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Shrek 2 - Preview



Preview by: Jack Foley

FOLLOWING the announcement that Shrek 2 is to play in competition at Cannes, it seemed only natural for us to check out what delights are in store for audiences rushing to see the sequel.

The follow-up to 1998’s huge hit picks up pretty much where the last film left off, with Shrek (Mike Myers) and Fiona (Cameron Diaz) returning from their honeymoon to find an invitation to dinner from Fiona’s parents (John Cleese and Julie Andrews).

The only problem is that they have no idea that Fiona is now an ogre, and that she is married to another ogre, and, to make matters worse, not everyone is happy with the marriage - with the most irate person being Prince Charming (Rupert Everett), who was supposed to be the one who lifted Fiona's curse.

Along for the star-studded ride are the mysterious Fairy Godmother (Jennifer Saunders), and a bar called the Poison Apple, where the villains of the fairy tale world hang out, including the great ogre-slayer... Puss-in-Boots (Antonio Banderas).
Eddie Murphy, naturally, reprises his role as the talking mule - a performance which earned the star an Oscar nomination for the original.

Advance word on Shrek 2, which opens in the UK on July 2, is said to be so hot, that DreamWorks is already considering a possible third film in the series, with rumours abounding that the storyline could spoof the legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

But for now, directors Kelly Asbury and Conrad Vernon are keen to extol the virtues of the sequel, with the former predicting that it’s ‘bigger, better, and funnier’.

Adds Vernon, in an interview with US-based website, About.com: "As far as the writing of the script is done, we’ve worked a little bit differently on this one, where the writer [Joe Stillman] has been more involved from the beginning.

"It’s not like we had a script and then we go in and see what works and what doesn’t, start changing it. We actually worked from an outline on this one."

What’s more, the directors are promising even more fleshed out characters, thanks to the advances in technology since the original.

Facial expressions, body movements and action sequences are all expected to be far more detailed, and more adventurous, as a result of both the advances and the fact that audiences already know the characters and can move forward with them more quickly.

Of the returning favourites, expect appearances from John Lithgow’s scheming, pint-sized villain, Prince Farquaad, as well as the Gingerbread Man (now fully recovered from his torture).

There aren’t too many films that feel equipped to deal with Spider-Man 2 this Summer, but Shrek 2 looks to be one of them, and don’t bet against a friendly ogre and his mule making an ass of the competition, and turning others green with envy, come the year-end round-up.

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