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Conan The Barbarian. Again.

by admin August 13, 2008 3:49 pm
Conan The Barbarian. Again. Wasn't Lionsgate supposed to be revamping their image to be more Universal Pictures and less Dimension Films? Isn't that why they risked a visit from the Cenobites by mutilating the release of Clive Barker's Midnight Meat Train? If so, then Lionsgate has a warped idea of what constitutes classy movies. They are currently in the process of dropping $100 million on a remake of Ah-nuld's gory 1982 showdown with a Darth Vader voice, Conan the Barbarian. The John Milius and Sandahl Bergman epic, written by Ollie Stone, was originally rewritten by the folks who did Sahara. That script was tossed, presumably because nobody would believe Matthew McConaughey was barbaric. At least not the way Conan is.

Lest we think this is a momentary, drunken lapse of judgment on the part of a studio undergoing a My Fair Lady-style transformation, the folks at Lionsgate hope to make more than one Conan. "[T]he studio hopes to redraw the Conan feature universe to produce a new, post-millennial franchise," reports the Hollywood Reporter. "So rather than remake the Schwarzenegger bloodfest, the writers have gone back to Howard's original stories to create a $100 million R-rated origin film..." In other words, expect Conan the Beginning to be followed by numerous sequels like Conan's Next Movie, Conan the Barbarian's Bogus Journey, and Conan the O'Brien. I hear Grace Jones is still available to play the role she did in Ah-nuld's PG-rated sequel, Conan the Destroyer. Alas, poor Wilt Chamberlain is shooting hoops with Saint Peter and beating his ass every round.

Say what you want about Mr. Schwarzenegger, at least the man was fun to watch. Who in today's casting universe could play Conan besides some juiced up WWE or UFC celebrity with the requisite muscles but complete lack of B-movie soul? I suggest they put some CGI muscles on Andy Serkis and let him play Conan in front of a green screen. One man's trash is another man's prestige picture. If this is what passes for critic-pleasing reform at Lionsgate, I can't wait to see what they're doing with Saw 5.

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