Renny Harlin Directing ‘Hercules 3D'; Competing with Brett Ratner’s ‘Hercules’ in 2014

Published 2 years ago by

hercules 3d renny harlin Renny Harlin Directing Hercules 3D; Competing with Brett Ratners Hercules in 2014

Last year, we got dual re-imaginings of the same fairy tale with Mirror Mirror and Snow White and the Huntsman; in 2013, two Die Hard-esque thrillers that involve the U.S. president and Oval Office being captured by terrorists are hitting theaters (Antoine Fuqua’s Olympus Has Fallen and Roland Emmerich’s White House Down), and, next year, audiences have their pick of two different takes on ancient world warrior Hercules.

Brett Ratner is directing Hercules (drawing from the “Hercules: The Thracian Wars” comic book), with Dwayne Johnson starring and production beginning in the next few months for a Summer 2014 release date. Millennium is competing with that MGM-Paramount picture, by releasing the $70 million Hercules 3D five months earlier.

THR reports that Hercules 3D has been developing since 2007, with screenwriter Hanna Weg and Sean Hood (Conan the Barbarian) crafting a “revisionist tale of the classic Greek myth.” Renny Harlin is directing, with casting for the film’s leading roles – eight in total, including the title character – taking place over the next few months. Principal photography is scheduled to commence in Bulgaria this May, with a March 2014 target release date.

Harlin is a filmmaker who made his mark during the 1990s, delivering a variety of successful thrillers (Cliffhanger), popcorn sequels (Die Hard 2) and cult action titles of the decade (The Long Kiss Goodnight); he was also responsible for the infamous blockbuster flop Cutthroat Island and the ‘camp classic’ Deep Blue Sea. During the 2000s, he was down-graded to horror B-movie fare (Exorcist: The Beginning, The Covenant) and televisions series like Burn Notice and White Collar. In other words: Hercules 3D is a second chance for Harlin to demonstrate his tentpole picture directing chops (or absence thereof).

Dwayne The Rock Johnson Hercules Renny Harlin Directing Hercules 3D; Competing with Brett Ratners Hercules in 2014

No surprise, Harlin’s already talking about the differences between Hercules 3D and Ratner’s project. The former, he says, is taking a relatively grounded and authentic approach to the Greek legend, rather than “a comic book, cartoony fantasy thing.” He also points to the multiple Hercules movies that have come before, as evidence that his and Ratner’s swords-and-sandals blockbusters may co-exist peacefully:

“I think these are very different kinds of movies in their approach to this legendary character. Obviously, Hercules has been portrayed in many different films, such as the Disney animated movie. I wish [Ratner] luck. Ancient Greek mythology is an endless source of good stories … Let’s see both movies be successful.”

As far as comparisons of quality go: Ratner’s Hercules has the casting of Johnson and acclaimed source material working in its advantage. Meanwhile, Hercules 3D seems more questionable based on the screenwriters involved; though, Harlin is a superior action filmmaker than Ratner (in my humble opinion, of course) and even his most artistically-bankrupt pictures – see: Cutthroat Island, which Harlin was essentially strong-armed into making – have entertainment value. Still, all things considered, Ratner’s project has my vote for the time being.

How about it: does Hercules 3D sound better, worse, or equally interesting (or not interesting) as Ratner’s Hercules? Let us know what you think in the comments section.

Source: THR

Follow Sandy Schaefer on Twitter @feynmanguy
TAGS: Hercules
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  1. depends on who they cast for me.

  2. Marvel should make one too…

    • THE GIFT!

    • Or Hercules could show up in a future thor/avengers movie, He has had a number of encounters with thor, and has been a part-time member of both the avengers and champions, so seeing him isnt out of the question

  3. I think Ratner will completely ruin it like he does every single movie he directs. Still haven’t enjoyed a single movie he had anything to do with. Except scarface, he was an uncredited boy on raft in pool. Stick to what you’re good at Brett.

  4. Harlin and The Rock teaming up would have been fun to see. It depends on who he casts, but I’ll likely watch since I’ve enjoyed most of his work.

  5. be aware of……. The Snow White Syndrome!

    • Hehe in my day it was the extinction level event meteor syndrome (armagedon/deep impact). For the life of me I don’t understand studios sometimes. In 2015 it will prob be the superhero team-up syndrome (avengers 2 vs. jla vs. xmen)

  6. I love Greek mythology I look forward to seeing both films come 2014

    • @Conor

      Heracles is Greek, Hercules is Roman.


  7. They should all the money they would spend on these two movies and donate them to arts programs for schools…..

  8. 2 Terrible directors on a cool premise. Hercules on Cutt Throat Island or Hercules the Last Stand. Yeah I am Out

  9. I dont understand how Herculeus gets two movies in one year. Yet Flash, Wonder Woman, Black Panther, and quite more havent seen there big screen debuts

  10. ratner will blow hjercules 3d out of the water one is animated and ratners is a fictional live movie. Please no competion…

  11. Harlin for me !
    But I watch both of course :)

  12. Two craptacular directors jumping on the 300/Immortal/Clash of the titans(crappy remake) bandwagon. With these directorial pedigrees behind the projects I’d wait for these films to go bargain-basement sub-£5 price-bracket before buying.

    *edit*; actually on second-thoughts don’t bother, i won’t rent them either, I value my time at more than these films would take from me to suffer them. ^^

  13. HERCULES (forget the Greek “Heracles” or “Herakles” because the studios do not find it marketable) will for the first time come to the screen with strong (or at least “good”) production values.

    We know Ratner’s film is based on a comic book (sorry, “graphic novel”) but could take on that DARK KNIGHT thing (I mean “look”); Harlin’s is the wildcard but more intriguing with its story “grounded” upon the Greek myth (allegedly).

    Nevertheless, both films will necessarily be “popcorn movies” going after that PG-13 demographic. And with my knowledge of the herculean legend, this means the hero’s homo-erotic relationship with Hyllos/Hylas, his impregnating 50 women in a single night (and sprawning “The Children of Hercules”), and murdering his wife and their children will not make it into the screenplay — certainly not the shooting script.

    So what will be the fundamental difference between these two flicks? Ratner’s film will follow the 12 Labors…so, Harlin’s could actually be the 12 Labors.

    That lion skin pelt is iconic and a very strong selling point for either film, the spoils from one of Hercules’ labors, and a shame if it’s not featured.

    Question is: will these movies be an invention, an achievement, an ATM, or a screen-saver? Of course, this can be said about every studio-funded motion picture making it through the birth canal these days.