An Appeal To Paradox
Posted 05 November 2009 - 09:04 PM
There is an old Jewish saying: "If three people tell you you're drunk, lie down." The meaning, of course, is that there is wisdom in crowds. You cannot have missed the online eruptions that have taken place in the past two weeks with the leaking of the casting considerations for the Conan movie, nor the plot synopsis that just hit the boards.
I do not write this post lightly, nor do I write it tongue in cheek. I am sincerely, urgently asking you to scrap your current plans for the Conan movie and please start over. I know there is considerable economic pressure to pay back investors and companies, and the conventional wisdom in Hollywood is to play it safe. I can understand that, but if you produce a Conan movie such as we've seen snippets of online, you will destroy any credibility that the last ten years of publishing and scholarship have so carefully and precariously built up.
It's probably inevitable that some changes would occur from printed page to silver screen, but what we're all currently looking at bears absolutely no resemblance to Conan as he's been defined in fiction, and to be honest, this strays pretty far afield from even the first Conan movie, too.
My recommendations (and I make them in the hopes that you want a viable franchise that you can build on over time):
1. Stop the current production.
2. Get an REH expert in the same room with the scriptwriters. Have them read the books and instruct them that the Conan stories will serve as the building blocks for the movie, and nothing else.
3. Use this film as a chance to reinvent the pop cultural idea of Conan.
Look at Casino Royale. Batman Begins. Pirates of the Carribean. All of these films took dead characters, dead franchises, and dead genres and reinvigorated them by not playing it safe. Even fans of Conan the Barbarian don't want a rehash of that. We are twenty years older now, and we need something more sophisticated. Bryan Singer learned that the hard way with Superman Returns. This can NOT be a nostalgia project.
We are counting on you. All of us fans have supported your efforts in the past. We have beat the drum and we have consumed and we have become advocates and evangelists for this company because we believed you when you told us you were going to take care of these properties. All I'm asking for now is that you listen to us and trust our opinions on this matter.
Blood and Thunder: The Life and Art of Robert E. Howard
Second Edition now available from the Robert E. Howard Foundation Press
Finn's Home Away From Home, REDUX!
Posted 05 November 2009 - 09:21 PM
I'd like to add the concern, that a movie with such a flat and lackluster written story has no chance in todays cinema environment, when the biggest blockbusters like The Dark Knight have layers of ethics and a carefully crafted backstory driving their success.
The cinema audience has grown up and is ready for the REAL Howard.
Edited by Waldgeist, 05 November 2009 - 09:35 PM.
Posted 05 November 2009 - 09:28 PM
Better to have no Conan movie that to have that movie polluting the reputations of Conan and Robert E. Howard.
Posted 05 November 2009 - 10:07 PM
Money and muscle, that's what I want; to be able to do any damned thing I want and get away with it. Money won't do that altogether, because if a man is a weakling, all the money in the world won't enable him to soak an enemy himself; on the other hand, unless he has money he may not be able to get away with it.
--Robert E. Howard to Harold Preece, ca. June 1928--
Posted 05 November 2009 - 10:14 PM
Posted 05 November 2009 - 10:25 PM
The Robert E Howard Comics Group is dedicated to the characters created by Robert E Howard that have appeared in comic book form from Marvel Comics , Dark Horse Comics , BOOM Studios, Cross Plains Comics , Dynamite Entertainment etc.
Posted 05 November 2009 - 10:28 PM
Mark, I think you'd better mail your petition to an executive of Nu/Lionsgate, like the infamous Avi Lerner.
Posted 05 November 2009 - 10:33 PM
Signed, Steve Allsup
Posted 05 November 2009 - 10:35 PM
Posted 05 November 2009 - 11:19 PM
Posted 05 November 2009 - 11:25 PM
Posted 05 November 2009 - 11:27 PM
"Here's to brother Painbrush, we drink to his Shade..."
"All Art Is Martial"- RZA
"Our basic purist premise:
ROBERT E. HOWARD, ENTIRELY ALONE, WITHOUT ASSISTANCE FROM ANY OTHER PERSON, CREATED THE CHARACTER CONAN OF CIMMERIA. NO OTHER PERSON OR PERSONS SHOULD BE INTRUDING THEIR WORK INTO THE VOLUMES OF HOWARD'S CONAN STORIES.
In essence, we believe that the work of any creative artist -- writer, painter, illustrator, musician, what-have-you -- is a unique expression of an artistic point of view. It should not be appropriated or altered by others without the artist's consent. No other writer has Robert E. Howard's unique point of view, and no other writer knows what Howard would have done with his character had he lived. Upon his death, his canon, the expression of his artistic vision, became fixed. Tampering with it now is desecration."
Posted 05 November 2009 - 11:43 PM
Signed: Curry Roberts
Edited by Amra, 06 November 2009 - 03:01 AM.
REH-A Witch Shall Be Born - Amra The Lion.com
Posted 06 November 2009 - 12:04 AM
Edited by Crom's Justiciar, 06 November 2009 - 01:43 AM.