Friday, October 26, 2012

Conan Returns...And So Does Arnold?

In yet another example of the insta-reboot culture that's permeating Hollywood, we're staring in the face of yet another try at bringing Robert E. Howard's literary Conan the Barbarian character to the big screen -- and just one year after Lionsgate's 2011 remake starring Jason Momoa as the legendary rogue famously fizzled. This time around, Universal, which released the two cinematic Conan spectacles of the 1980s, has picked up the reins and apparently roped in original star Arnold Schwarzenegger to again tell us about "da lamentations of da wimmen."

The project, called The Legend of Conan, would be a sequel to the John Milius-directed 1982 original, which would ignore not only the Momoa version but also the watered-down Schwarzenegger sequel Conan the Destroyer from 1984 (and let's not even mention Red Sonja spin-off, which starred Big Arnie, but not as
Conan). Now, lest we forget, Schwarzenegger also signed on to reprise his famous Terminator character for another one of those sequels a few years back, and after several years of stasis, that one seems assured of never happening, so there's a whole lot of runway between now and buying your popcorn.

That said, I wonder if anyone even wants this. The project, being described as Unforgiven filtered through a fantasy prism, has potential, and Howard certainly got a lot of mileage out of the adventures of an aged Conan (as did Marvel Comics), but when you look at the many tries at bringing Conan back since his (arguable) '80s heyday -- like this one, ferinstance -- it sure does feel like the zeitgeist has moved on from the character, if not necessarily the genre. While it's being overseen by Fast & Furious writer/producer Chris Morgan, but doesn't have any talent attached other than the once-Governator.

About ten years ago, a similar project called King Conan: Crown of Iron was headed for the big screen at Warners, with Schwarzenegger attached and script and direction by Milius, but momentum on that stalled once Arnie went into politics (and as a Cali resident, let me assure you how colossally dunderheaded that decision ended up being, both for the film and for the state). The Legend of Conan doesn't have any connection beyond the superficial (and no involvement from Milius -- at least so far), so the studio has its work cut out if they plan to meet the summer '14 release. In the meantime, maybe the filmmakers can listen to this to help ease their path through any creative roadblocks.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Next:Death Wish 6, starring
the digital version of
Charles Bronson!

Anonymous said...

Next:Death Wish 6, starring
the digital version of
Charles Bronson!

Anonymous said...


Next:Death Wish 6, starring
the digital version of
Charles Bronson!