Filmmaker Zack Snyder has spoken about his thought process behind choosing to set his King Arthur retelling in the age of the Old West. Former DC Extended Universe director is coming off his Netflix zombie heist thriller Army of the dead, which debuted to mixed to positive reviews from critics. While teasing the possibility of a movie sequel, Snyder is currently working overseeing the feature and anime prequels of the set’s success.
In the lead up to the release of his other movie this year, HBO Max’s Zack Snyder’s Justice League, the director revealed that he was working on developing a “faithful“Recount of the King Arthur legend. After keeping mum on project-specific details, Snyder recently teased that the film would change its setting to the American Gold Rush. In comics, he has more thoughts on the world of King Arthur.
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In an interview with IMDb’s Movies that changed my life podcast, Snyder talked about why the movie is set in the Old West. Reflecting on the British roots of the Arthurian legend and its American roots, Snyder described the thought process as an attempt to find a bridge between the two worlds. Read what Snyder had to say below:
“My thesis was, when I was working on this idea, that I tried to take the Arthurian legend, which is literally other people’s mythology. Like, I’m not English, and so I … but I love that mythological story. And then I thought oh what if i superimpose it on top of the american west and just try to make it be like america mythology or frankly the mythology i grew up with, and see if i cant make those things work, ya you know “.
Attempts to adapt the legend of King Arthur to the big screen have often failed to truly capture the majesty of the epic without feeling as rooted in stone as his legendary sword Excalibur. Although Snyder’s filmography certainly points to a mixed bag of stories, there is no denying that his ambitious filmmaking style would fit the material well. If he were to bring some of the same great production values that he has brought to his previous works, most notably his adaptation of Frank Miller’s 300, sure to be an exciting attempt to say the least.
Breaking tradition by changing the scene of your King Arthur Retelling may seem unfaithful to some, but it actually gives Snyder the opportunity to also incorporate elements from other legends regarding the titular figure rather than those that continually adapt to the screen. With no study currently attached to the project, it seems likely that word about a proper development cycle will not get through for some time. But with several other studios and Netflix showing increased interest in working with Snyder after his infamous breakup with Warner Bros., he could certainly find a way to bring him to life sooner rather than later.
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