Empire has released the first images from The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, the forthcoming Steven Spielberg film based on the beloved comic books by Hergé. The movie is the first in a planned series of two, with the second to be directed by Peter Jackson. The filmmakers are bringing Hergé's Tintin characters to life with an evolution of the performance capture technology most famously used with the Gollum character in Jackson's The Lord of the Rings, whereby the characters will be played by actors but digitally manipulated to look like their illustrated versions.
"With live action you're going to have actors pretending to be Captain Haddock and Tintin," says Peter Jackson. "You'd be casting people to look like them. It's not really going to feel like the Tintin Hergé drew. It's going to be somewhat different. With CGI we can bring Hergé's world to life, keep the stylised caricatured faces, keep everything looking like Hergé's artwork, but make it photo-real."

The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn also stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as the Thompson twins, Andy Serkis as Captain Haddock and Daniel Craig as Red Rackham, and is scheduled for a 2011 release. Empire promises looks at all the main characters in its new issue, which goes on sale November 4. More images after the jump.