEntertainment two years later, where he served as president for the past four years.PETER BUCHMAN (Screenwriter) recently wrote two screenplays on the life ofChe Guevara for Steven Soderbergh to direct and Benicio del Toro to star. Those movieswill begin production in April, 2007. Buchman also recently adapted The Piano Tuner byDaniel Mason, into a screenplay for Focus. Currently, he is working on a remake of“Capricorn One,” with director David Dobkin.Since he began earning his living as a screenwriter, Buchman has worked withsuch directors as Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, Sydney Pollack, and David O.Russell. He is a credited writer on “Jurassic Park III.”23


CHRISTOPHER PAOLINI (Author) was born on November 17, 1983 inSouthern California. Aside from a few years in Anchorage, Alaska, he spent his entirelife in Paradise Valley, Montana, where he still lives with his parents and younger sister,Angela. They have two pets, Otis, a black and white cat, and Annie, a friskycocker/Australian shepherd mix.Tall, jagged Beartooth Mountains rise on one side of the Paradise Valley.Snowcapped most of the year, they inspired the fantastic scenery in Eragon. A few yearsago, Paolini hiked to the top of one peak and could see the Grand Teton mountain range,100 miles to the south.Paolini was homeschooled by his parents. He often wrote short stories and poemsin an attempt to put his thoughts into words. He made frequent trips to the library andread widely. Some of his favorite books were Bruce Coville's Jeremy Thatcher, DragonHatcher, Frank Herbert's Dune, Raymond E. Feist's Magician, and Philip Pullman's HisDark Materials, as well as books by Anne McCaffrey, Jane Yolen, Brian Jacques, E. R.Eddison, David Eddings, and Ursula Le Guin.Paolini grew up listening to a variety of music, but classical music fired hisimagination and helped him write. He often listened to Mahler, Beethoven, and Wagnerwhile writing Eragon. The final battle of Eragon was written while listening to“Carmina Burana,” by Carl Orff.The story of Eragon began as the daydreams of a teen. Paolini's love for themagic of stories led him to craft a novel that he would enjoy reading. The project beganas a hobby; he never intended to be published. He took a month to plot out the entiretrilogy, then sat on the sofa and began writing in a notebook. When he reached sixtypages, he gained enough confidence to transfer his work to his Macintosh computer,where most of Eragon was written, although he sometimes found that the story flowedbetter when he wrote by hand. All the characters in Eragon are from Paolini'simagination except Angela the herbalist, who is loosely based on his sister.It took him a year to write the first draft of Eragon. He took a second year torevise the book and then gave it to his parents to read. The family decided to self-publishthe book and so a third year was spent with another round of edits, designing a cover,24


typesetting the manuscript, and creating marketing materials. During this time Paolinidrew the map for Eragon, as well as the dragon eye that appears inside the hardcoveredition. Finally, the manuscript was sent to press, and the first books arrived.The Paolini family spent the next year promoting the book themselves.Beginning with presentations at the local library and high school, they then traveledacross the U.S. In all, Paolini gave over 135 presentations at libraries, bookstores, andschools in 2002 and early 2003. He did most of the presentations dressed in a medievalcostume of red shirt, billowy black pants, lace-up boots, and a jaunty black cap.In summer 2002, author Carl Hiaasen, whose stepson had bought and devoured acopy of the self-published book while on vacation in Montana, brought Eragon to theattention of his publisher, Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers, who subsequentlyacquired the rights to publish Eragon and the rest of the Inheritance trilogy. Knopfpublished Eragon in August 2003 and Eldest, Book Two in Inheritance, in August 2005.Eragon, which has been published in 41 countries, has been a #1 bestseller in both itsAlfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers hardcover and paperback editions and hasspent 164 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list.Eldest hit the marketplace in August 2005 as one of the most anticipated books ofthe fall season, and its first week on sale achieved the biggest single-week sale inRandom House Children’s Books history. Currently in its 15 th printing, Eldest, also a #1bestseller, has been on the New York Times Bestseller list for 60 weeks, and has beenpublished in 41 countries. Most recently, Eldest won a 2006 Quill Award. Together,Eragon and Eldest have sold more than 8 million copies worldwide.Paolini is currently writing Book Three in Inheritance, the title of which has notyet been announced. Once the trilogy is completed, Paolini plans to take a long vacation,when he will ponder which of his many story ideas he will write next.GIL NETTER (Executive Producer) has also produced the features “A Walk inthe Clouds,” “High School High,” “BASEketball,” “Dude, Where’s My Car?” “PhoneBooth,” “My Boss’s Daughter,” the Farrelly Brothers comedy “Fever Pitch,” and“Flicka.”25


Netter served as executive producer on the films “The Naked Gun 2 1/2: TheSmell of Fear,” “My Life,” “The Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult,” “First Knight,”“My Best Friend’s Wedding” and “Unconditional Love.”CHRIS SYMES (Executive Producer) was co-producer on “AVP,” “ResidentEvil,” and on the romantic comedy “The Match.” He was a producer on the 20 th CenturyFox Television mystery thriller film “The Sight.”HUGH JOHNSON (Director of Photography), like many great cameramenbefore him, began his career in commercials, working with such directors as Alan ParkerHugh Hudson, Ridley Scott, Tony Scott and Adrian Lyne.Moving into the movie industry, he had an additional photography credit on TonyScott’s “The Hunger” (1983), and then progressed to second unit director for “1492:Conquest of Paradise” (1992), the first of four films with director Ridley Scott. He wasthe director of photography for Scott’s “White Squall” (1996), followed by director ofphotography and second unit director on “G.I. Jane” (1997). For “Kingdom of Heaven”(2005), he was second unit director and director of photography. In between, he workedas director of photography on David Twohy’s “The Chronicles of Riddick” (2004).WOLF KROEGER (Production Designer), before attaining the position ofproduction designer, worked as art director on such films as “U-Turn” (1973), “BreakingPoint” (1976), “In Praise of Older Women” (1978) and “Quintet” (1979).He became a production designer on “Popeye” (1980), followed by “Rambo:First Blood, Part 2” (1982), “Split Image” (1982) and “Streamers” (1983), “Streamers”(1983), “The Bad Boy” (1984), “Ladyhawke” (1985), “Year of the Dragon” (1985) andThe Sicilian” (1987).After designing the sets for Mario Puzo’s TV miniseries “The Fortunate Pilgrim”(1988), he went on to design “Let It Ride” (1989), “Casualties of War” (1989), “We’reNo Angels” (1989), “The Last of the Mohicans” (1992), “Shadow of the Wolf” (1992)andThe Three Musketeers” (1993).26


In the past decade Kroeger designed “The Edge” (1997), “The 13 th Warrior”(1999), “Enemy at the Gates” (2001), “Reign of Fire” (2002), “Equilibrium” (2002),“Beyond Borders” (2003) and “Racing Stripes” (2005).He was also visual consultant on “Highlander III: The Sorcerer” (1994) and“Cousin Bette” (1998).ROGER BARTON (Co-Producer, Film Editor) began his career editingtelevision features such as “Love, Honor and Obey” for CBS, “Not Without MyChildren” for ABC, and “Indictment: The McMartin Trial” for HBO, which won anEmmy for Best Achievement in Editing.He then went on to features, editing “That Darn Cart,” and more recently, “StarWars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith,” “The Amityville Horror,” “Bad Boys 2,” “GhostShip,” “Pearl Harbor,” “Gone in 60 Seconds” and “Get Rich or Die Tryin’.” He was anassociate editor on “Titanic,” which won an Oscar for Best Achievement in Film Editing.KYM BARRETT (Costume Designer) was born in Brisbane and attended theNational Institute of Dramatic Art in Sydney before entering the movie industry in thecostume department.After working as a wardrobe assistant on “Strictly Ballroom” (1992), Barrettmoved to Los Angeles where she became recognized for her individuality. Her big breakcame when she designed the costumes for “William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet”(1996). Barrett’s reputation was further enhanced with “The Matrix” (1999), her workwinning her a Costume Designers Guild Award nomination. She went on to work on“The Matrix Reloaded” (2003) andThe Matrix Revolutions” (2003).Her other credits include “Three Kings” (1999), “Red Planet” (2000), “TitanA.E.” (2000), “From Hell” (2001), “Gothika” (2003) andThe Virgin of Juarez” (2005).More recently, Barrett designed the costumes for “Monster-in-Law” (2005), starring JaneFonda and Jennifer Lopez, and “Rumour Has It” (2006).27


PATRICK DOYLE (Music) has a prolific career as a highly respected composeron a number of films and was awarded Best Score for “A Little Princess” by the LosAngeles Film Critics Association in 1995.Doyle’s most recent film credits include “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire,”“Man to Man,” “Nanny McPhee,” “Secondhand Lions” and “Calendar Girls.” Doyle’sother high profile credits include “Killing Me Softly,” “Gosford Park,” “Bridget Jones’sDiary,” “Blow Dry,” Love’s Labour’s Lost,” “Great Expectations” and Mike Newell’s“Donnie Brasco.”After graduating the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, Doylecomposed music scores for television including Scottish television’s “Charlie Endell” andthe BBC’s “The Butterfly Hoof.”In 1987, Doyle joined Kenneth Branagh’s Renaissance Theatre Company after hewas commissioned to write the music for the televised version of Shakespeare’s “TwelfthNight.”In 1989 he was asked to write the score for Branagh’s film adaptation ofShakespeare’s “Henry V,” which began his career in film scoring. He then wrote themusic for other productions including “Hamlet,” “As You Like It,” “Much Ado AboutNothing,” “King Lear” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”©2006 Twentieth Century Fox. All rights reserved. Property of Fox.Permission is hereby granted to newspapers and periodicals to reproduce thistext in articles publicizing the distribution of the Motion Picture.All other use is strictly prohibited, including sale, duplication, or other transfers of this material.This press kit, in whole or in part, must not be leased, sold, or given away.28

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