A little hidden secret in movieland is that Zack Snyder has already found his next project after next month's highly anticipated release of "Watchmen."  The new film is  an adaptation of the children's book series "Guardians of Ga'Hoole."   The catch?  Snyder, like Robert Zemeckis and George Miller before him, is venturing into the world of animation.

Based on Kathyrn Lasky's New York Times bestselling series, "Guardians" combines her first three installments to tell the story of a young barn owl and his friends as they escape a band of rogue owls.

Now, according to Variety, Snyder has cast Jim Sturgess ("21") and Geoffrey Rush, Rachel Taylor ("Transformers") and David Wenham ("300") as his feathered heroes.  Why so many Aussie's in the cast?  The novels were not set in any specific country, but the Village Roadshow and Animal Logic production is shooting in Australia and, well, those tax incentives matter.

The picture is being produced by Zareh Nalbandian.  Deborah Synder and Donald De Line are executive producing. 

In an ironic note, almost four years ago, when De Line was president of production at Paramount Pictures, he shuttered Paul Greengrass' incarnation of "Watchmen" which was in pre-production in London at the time. He immediately returned to Los Angeles to find his own services no longer needed by new studio Chief Brad Grey.  De Line decision unintentionally allowed Snyder's own vision of "Watchmen" to come to light and now the popular filmmaker is putting his substantial muscle behind a new De Line film.  Yes, Hollywood works in strange ways.

No word yet on when audiences can expect to see "Guardians" on the big screen or whether longtime Roadshow partner Warner Bros. is distributing.

 

Stay up to date with the latest breaking news in the worlds of movies, TV and music by signing up for HitFix E-mail Alerts.

Don't miss out. Add HitFix to your iGoogle, My Yahoo or My MSN experience by clicking here.

Not part of the HitFix Nation yet? Take 90 seconds and sign up today.