'Tintin' will be unleashed in 2011

Paramount, Sony set domestic, overseas release dates

Paramount and Sony have scheduled Steven Spielberg's "The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn" for a Dec. 23, 2011, domestic release through Paramount.

An international rollout will begin weeks earlier in late October, with Sony Pictures Releasing International handling continental Europe, Latin America and India, and Paramount distributing the film in Asia, Australia, the U.K. and all other English-speaking territories.

The holiday tentpole is a 3-D motion-capture feature inspired by the globally famous character created by Herge in two dozen stories first published 80 years ago. Spielberg, Peter Jackson and Kathleen Kennedy are producing what is intended to be the first in a series of films derived from the Herge books.

Jamie Bell stars as the globetrotting young reporter Tintin, who faces off against the nefarious Red Rackham, played by Daniel Craig. Andy Serkis, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Gad Elmaleh, Toby Jones and Mackenzie Crook co-star.

Steven Moffat, Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish wrote the screenplay. Doug Miro and Carlo Bernard also wrote on the project.

Jackson's Weta Digital has developed the performance-capture technology that Jackson himself will use when he directs the second film in the franchise. Spielberg started testing footage for the project last year and began filming officially in January.

Originally, Universal was going to co-finance the film, but it eventually declined at a budget it thought too steep. Paramount ultimately brought in Sony to partner.

Executive producers include Nick Rodwell, Stephane Sperry and Ken Kamins.

On the heels of DreamWorks Animation's recent scheduling announcements, the "Tintin" news further maps out Paramount's 2011 slate, which will include the animated adventure "Rango" (March 18); "Thor" (Marvel, May 20); "Kung Fu Panda: The Kaboom of Doom" (DWA, June 3); "The First Avenger: Captain America" (Marvel, July 22); and "The Guardians" (DWA, Nov. 4).