The Golden Compass is a 2007 fantasy-adventure film based on Northern Lights (published as The Golden Compass in the U.S.), the first novel in Philip Pullman's trilogy "His Dark Materials". The film was released on December 7, 2007 by New Line Cinema. Directed by Chris Weitz, it stars Dakota Blue Richards, Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig, Eva Green, Sam Elliot, Ian McKellen, Ben Walker and Freddie Highmore. The project was announced in February 2002, following the success of recent adaptations of other fantasy epics, but troubles over the script and the selection of a director caused significant delays. At US$180 million, it was one of New Line's most expensive projects ever, and its middling success in the US contributed to New Line's February 2008 restructuring.