Let me start by saying that Conan the Barbarian is by far one of my favorite movies of all time. In my humble opinion, there are almost no dark fantasy flicks that even remotely compare to the level of excellence that went into that film. The second in the series, Conan the Destroyer was a grave disappointment and the newest one, with Jason Momosa (or whatever that guy’s name is) was so bad that my eyes almost bled watching it. So how should I react when I hear that they’re working on one more Conan movie? With ecstatic joy!
At the end of Conan the Destroyer, there is a scene of Arnie/Conan sitting on his throne, looking rather discontent and the narrator says something to the effect of “…but that is another story.” They’ve talked about making a third film, thus turning it into a trilogy, for many years now. It used to be tentatively referred to as Conan the King and I spent many days of my youth tracking its potential development in media magazines (magazines were where you found your movie news back then, kids). Always there was talk, but never any action.
Now, it looks like they finally may get back to it! The new running title is The Legend of Conan and the powers-that-be want to have it going in summer of 2014. Universal Studios is working in conjunction with Paradox Entertainment (the company that holds the Conan rights) and they want it to include Arnie.
According to early reports, the focus they wish to put on the new film is that of an aged Conan (as old as Arnie is now). He’s lived his life, had crazy adventures and now, as he nears the end of his life, wants to go out in battle. They’ll be exploring all the classic Conan elements, such as fantasy, action, half-naked women, battles and blood, but they also want to go deeper into the character. It will be about Conan getting old and dealing with the changes that has brought to his barbarian career.
If done right, it sounds like it could be the most amazing Conan film ever. Well, probably not as good as the first, but at least way better than Destroyer.
There is just one major problem, however - Chris Morgan is writing the script. This is the guy who wrote the last four Fast and Furious movies, which were, let’s face it, total crap. If he puts the same level of complexity into Conan that he did in those films, the new flick will be worthless whether Arnie happens to be in it or not.
Fortunately, it’s still early in the process. Kicking writers and replacing them is a pretty common practice in today’s Hollywood world, so maybe they’ll pull someone in with a bit of talent for things other than just mindless action. Also, Arnie still has to say yes, though I’m guessing that’s just a matter of how big his paycheck will be.
Until I hear more, I’ll be crossing my fingers and hoping desperately that this isn’t just one more Hollywood rumor that doesn’t quite pan out.