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 12:00 AM, 03-DECEMBER-07
Richards Returns In Moonacre

Dakota Blue Richards made her film debut in the upcoming The Golden Compass movie, then went directly to starring in a second fantasy film, The Secret of Moonacre, which she said that she preferred in some ways.

"I loved the story of that as well," Richards, 13, said during a group interview while promoting The Golden Compass in London. "And, I mean, to be honest, in some ways I preferred working on that more than on this, and in some ways, I prefer this more than that. We were out of the country shooting that, and there was one other child on set at any one time, and she was Hungarian, and she didn't speak any English, and my Hungarian is terrible. It's very hard to be away from your friends for so long."

The Secret of Moonacre is based on the award-winning children's story "The Little White Horse" by Elizabeth Goudge. Directed by Gabor Csupo (The Bridge to Terabithia), the film co-stars Ioan Gruffudd, Tim Curry and Natascha McElhone.

"There are the two families who are against each other, the Merryweathers and the De Noirs," Richards said. "And this is very, very basic and simple: One of the Merryweathers has to team up with one of the De Noirs to kind of set something right."

Richards plays Maria Merryweather, a 13-year-old orphan who learns that she's the only remaining Moon Princess and must embark on a race against time to save her family's estate, called Moonacre Manor. Doing so involves not only righting some old wrongs, but also a bit of magic.

Richards described Maria as quite different from Lyra, her character in The Golden Compass. "Maria is very much a lady," Richards said, "Whereas Lyra is, you know, not, and not wanting to be one." The Secret of Moonacre will be released in 2008. The Golden Compass opens Dec. 7. —Ian Spelling


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©2008, SCI FI. All rights reserved.

Guillermo del Toro's Oscar-winning fantasy film Pan's Labyrinth was selected as the winner of the BBC4 World Cinema Award, Variety reported. It was selected from a shortlist of five by a jury comprised of director Nick Broomfield and actors Archie Punjabi and Christopher Eccleston. BBC4 will broadcast the awards ceremony throughout the U.K. on Feb. 2.

Iron Man star Robert Downey Jr. will be honored as male star of the year at ShoWest 2008. The actor will be recognized at an awards gala at the close of the exhibition in Las Vegas on March 13, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Battlestar Galactica star Edward James Olmos has been honored with an asteroid named after him, according to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The asteroid formerly known as 1993 EO will now officially be called 5608 Olmos in recognition of the actor's work and promotion of humanitarian causes. The name was suggested by Massachusetts astronomer Tom H. Burbine, who achieved a similar recognition for Star Trek veteran George Takei last year.


Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles 11.1
Medium 6.4
Ghost Whisperer 6.1
Moonlight 5.1
Smallville 1.6
Supernatural 1.1

Source: Nielsen Galaxy Report, 1/7/07 - 1/13/08. Fewer than 10 listings appear because fewer than 10 different SF&F; original series aired on broadcast networks this week.