Emile Hirsch Talks Speed Racer

It's going to be all green screen

Maybe we were left out of a memo somewhere, but until we spoke to Emile Hirsch recently we were under the impression that Speed Racer, the Wachowski brothers' adaptation of the cult cartoon about a boy who wants to be the best racing driver in the world, was going to using green screen elements for its reportedly groundbreaking racing sequences, but using old fashioned sets and props for much of the rest of movie. We'd heard rumours that much of it would be filled in later (John Mathieson, who was Director of Photography on Gladiator, apparently turned down the chance to shoot this because of the glut of green), but no concrete confirmation that it was taking the full 300 approach.

"Nope, it's all green screen," Hirsch told us. "There were no sets, just us and the green background. I haven't seen anything of it finished yet, there was a lot of trust [in the Wachowskis] involved. It's going to be crazy. Was the monkey real? Yes."

So, what does this mean for the look of Speed Racer? Are the brothers going to try to stylize this to look just like the cartoon – though presumably without the characters mouths continuing to move after they've finished speaking?