Tintin receives UK premiere in London

Jamie Bell: "I was very flattered to be given the opportunity to play this part"

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The stars of Steven Spielberg's take on Herge's classic comic character, Tintin, have attended its UK premiere in London.

The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn tells of how the intrepid reporter sets off on a treasure hunt for a sunken ship with Captain Haddock.

British actor Jamie Bell portrays the hero in the computer-generated 3D animation.

Bell told the BBC the film was "Spielberg at his best".

He said: "It's fun - what we've done is make an action-packed movie.

"It's a true adventure and it's worthy of any kind of Indiana Jones film."

Spielberg's film uses motion-capture techniques similar to those used in Lord of the Rings, King Kong and Avatar, where actors wear special suits which record all movement.

The data is then transformed into a computer-generated three dimensional image.

Ahead of the premiere, Spielberg said the techniques were "new territory" after 42 years behind the camera.

"I've had digital animation elements in Jurassic Park - the dinosaurs were all animated digitally - but never have I just made a purely animated movie until now," he told BBC Breakfast, in an interview that will be screened on Wednesday, 26 October.

"What I didn't expect was, not only did it take me 28 years to figure out how to make the movie, then finally get a script I was willing to direct - but [it needed] three years of active animation.

"I was able to make two other movies while they were animating Tintin."

'Not very Munich'

The film also stars Daniel Craig as criminal Ivanovich Sakharine, Simon Pegg as Inspector Thompson and Andy Serkis as Captain Haddock.

Pegg told the BBC he did not originally plan to star in the movie: "I went to see Steven Spielberg in LA for a meeting about writing for the film and while we were speaking he said, 'You're an actor, why don't you be in it?' so I said, 'Alright, I'll see what I can do'.

Daniel Craig at the Tintin premiere Daniel Craig said he loved playing criminal Ivanovich Sakharine in the film

"I didn't want to lose composure in front of my hero - I called my mum straight after."

Craig added he loved playing "a baddie" but the filming process was not what he was used to.

"You're in a studio wearing a leotard - it's not very Munich (the 2005 drama Craig made with Spielberg)," he said.

"It was all filmed in one room and you have camera in your face, but they're not filming anything, and it's all fed into a computer in some wizarding way."

First created in 1929 by Brussels-born author Georges Remi, who wrote under the name Herge, Tintin books have sold more than 220 million copies around the world.

The film had its world premiere in Belgium on Saturday, where Spielberg said he hoped his film would find new fans in the US, where the character is not as well known as it is in Europe.

"American audiences will look at this as an original movie," the director - who bought the rights to the character in the 1980s - told reporters.

"Hopefully, if it is successful in America, perhaps for the first time in 80 years the books will start being published in America."

Belgian press were broadly positive about the adaptation, with Belgian French-language magazine Le Vif writing: "Action and humour dominate in a very pleasant spectacle."

Le Soir added: "Herge would have loved this Tintin, full of character."

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