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Last Updated: Tuesday August 09 2005 12:33 GMT

Dark Materials gets new director

Anand Tucker
A new director has been chosen to take the helm of the first film of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy.

Briton Anand Tucker was given the job following the resignation of Chris Weitz in 2004 because of the trilogy's huge "technical challenges".

Film-makers spoke to loads of people who wanted the job, and author Pullman said he was pleased Tucker won it.

"I warmly welcome Anand Tucker as director of the first His Dark Materials film," said Pullman.

The first book to make onto the big screen will be Northern Lights, which has the name The Golden Compass in the US.

Former director Weitz will continue to be involved with writing the script for the production.

Magical story

Philip Pullman
His Dark Materials tells the magical story of Lyra, a young girl who goes on a long journey to save her best friend.

Some church spokespeople have said it's against religion as it also deals with a war against God.

But Dr Rowan Williams, head of the Anglican Church, said the books could help kids understand what faith really is and called for them to be included in RE lessons.

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