It’s official: The Hollywood Reporter reports that Guillermo del Toro will direct The Hobbit, the long-awaited prequel to Peter Jackson’s epic Lord of the Rings trilogy. Jackson will stay on as producer. Del Toro’s genre credits are impressive: Blade II, Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy and its forthcoming sequel and an expected adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft’s chilling short story At the Mountains of Madness.
A Los Angeles Times interview reveals that the fourth season of Doctor Who will probably premiere here in April on The Sci Fi Channel, and with it The Sarah Jane Adventures. David Tennant returns as the Time Lord known as the Doctor, and for the premiere (always a Christmas episode) he is joined by British pop star Kylie Minogue. Comedian Catherine Tate then begins travelling full time in the TARDIS, a time ship in the shape of a police box that is bigger on the inside than on the outside. Sarah Jane, a spinoff starring former traveling companion Elizabeth Sladen as investigative journalist Sarah Jane Smith, is a more kid-friendly take on the Whoniverse than previous spinoff Torchwood, which airs on BBC America. Pictured above: David Tennant and Elizabeth Sladen in Doctor Who.
Speaking of Sci Fi, the network announced it has picked up Sanctuary, a scripted (!) high-def Web series starring and co-created by Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis star Amanda Tapping. Filming is set for March.
Also speaking of Sci Fi, that network and The History Channel both debuted dueling ‘UFO Hunters’ shows – on the same day and in the time slot. Spooky!