Leaving The Shire behind for good Peter Jackson is heading for a very different fantasy landscape for his next film. His protege Christian Rivers will be making his feature debut directing an adaptation of Philip Reeve’s Mortal Engine books. Jackson, Philippa Boyens and Fran Walsh will be writing the film and overseeing production.

Jackson and co have been toying with visiting this future world  for some time. Reeves’ dystopian sci-fi has huge cities roaming the scorched world on the look out for ever-dwindling resources. If you’re picturing Howl’s Moving Castle about now you’re not far off. Clad it in some steampunkish armour with some Victoriana and post-nuclear stylings and you’re there.

That Jackson and WETA can build something amazing from this fertile ground is easy to imagine. Rivers has been working with Jackson for many years, directing Second Unit for The Hobbit films and doing similar work on the recent Pete’s Dragon.

Jackson announced that Rivers would be taking on the film in this Facebook post, and also confirms that the long-awaited, Stephen Fry-scripted movie of The Dambusters is still happening.

It has taken seven years to get this behemoth of a film moving, we can’t wait to see what they come up with.