‘Conan the Barbarian’ Screenwriter Promises ‘Unflinching’ Reboot

Published 4 years ago by

Conan the Barbarian screenwriter promises R Rated reboot Conan the Barbarian Screenwriter Promises Unflinching Reboot

Robert E. Howard’s Cimmerian warrior, Conan the Barbarian was originally given the big screen treatment back in the 1980s, with Arnold Schwarzenegger playing the titular role. While the Schwarzenegger films are generally considered good campy fun (the first Conan is, at least), even their fans don’t deny they aren’t exactly loyal translations of Howard’s source material.

Yesterday marked the arrival of an official Conan the Barbarian trailer, which offered an early look at this summer’s reboot. If nothing else, the footage on display suggested the new film will adhere closer to the look and atmosphere of Conan literature, especially that of the character’s comic book incarnation.

Conan the Barbarian was scripted by Dylan Dog: Dead of Night writing duo Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer, in collaboration with Sean Hood (Halloween: Resurrection). The combination of those screenwriters with director Marcus Nispel (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Friday the 13th) calling the shots on the Conan reboot seems to suggest that the film will likely return the character to his R-Rated roots.

Hood has spoken out on the new Conan the Barbarian, and confirmed as much:

The world of Hyboria, as Robert E. Howard described it, is fleshy and brutal. Bloody beheadings and bare-chested slave girls abound.  However, while the movie is unflinching in its depiction of barbarism, slavery and warfare, the violence and nudity emerge from the fabric of the story. It isn’t gratuitous.

Robert E. Howard’s stories, although violent and perverse for their time, were not intrusively graphic either. So this is ultimately a movie about the character Conan, a character that will hopefully launch a healthy franchise of movies with stories and characters that celebrate Howard’s work. Yes, you’ll see blood and boobs, but this isn’t a Cinemax movie; it’s epic action/fantasy. And yes, it’s rated R.

conan jason momoa Conan the Barbarian Screenwriter Promises Unflinching Reboot

The material on display in the full-length Conan trailer was given a positive reception by many a fan, but the overall impression so far seems a bit on the mixed side. Although this reboot is clearly not taking a tongue-in-cheek approach to the titular character and the world he inhabits, what footage has been shown from the film seems (to me) a bit too reminiscent of other (fun, but goofy) period fantasy-adventure flicks (the Clash of the Titans remake in particular). And yes, although most of the action looks appropriately unpolished, those couple of Matrix-style moves that Momoa’s Barbarian pulls in the trailer seem out of place.

Right now, I’m mostly on the fence about the new Conan the Barbarian movie. While the visual design and atmosphere of the ancient world setting in the film looks pretty good, there seems to be a risk that the pic will descend into unintentional silliness. I’m still intrigued enough by what’s been shown (and what Hood has said) to give this one a look, but going in with moderate expectations seems the proper approach right now.

Conan the Barbarian arrives in theaters this summer on August 19th. After watching the trailer and reading what Hood has to say, how are you feeling about the film?

Source: Sean Hood
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  1. I would love to see the original stories done justice and this guy looks the part and doesn’t sound like a confused Austrian tourist.

  2. The production looks great and on par with the REH stories.

    My biggest concern is that they will be going a little over the top for the 3D scenes.

    I can get past that if the story is well done and they adhere (as they claim) to the original stories.

  3. Watched the trailer, the movie looks horrible and they don’t even show Conan. All they show are the villains and second rate thugs like the guy in the pics above.
    The movie looks like a Sci Fi channel movie and when you mentioned the people involved it went from bad to worse to forgetaboutit.

    • Er… you do know that’s Jason Momoa as Conan in the two pictures above, right?

      • lol.

    • The guy in the pic above IS Conan.

  4. To all naysayers, to me it’s mixture between 10, 000 BC, Clash of the Titans – meets 300.
    To me this is not Hyborea, the settings and armour are closer to Roman Legions and ancient bronze world, not stone age world
    the city town are same as Clash of the titans and 300.
    Now all you are chearring up,for this goffy crap re-make.
    Is it worthy to make epectations from what we all are seen in the trailer.
    To Me Conan the Barbarians Milius vesion was closer to Hyborea then this crap.It was neart simple and constractive, tha resembeleance the stone age world.
    At lease you can see diferent settings and cities, Mountain of Power and the subterenin world of Thulsa Doom, not to exegerated, after Atlantis san all was lost technology and power, only small band of savages roamed the Hyboreann world and the Kingdom of Aquilonia was rasing to power not to extreme with cities of marble and Parthenon Roman towns.
    Where did they invisioned sailing ships in the time of Hyperborea, when athe time atlantis sank all the technology and architecure was lost under the waves.They could introduce oarring ship like Ancient Egpt alas 10, 000 BC but much smaller, not Golden Compass and pirates of the Carribean sailing vessels.
    In the time of Hyborea only left was here and there some cities and small towns.
    second the population was much more reduced in those areas, comperatable to the movie look slike is dens populated, this is no so.it’s not Howards world, you al have to admit.
    However the screen writters didn’t stay closer to the books of Howard either waht a loss.
    Milius version is the closst epic to the hyborean age, becuse resembles Summerian and Ancient Egyption world.
    that is the closest time period of architecture yopu can get in Hyborea.
    Just to all of you i’ll strech you brianis a bit firther, the Atlabtian refugees wen to Egypt the Balkans and Summeria
    You people need to understand that the hyborean age was the Paleolothic stone age, simple as that and tribes here and there scattere around the knbown world not Roman Legions and huge empires with castles and fotresses.
    This is fantasy in vain to Lord of the Rings from what i saw huge castles valleys, nice and neat cityies, like we are in medivil times not in 10,000 BC pre-history.
    Roland Emmerichs movie 10,000 BC is closer in time settings to that Hyborean world not this crap.
    This movie is way out of time even been fantasy its boldly exegerated.and will flop, only the young generation will appreciate not the educted once, even been a movie but need to be done rigt in order to be belivable.
    This new imitation of Conan will flop like 10,000 BC, Clash of the Titans did.

    • @pelasgian

      Dude did you even read the books?? I am doubting that based on the “facts” you are quoting. You do realze that Milius didnt even use the books as a template for the Movie he made with Arnold,he simply pulled various people and settings out he thought sounded good. Hell he even took parts of Soloman Kane and some of Howards Horror stories and wrote them in. None of what was in his movie ever took place in the books.

      In fact Howard explained that the time of Conan was 10,000 years before even the first recorded known civilizations of today. The lands and countries were vast and old long before Conan was born. Hyborea could amass an army of over 500,000 men if called upon so you stating that most of the civilizations were nothing but stone age is wrong. Magic was being used as well as finely crafted armor and weapons and a stone age society doesnt have the ability to do that.

      Here go to http://gutenberg.net.au/plusfifty-a-m.html#letterH and read up a bit.

    • Ok…

      Between your very bad grammar and your constant misspelling, it was hard for me to understand very much of what you were saying.

      But, I was able to determine that you have no idea of what you are talking about.

      There are no real earth ancient civilizations in Hyboria. They are similar to the ones from history, but there are no Romans, Egyptians or any other real earth cultures in any of REH’s stories.

      While I appreciate that you have an opinion, please make it a coherent one next time and do some fact checking as well.


      • Bad grammar? You sir missed at LEAST two commas and created what is called “a run on sentence” try saying “I can get past that if” out loud with no pause. Yea. It sounds like a 6 year olds argument. If you’re gonna counter an argument with BS, at least try and be somewhat right. Cheers!

        • Based on your handle and your comments, you just popped by to troll the site.

          Trolls don’t last long here.

          • Troll the site? Calling you out doesn’t make me a “troll”. I’d say people who A. Counter a (correct) argument with whining about grammar. And B. Don’t have a legit response when they’re confronted with they’re own grammatical errors, are “trolls”.
            Go post on ubersite.

            • You’re name alone is inflammatory as well as your comments.

              This is a site to discuss and debate movie topics in a meaningful manner.

              Not only did pelasgian (which I am assuming is you) not make a single valid comment, they did so incoherently.

              I welcome all debate on the topics of movies here and, as many people on this site know, I am fairly level headed (for the most part). You seem to be new to the site or merely some person hiding behind a name meant to stir controversy and incite strife. I don’t know. Either way, I don’t care.

              But, what I can tell you is, I have been posting and discussing her long enough to know that folks like you (who seem to want argue or harass for the sake of arguing or harassing) are not welcome nor are they tolerated. Neither by the community nor the site hosts.

              I imagine if you continue, you will be hearing from Vic in the very near future.

              Or as others have stated in the past…

              Obvious troll is obvious.

    • Um…. huh? So you’re excited for it?

    • Your take on the movie and the books is a little off.
      First of all it’s a fantasy world, not a historical documentary.
      Second, I think you may have mistaken the concept and the era. As the name suggests “Stone age” was exactly that Stone age. No iron or steel weapons were used. Weapons and tools were made out of stone and wood. On the other hand, the world of Conan uses metal for tools, weapons and armour. (By the way ancient Egypt used bronze weapons and tools).
      Third, Clash of the Titans – Budget: 125mil, Box office take: about 493mil. Not exactly a flop.
      Lastly your grammar is horrendous, I had real hard time understanding your comments half the time.

  5. No I think the guy above is the main villan’s henchman, it’s not Conan that would be ridiculous… that’s gotta be the main villan’s right handman, no doubt… Nispel’s a messy hack but he’s not crazy, I think they’re keeping Conan’s identity and look a secret, by the look and feel of the film I wouldn’t be surprised that Conan is being played by Kevin Sorbo.

    • troll alert…

    • Wow! Just Wow! You really don’t know anyting about this flick do you? *SIGH* Folks…he’s kidding…got to be!

  6. I was worried there would be relentless flinching. This gives me some comfort.

  7. Aleric:
    Dude did you even read the books?? I doubt that based on the “facts” you are quoting. You do realize that Milius didn’t even use the books as a template for the Movie he made with Arnold, he simply pulled various people and settings out he thought sounded good. Hell he even took parts of Solomon Kane and some of Howard’s Horror stories and wrote them in. None of what was in his movie ever took place in the books.

    Have you seen the doco of Conan Unchained? I suggest you to resume what you’ve wrote?

    In fact Howard explained that the time of Conan was 10,000 years before even the first recorded known civilizations of today. The lands and countries were vast and old long before Conan was born.

    Ok from your view of prospective what world was 10,000 BC?
    Wasn’t Stone Age with little scattered small civilization that were left her and there over after the sinking of Atlantis.
    Tell me what does Hyborea mean?
    Aren’t they the northern migration that took part northern Europe after the ice Age started to recede?
    Where do you think the refugees from Atlantis went?
    If there was an Atlantis. Some of you do feel its myth some of you say its’ part of our own lost history, that was not recorded.
    How long did it take after the destruction of Atlantis and the raise of the Aryans?
    Think first before you contradict me.

    Between your very bad grammar and your constant misspelling, it was hard for me to understand very much of what you were saying.

    But, I was able to determine that you have no idea of what you are talking about.

    My grammar I wasn’t using spell check like most of you hi society do I apologies.
    My view is the prolonged miss shaping of quasihistorians, front what they are trying to teach the mass.
    R E Howard I appreciate his work and I do believe in some of the Hyboran civilization I might did happen in our long past are forgotten and remembered as legends and myths.
    I do believe that Paleolithic world emerged after the destruction of those Advance civilizations, Atlantis, Rama, Mu, Lemuria, and OG.
    That is was there is no single trace of records on earth most are submerged from upheavals of Volcanoes and tsunamis.
    Howard tried to find a gap so can fill in his view and invent the Hyborean age that’s for sure, that happened between the World cataclysm and the starting of Civilizations in Egypt Summer, Mesopotamia, India and China.


    There are no real earth ancient civilizations in Hyboria. They are similar to the ones from history, but there are no Romans, Egyptians or any other real earth cultures in any of REH’s stories.

    You are just jumping to the conclusion aren’t you! With out paying attention to my direction that I’m trying to emphasis?

    I suggest you watch the trailer and see it, for your self!
    The movie is going to flop not matter how much your expectation you’re rising, its crap, crap, crap.
    Jason Mamoa doesn’t fit the part the body is way to small for Conan, no muscular definition what so ever, to small for Conan.
    The real Conan was Giant Gibborin in stature an Atlantian, for your will.
    The Cimmerians where the refugees from Atlantis in Howard’s books. They where Giants Formmorians warriors, that the Celtic lore spread from them.
    Read Howard’s Heresies!
    The looks you might get away a bit. The cloths is crap not believable Arnies look is proper portrayed then this buffoon.

    For all of you criticizing me about my grammar. Well at least I’m an expert in History and Linguistics then all of you here.

    You can all bring me water and asking me when enough is……
    Most of my finding are rejected because the controllers don’t want to bomb there false acquisitions, in order not to re-write history.
    Because I day it again: His-Story is someone views a vision not real event.
    That is way the story is written from the winners, because it’s all altered down, the secrets are destroyed and hidden.
    Only Myth you can believe that is been past through orally records and not written down from generations of eons ago.
    like Plato he wrote about Atlantis through his third generation Solon, how do we know if the event was exactly like he says, don’t you think nothing has been lost from those statements when the Egyptian priest told solon at the temple of Sais.
    That account is considered a myth right, well behind this myth his hidden the real history behind it not precisely but closer, and something altered and rewritten by Plato our grand father.
    the same thing applies here Howard knew something that it did exist in Ancient Paleolithic Europe but was not clear if the event was real or not, but most of those ancient lands it did exist or could he really invented everything, he was no academic in history and palolingistics wasn’t he.

    • Dude I read your comment and it is difficult to follow in certain parts…I am not saying this to be mean but is english your first language? You may be making some valid points but you need to be clear and concise..and remember to try and not get offended by some people even on Screenrant..there are regulars(trolls) here too who like to say they are hiding behind a good arguement but are just fanning the fires..

      • Dear Pot,

        Stop being black.

        Thanks, Kettle


    • While I hate to agree with Green, is English not your first language?

      I want to throw something out there that may clear this all up.

      Hyboria is not a fictional Earth continent. It’s a completely fictional continent on a fictional world. REH merely borrowed from our own ancient cultures.

      I think it’s in the section called “The Hyborian Age” of “The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian” where they talk about how Hyboria was created. There’s also a map where REH overlaid Hyboria over the European and Asian continents to derive his cultures.

      But, it does state (will need to find citation) that Hyboria is not on Earth.

      Now, if you think the movie is going to suck because you don’t like the trailers, that’s fine. I can’t argue your personal preferences.

      I hope we did not scare you off.

      • I think you’re getting a bit confused: what Howard was stating was that the Hyborian Age was not meant to be taken as a serious attempt to challenge established views on history, and that it’s a work of fiction. He’s most certainly NOT saying that the Hyborian Age isn’t earth: the Hyborian Age essay is all about how the Hyborian peoples would give rise to the tribes which would form modern history.

        The Hyborian Age is a mythical period of our earth’s prehistory, following the Thurian Age (the time of Atlantis, Mu, Lemuria and others) and before the Ice Age.

        • I may be mistaken.

          But I will look for the direct quote.

        • Well…

          I stand corrected.

          “Howard stated that the geographical setting of the Hyborian Age is that of our earth, but in a fictional version of a period in the past”

          One plate of crow please!

    • Howard’s Hyborean age is his FICTIONAL pre-history of Earth. As I recall in his FICTIONAL prehistory, Atlantis sank 20,000 years ago, and Conan lived approximatly 12,000 years ago. Does that place him in or around 10,000 BC? Well, perhaps, but that does not mean that Conan’s world is a stone age. That may be what the reality of 10,000 BC, but that is not Conan’s reality. His world was more advanced than that. He carried STEEL swords. The technology of weapons had readvanced beyond bronze. You shouldn’t use that movie from a couple of years ago as an indication of what Conan’s world should look like.

      I have to say, that I agree with those who have wondered if you have actually read Howard’s work. That is what a Conan movie’s look should be based on, not what may well have been the actually reality of 10,000 BC.

      I must say I think the new trailers suggests a film closer to Howard’s work. I am more optimistic about the flick now than I was. The first film was more about Milius’ ideas about what it meant to be a manly man…read some of the articles about the film from that time…than about being a faithful depiction of Howard’s Conan.

  8. 10,1000 BC + Clash of the Titans + 300 = Conan the Barbarian(Nippels)

    • As I recall pelasgian…300 was a hit. Just sayin’s so don’t be hatin’.

      And my post above was as response to your posts listed above. It didn’t appears where I thought it would…sorry for any confusion everyone.

  9. “Conan the Barbarian was scripted by Dylan Dog: Dead of Night writing duo Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer, in collaboration with Sean Hood (Halloween: Resurrection). The combination of those screenwriters with director Marcus Nispel (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Friday the 13th)”

    I am sorry but with the “talent” listed in that quote it can only lead me to one conclusion..That this movie will be bad..a whole new level of bad.. I hope not but it doesn’t look promising.

    • Gotta say, based on the trailer it really does not look good…


  10. Sounds like you guys are putting more thought and discussion into Conan than the makers of this steamy hunk of crap looking movie and why don’t they just show Conan already. Whats the big secret??? Why just show the villains in the pics and trailers????

    • Don’t know what you are refering to. Conan IS shown in the trailer…and in the photos posted with this story. }8^

  11. I saw a trailer for Conan when attending Thor a few days ago, and it looked pretty darn cool, I must say. Must be a different trailer, I guess. But I have hope for this movie to turn out just fine.

  12. I would be lead to believe that most people that are making some of the “jump to conclusions” on this site have not read any of REH stories.

    Most of you need to pick up Conan The Cimmerian and really read the first part The Hyborian Age.

    This will tell you so much about where and when this time occurred. It was not a stone age or even close to a Roman Age.

    Hey guess what it was an age undreamed of. LOL

    The movie is gonna be great.

  13. Some are questioning the style vs. the substance. http://j.mp/plwiKO

  14. This movie was SO BORING. THey made the same mistake Green Lantern made…. they gave the characters no depth. The fighting is constant to the point of being irrelevant and while Momoa’s Conan is far more faithful to the books, that isn’t necessarily a good thing for a movie.

  15. Movie was average at the very best. Fight sequences were rubbish and even the sand guys fight was hopeless. I got bored early and just wanted it to finish so i could leave. Jason would be a fantastic Conan given the right script but this aint it.
    Director should be banned from touching this franchise again.
    In short: rubbish film, rubbish script, rubbish directing.

  16. The new version of Conan was very average. Not bad, but not so good. I think the film creators had a hard time getting a handle on REH’s gritty age of Hyboria. Momoa was o.k.and some of the visuals scored a hit. Fighting could have been staged a little better. More study on longsword techniques of the late medieval period. When you think of Conan, think ugly, think primal Frazetta art and please read Howard. Maybe next time someone will get it right. I give this adaption 6 out of 10.