Varietyreports that fans in France will be treated to another installment in what'sproven to be a lucrative comic franchise. Producer Claude Berri is preparing athird Asterix movie that is slated for production next year.
Actor-directorGerard Jugnot (Monsieur Batignole) is set to direct, withChristian Clavier returning in the title role.
The movie isexpected to be less ambitious than its predecessors, 1999's Asterix andObelix Vs. Caesar and this year's Asterix and Obelix: MissionCleopatra, two of the most expensive French movies ever made. Berri toldVariety that budget is much more of an issue on the new project. Cleopatraopened big in France but did not fare as well in the international market.
Both movies haveyet to hit the U.S. market. Miramax holds the domestic distribution rights andplans on releasing Cleopatra in June of next year with Caesarfollowing later in 2003.