July 10, 2009

Hollywood looks to "Asteroids," View-Master for inspiration

In what's been a relatively quiet week after the July 4th holiday (well, unless you count the whole Chrome OS thing), a head-scratchingly odd trend began to emerge out of Tinseltown.

First, Universal snapped up the rights to "Asteroids," the classic Atari video game from the late 70s/early 80s that, so far as I remember, has neither a plot nor characters. Kinda strange -- that is, until we learned that DreamWorks bought the movie rights to the View-Master, the plastic 3-D picture-disc viewer that's been around for decades. (The creative geniuses behind "Transformers" and the new "Star Trek" movie are set to produce).

Now, "Asteroids" may lack a backstory, but at least it features a little spaceship zipping around the universe blasting rocks. But as for the View-Master ... um, I loved it when I was seven, but who was the one who thought it would make for a killer movie? (Oh, and while I'm at it, turns out that the film rights for "Battleship" and "Candyland" have been acquired, as well.)

Also this week: The New York Times mulls a $5/month online subscription fee (finally); rumors of Microsoft's so-called "Pink" phone project continue to circulate; no price cuts or streaming Netflix for the PlayStation 3 (or at least, not yet); and I got a hands-on look at the T-Mobile myTouch 3G.

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