Now I'm assuming that I'm allowed to do such a thing (an animation we were shown last year was practically traced from an episode of Futurama, and it got 3rd highest marks), I've decided that the best thing to do is make a sort of "trailer reel" for Conan: making a montage based on the passage at the beginning of The Scarlet Citadel which is thus:
"Know, O Prince, that between the years when the oceans drank Atlantis and the gleaming cities, and the rise of the Sons of Aryas, there was an Age undreamed of, when shining kingdoms lay spread across the world like blue mantles beneath the stars.
Nemedia, Ophir, Brythunia,Hyperborea, Zamora with its dark-haired women and towers of spider-haunted mystery, Zingara with its chivalry, Koth that bordered the pastoral lands of Shem, Stygia with its shadow-guarded tombs, Hyrkania whose riders wore steel and silk and gold. But the proudest kingdom of the world was Aquilonia, reigning supreme in the dreaming west.
Hither came Conan the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the earth under his sandled feet."
So therefore my ridiculously ambition animation will be thus, the directions like so:
(Know, O Prince...an age undreamed of)
Fade from black, the curve of the earth is seen from space. The camera moves through the atmosphere to the ground.
(When shining kingdoms... beneath the stars)
The camera sweeps across the Hyborian continent. The camera moves through clouds to reveal -
Belverus, a city with red tiled roofs and churches, with a great Germanic castle in the centre, is bathed in early morning sunshine. An eagle flies toward the camera, which follows it into the sun's glare, which fades to -
A sunbathed meadowland with orchards and groves, a great road leading to a distant renaissance-Italian city. The autumnal leaves blow in the wind, a great gust obscuring our vision in a hail of golds and browns. The leaves scatter to reveal -
A landscape with hills and rivers, the sky turbulent and pregnant with rain, the sun striking through in shafts. A few flashes of distant lightning bring thunder, a great flash blinding us, snapping us to -
A mighty grey castle stands among glaciers and snowcapped mountains, strange figures moving in the distance. A stroke of lightning strikes a cliff, the rocks and snow engulfing us in darkness, fading out to -
(Zamora, with it's dark-haired women...)
The camera zooms from the black, revealing it to be the hair of a beautiful woman on the ramparts of a city of purple spires and domes. The camera pans along the rampart to a tower -
(... and towers of spider-haunted mystery)
The top of the tower has strange silhouettes among it's gargoyles and ornamentations. One of these moves with the unmistakable gait of a spider. The camera pans down swiftly, the blurred brickwork fading into -
(Zingara with its chivalry...)
A ship's deck, with two buccaneers fencing. There is a magnificent Spanish port in the distance. The camera pans up to the billowing sails, which changes to -
(Koth that bordered on the pastoral lands of Shem...)
A flag. The camera zooms out to reveal that this is the standard of a vast army approaching a pastoral walled city on a dusty road. A soldier kicks up dust into the camera. The dust settles and we cut to -
(Stygia with its shadow-guarded tombs...)
A chariot's wheel revolving. The camera zooms out to reveal the chariot, it's rider, and the two horses. The chariot is running along a paved road to a great city with black pyramids and citadels, with serpent motifs everywhere. The chariot passes some tombs, with a black serpent slithering among the shadows. The snake notices the camera, and lunges at it, where we cut to -
(Hyrkania whose riders... of the world)
A curved sword is thrust into the ground. The camera pans up, following the sword to the arm and face of a Mongol-like warrior. He ties his tigerskin cloak about him, retrieves his sword, and leaps onto his horse. There are thousands of horses and riders moving in a valley behing him, where the scene fades gently to -
(Aquilonia... dreaming west)
The camera zooms slowly to Tarantia, the red sunset illuminating the blue and golden spires. The camera snaps to a shot with a short hill in the forground -
(Hither came Conan...)
A shadow is cast across the hill, a cloak billowing into the frame -
His long hair billows in the wind -
His blue eyes pierce in the camera -
(Sword in hand...)
His hand grips his standard-issue Aquilonian broadsword -
In a dark room, we see Conan's silhouette pluck out the ruby eye of the statue of a serpent -
Conan raises his sword and roars a battlecry as his mercenary soldiers charge off camera -
Quick shots of Conan cutting some Picts to pieces -
(with gigantic melancholies...)
Conan looking soulfully to a burning ship -
(and gigantic mirth...)
Conan in a tavern, a wench on each arm, a flagon of ale in each hand, laughing heartilly -
(to tread the jewelled thrones of the earth beneath his sandalled feet...)
Final portrait shot of Conan a la Frazetta.
A final flurry of images (to be decided) takes us to a black screen, where "Robert E. Howard's Conan" erupts from flames. Then credits, acknowledgements etc.
So that's the jist of it. I do need some help, mostly:
- Where's a good place to find pictures of ancient cities?
- What do you imagine Nemedia, Ophir, Brythunia, Hyperborea and all the places mentioned above to be like in terms of geography and architecture?
- What nationality will I make Conan's lady friends in the "gigantic mirth" shot?
- What kind of shots should I include in the final montage?
- Do any animations like this actually exist?
If you have any comments or recommendations don't hesitate.