This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2010, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
The mighty 20th Century Fox is going all out for its hoped-for Christmas blockbuster, "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader."
Reps for Fox brought a 30-minute preview for Salt Lake City critics to see Tuesday night. It was impressive, though they may have showed a little too much.
It's World War II in Britain, and two of the Pevensie kids Edmund (Skandar Keynes) and Lucy (Georgie Hensley) have been shipped off to live in Cambridge with relatives, notably their obnoxious cousin Eustace (Will Poulter, from "Son of Rambow"). A seascape painting transports the three of them to Narnia, onto a ship helmed by Prince Caspian (Ben Barnes), and sending them on a mighty quest to collect seven swords and once again defeat the White Witch (Tilda Swinton).
The nine clips shown by Fox reveal stronger special effects than the first two films (which were released by Disney), and a better sense of action, thanks to veteran director Michael Apted ("The World Is Not Enough," "Coal Miner's Daughter"). The most jarring change is the voice of the sword-fighting rodent Reepicheep, with Simon Pegg replacing Eddie Izzard.
Fox faces an uphill marketing battle with "Dawn Treader," which opens Dec. 10 just one week before an even more-hyped blockbuster, Disney's "Tron Legacy" (which will have a public preview on Thursday).