Medieval time-travelling pic stars Walker, Butler

Industrial Light & Magic has been chosen to create the f/x for Paramount’s medieval actioner “Timeline.”

Based on the Michael Crichton novel of the same name, “Timeline” revolves around a group of graduate students who travel back to 14th-century France on a mission to rescue their trapped history professor.

Richard Donner takes the helm on the pic, which stars Paul Walker (“The Fast and the Furious”) and Gerald Butler (“Dracula 2000″), with lensing starting in April in Canada.

APG is producing and trying to ready the pic for a 2003 summer release.

Roger Guyett, who created major sequences for Warner Bros.’ “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” serves as the visual f/x supervisor on “Timeline.”

Pic is considered small for ILM, requiring few major computer-generated sequences other than set extensions of castles and the creation of locations to resemble 14th-century France. Entire project’s shot count is still being determined.

However, much of the pic’s f/x, including sword fights and other medieval combat, are expected to be created on set, with Neil Corbould tapped to oversee that work. His recent credits include the physical f/x for “Black Hawk Down,” “Gladiator” and “Saving Private Ryan.”

“Timeline” becomes yet another high-profile pic to land at an f/x facility in recent weeks.

Last week, Sony Pictures Imageworks said it will return to create the f/x for Columbia Pictures’ “Charlie’s Angels 2: Halo” and some sequences for “Men in Black 2,” while Rhythm & Hues has been tapped to create computer-generated visuals for Fox’s “Daredevil.”

ILM also recently said it will serve as the lead f/x facility on “Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines,” which Warner Bros. will distrib next year and C-2 Pictures and Intermedia are producing and financing.

Other pics in the works at ILM are Fox’s “Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones” and “Minority Report,” Col’s “Men in Black 2,” U’s “The Hulk” and Warners’ “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.”

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