Forget about last year’s ‘Conan the Barbarian’ movie (yes, there was one and it starred Jason Mamoa), because Universal has the Conan movie of all Conan movies in development and it will feature the man whose name is synonymous with the barbarian himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The project, titled ‘The Legend of Conan,’ will bring Schwarzenegger back to the role that launched his movie career; before the time his famous catch phrase “I’ll be back” was even uttered in ‘The Terminator.’ And unlike other sequels in a franchise, Schwarzenegger will be playing Conan as he would be some 30 years later (about the same amount of time that has passed since the last Conan film) with his character aging just as he has.
“The original ended with Arnold on the throne as a seasoned warrior, and this is the take of the film we will make,” says Fredrik Malmberg, CEO of Paradox Entertainment, the company that holds the rights to Conan. “It’s that Nordic Viking mythic guy who has played the role of king, warrior, soldier and mercenary, and who has bedded more women than anyone, nearing the last cycle of his life. He knows he’ll be going to Valhalla, and wants to go out with a good battle.”
Malmberg will be producing the project alongside Chris Morgan who pitched his dream project to the studio. Morgan is the Universal based writer/producer who has written the screenplays for ‘Wanted’ and the last four ‘Fast and Furious’ films and may write the script for the film. The eta for a script is dependent on whether he can finish writing ‘Fast and Furious 7’ quickly enough to begin writing on this project as Universal is looking to release the film in summer of 2014.
According to Morgan, ‘The Legend of Conan’ will skip over last year’s remake and the sequel, ‘Conan the Destroyer’:
“After the original seminal movie, all that came after looked silly to me. Robert E. Howard’s mythology and some great philosophy from Nietzsche to Atilla the Hun was layered in the original film. People say, he didn’t speak for the first 20 minutes of the film, but that was calculated in depicting this man who takes control of life with his own hand. (‘The Legend of Conan’) picks up Conan where Arnold is now in his life, and we will be able to use the fact that he has aged in this story. I love the property of Conan so much that I wouldn’t touch it unless we came up with something worthy. We think this is a worthy successor to the original film. Think of this as Conan’s ’Unforgiven.’”
Since the film will be a direct sequel to the original ‘Conan the Barbarian’ film that was directed by John Milius and co-written with Oliver Stone, the producers are still deciding on whether ‘The Legend of Conan’ will also take on an R rating like its predecessor:
“All of that horrific stuff happened for a reason, and then an act of kindness sends (Conan) on his journey. Will that level of violence be there? Absolutely, but only if it serves a character who lives by that barbarian law of the wild, who is capable of extreme violence and rage, but who has created his own code and operates from within it. By the end of that film, Conan became a certain character, and this film picks him up there, as he faces different challenges that include dealing with age.”
Schwarzenegger is said to be just as excited about the project and issued a statement saying:
“I always loved the Conan character and I’m honored to be asked to step into the role once again. I can’t wait to work with Universal and the great team of Fredrik Malmberg and Chris Morgan to develop the next step of this truly epic story.”
What do you think? Do you want to see Schwarzenegger return as Conan?
‘Conan the Barbarian’ (1982) Official Trailer: