By Eric Ditzian (@ericditzian), with reporting by Josh Horowitz (@joshuahorowitz)
In one corner of the fairy tale-meets-Hollywood world, there is Kristen Stewart and mighty Universal Pictures. In the other, there is Julia Roberts and upstart Relativity Pictures. Both sides are pushing forward with "Snow White" adaptations. Only one can boast of having, in Stewart, one of the biggest young names in the business.
But the director of the other "Snow White," Tarsem, not only isn't worried, but paid Stewart a high compliment when we caught up with him at San Diego Comic-Con. "She's gorgeous," he told us, adding that he'd only seen her onscreen work in David Fincher's "Panic Room." "She's great."
For his Snow White, Tarsem cast up-and-comer Lily Collins, looping her into a production that has already kicked off and which will hit theaters months ahead of Stewart's in 2012. "For me, when I looked at it, I thought there's only room for one of these," he explained of the two competing films. "And it looks like there's more. Nobody's backed off. I just know that we were ready so much earlier. And thank God for Julia, because when she came in, I got everything my way."
While we have seen photos of Stewart, as well as co-stars Liam Hemsworth and Charlize Theron, in "Snow White and the Huntsman," thus far from Tarsem's film, we've only seen Collins in character. So what type of evil queen will Roberts end up being?
"A mixed-up queen," Tarsem told us. "I don't know how to do for the 'now you shall' kind of person. For me, [it's] the personality of a person who looks into the mirror and does all the evil deeds she needs to do. Like serial killers, you outsource your evil: The devil made me do it or I hear voices. It's kind of one of those people. She does what she does, but she thinks it comes from a place where the person in the mirror tells it to her."