Brett Ratner is officially off Conan. And according to the latest rumour, V For Vendetta’s James McTeigue may replace him.
CHUD has the story that McTeigue is negotiating to take the job, but we thought we’d put him against some other possible helmers – some who’ve been rumoured, and some of our own ideas for the job…
Previous work: V For Vendetta, the upcoming Ninja Assassin
Why he could be great: He’s got some solid action chops, having spent time in his career working with the Wachowski brothers’ as their second unit director.
And he’s used to working with smaller budgets and throwing it all up on the screen, so even if he has less cash to work with, he’ll make it look good.
Why we’re not so sure: We're not sure if a film in which hundreds of revolutionaries dress up in Conan masks to overthrow the king of the barbarians is the right direction for the franchise. Still, B For Barbarian is a catchy title.[Page-Break]
Previous work: Desperado, From Dusk ‘Till Dawn, Sin City, Spy Kids
Why he could be great: Like McTeigue, he knows how to stretch the budget.
Plus, he has a singular visual style and a way with interesting action. Conceivably, he could also shoot the movie in a Sin City CG fashion, allowing for all manner of creatures and battles.
And he’s done his research already – since he’s still busy trying to get the Red Sonja film off the ground.
Why we’re not so sure: We'd love to see a flick where Conan wanders from town to town with a treasure chest full of weird weapons, or even a flick which starts out as a sword and sandals epic, then turns into a vampire gorefest halfway through.
What we don't want to see is Conan team up with a couple of wisecracking kids to take down a cartoon villain played by Sly Stallone. If that's okay with you.[Page-Break]
Previous work: Dog Soldiers, The Descent, Doomsday
Why he could be great: He’s got ‘80s movies running through his bloodpacks. And he knows how to shoot a fun action scene or two.
His previous work has mostly been low budget, and we really want to see what the TF favourite can do when given some more cash.
It’d be brutal, bloody and intense, we’d guess.
Why we’re not so sure: For Doomsday Marshall mashed up Aliens, Mad Max and Escape From New York. But what if he gets his '80s influences confused, and combines Pretty In Pink, The Breakfast Club and Mannequin for Conan?
We'd all love to see a fllm in which Conan overcomes detention to construct a pretty dress for prom, thanks to the help from his imaginary Egyptian goddess friend - the question is, would the studio? It's far too great a risk, in our opinion.[Page-Break]
Mark Neveldine & Brian Taylor
Why they could be great: Have you looked at the Crank films? They. Are. Brilliant. And they’re also non-stop action.
And now their latest, Gamer, has a trailer, and it looks like they’ve pushed the envelope even further on the action, while also working in a little more story.
They could bring real flare to Conan, provided they get the right script.
Why we’re not so sure: A movie in which Conan has his heart torn out and replaced with a dragon's egg, which he has to keep really hot at all times, or it'll hatch, so he keeps having fights with demons and sex with attractive slave-girls in fur? YES PLEASE.[Page-Break]
Previous work: Star Trek, Mission: Impossible III
Why he could be great: Star Trek proved he’s a man who knows how to reboot a franchise even when he’s not previously an aficionado of the character(s).
Trek was a sure, swift, action packed and human film – and that was him working on only his second feature. He seems to get better every time, and you just know he’d work hard to make Conan great.
Why we’re not so sure: But we don't want to see an opening sequence featuring a teenage Conan bombing around on a big horse, listening to Rage Against The Machine, before leaping off in slow motion, and being caught by the barbarian police. Nor do we want a semi-sympathetic villain, thanks.[Page-Break]
Previous work: Die Hard, Predator, The 13th Warrior
Why he could be great: We’ve plucked him from one of the rumour lists, since he was attached to the film for a while.
He’s one of the best action directors out there – and his filmography speaks for itself. And with The 13th Warrior (though it’s not an amazing film), he proved he knows how to handle swordplay.
Why we’re not so sure: Are we ready for a flick which sees Conan trapped in a massive cave with a bunch of Viking terrorists who have taken his wife captive, forcing him to kill them one by one, whilst spouting a bunch of catchphrase-friendly death-insults? Frankly, yes.[Page-Break]
Previous work: The Devil’s Rejects, Halloween
Why he could be great: He’s another rumour – back in February 2008, it was reported that he’d talked to Nu Image/Millennium Films about nabbing the job. So they must’ve seen something in him and he must’ve been interested.
His history with reboots – after all, he tackled a confirmed classic in Halloween with enough gusto to win the chance at a sequel – is not in doubt.
And we like the idea of Conan lopping off bloody limbs every time he swings his sword.
Why we’re not so sure: We're not sure the world is ready for Conan to have a backstory in which he tortures dragon babies and draws cave-paintings of the results, beats trolls to death with a big stick for making fun of his long hair, and slaughters his white trash family because they leave him alone during the winter solstice.
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