Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins director McG has kicked-off a production blog on the official website for the film with this message and a first look at preliminary concept art for post-judgment day Los Angeles:

We’ve officially started principal photography on Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins. Like you guys, I’ve been a long-time fan of the series and I understand your passion for the Terminator movies — and it’s my full intention to deliver a film that lives up to the previous three installments. I’ve spent time with James Cameron, spoken to Arnold Schwarzenegger, gone over the story with Jonah Nolan, and enlisted Stan Winston.

The Visual Effects Society (VES) has published the first ever set of VES guidelines for titles in the visual effects industry. The list has been vetted by VES members and ratified by the VES Board of Directors. Major studios have reviewed the list as well and are encouraged to utilize it.

“Through these collective efforts, a harmonized master list of titles has been created that should be useful as a touchstone for all effects stakeholders,” says VES Executive Director, Eric Roth. “We think it represents a major step forward for our craft in standardizing the use of titles in the credits process for effects artists.”

Questions regarding these guidelines can be addressed by calling the VES at 818-981-7861.

Credits/Titles to be submitted in accordance with VES Guidelines are as follows:

Just when you thought it was safe to get excited, a possible wrench has been thrown into The Hobbit works. According to London’s Sunday Times, Christopher Tolkien, the son of J.R.R., is attempting to stop the movie from being made altogether, calling for “one last crusade” in the long running court battle.

Regrettably, the issue at large is still money. Tolkien asserts that the family is still owed £80 million from New Line Cinema, under the 1978 sale of the rights that promised them 7.5% of the profits. Of course, that studio is now defunct, and Warner Bros has no comment on the financial problems.

Yesterday, Peter Jackson and Guillermo del Toro went online to chat with Tolkien fans about their planned approach for the two upcoming Hobbit films.

On the topic of new VFX and Makeup Crews,

Guillermo del Toro:   Many of them will be back. I will supplement the FX departments, the design departments (with very interesting names), but the crew will utilize as many of the original elements as possible.

I had a marvelous lunch with John [Howe] and Alan [Lee] in London a few days ago and we all got very excited as we discussed my ideas on Smaug, Mirkwood, etc They are most definetly back!

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There’s just something about that familiar Indiana Jones music. You know it–dun ta dun ta, dun ta da…

Even having spent months slaving over some 450 computer-generated images for the just-released Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the admittedly jaded Hayden Landis still gets excited when he hears that theme song.

“The little kid in you comes out,” said Landis, computer graphics supervisor on the film, recalling the music in the opening of the movie trailer. “I grew up with Indiana Jones.”

Director Bekmambetov finds the idea of “fix it in post” a horrific concept—to him, visual effects are intended to take the shot further than captured in-camera, not to wholly create something that didn’t start on the set.

Bekmambetov explains, “For me, it is the emotion that is important, not really the effect. It may be a little old school, but this is how I get what I need from my actors and crew. I don’t use effects to make up for what is not there. If it’s in the character, in his or her emotions, it will be on the screen.”

“Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” chased down $311.1 million from moviegoers around the world, as nostalgic fans brought along their children to watch Harrison Ford’s latest escapades, distributor Paramount Pictures said on Monday.

The tally included $151.1 million from the United States and Canada — the second-highest U.S. Memorial Day holiday weekend opening in history — and $160 million from No. 1 launches in 61 other countries, the studio said.

Foreign highlights included $24 million in Britain and $14 million in France. Sales in France were boosted by the hype surrounding its glitzy world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on the French Riviera last Sunday.

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