Pin It
Favorite

Take Two 

by Luke Baumgarten & r & & r & Tristan and Isolde & r & & r & MEMO & r & & r & To: Hack Screenwriters & r & From: Archetypal Studio Exec & r & RE: Future Adaptations & r & & r & Hot diggity-damn, I love the Dark Ages. Have you heard about this? They're great. There are all these legends floating around about amazing things and incredibly noble people who make great film fodder. King Arthur, Robin Hood, whatever -- it's all good. Everyone knows of them, everyone feels a connection to them, but no one really knows anything about them.


It's like a blank slate that's still, y'know, completely pregnant with a collective mythos. You can say anything you want and still get peeps in seats. Don't worry about historical truths, because there were none. Especially in Britain. Those dumb-ass 6th-century Picts and Celts couldn't write to save their lives. It's awesome. When written records do pop up, it's 300 years later, after the Normans invaded and brought their Franco-Scandinavian heritage (blonde hair, cr & egrave;me brulee, whatever). The place was a mess, and absolutely brimming with everything people crave (wars, hero worship, and that marry-the-ugly-nobleman-for-money, have-sex-with-hot-man-vassal-for-fun theme).


Take this new thing, Tristan and Isolde. I'm ecstatic about it. I talked with Dean Georgaris (screenwriter, worth 10 of you morons) and he said the thing basically wrote itself. Tristan's uncle and rival for Isolde's hand, Lord Marke, was apparently a real person from Cornwall, so Georgaris set the film there.


Beyond that, though, all he had were these conflicting oral traditions. So he picked the ones that were the most Hollywood. In one, Tristan is a fatty, but no one likes fat people, so he nixed it. In another, Tristan slays a dragon, but that's too LOTR. In most of them, he's a member of the Round Table, but we all know how King Arthur's been doing at the box office lately (craptastic), so Georgaris kept that out, too. What remained was a tragic love story that's stood the test of, like, 15 centuries or whatever, while still being highly marketable.


Granted, James Franco can't act worth a crap and what I'm told are Rufus Sewell's considerable acting chops are totally wasted, but that's not what we're here for, is it? If you're going to drag people through the Dark Ages, it had better be the one they recognize (Prince of Thieves, Knight's Tale, etc.). T & amp;I does all those things. It's safe, it panders, it's got a kick-ass, timeless storyline, good battle scenes and incredibly childish dialogue. Toddlers will understand this movie, no problem. Toddlers buy tickets, people! The only problem is that Lord Marke is too damn nice about his nephew sleeping with his wife, but people die tragically.


So as you search for your next project, continue to dig through old legends and pitch those you feel are the most Hollywood-ready. (Bonus points for tragic, Shakespearian-ish elements!)

  • Pin It

Latest in News

  • Rich Man, Poor Men
  • Rich Man, Poor Men

    Can the wealthiest U.S. president ever help the poorest U.S. citizens?
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • La Resistance
  • La Resistance

    Michael Moore, Congressional Democrats and local progressives: How they are resisting Donald Trump's agenda
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • Must-See TV?
  • Must-See TV?

    Alternatives to the inauguration (and how to make watching more fun if you have to)
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun
GSI’s Business After Hours

GSI’s Business After Hours @ Hotel RL by Red Lion at the Park

Thu., Jan. 26, 5-7 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by n/a

  • Iron Upgrade
  • Iron Upgrade

    The new one is smart and funny and action-packed, and it’s bigger and better and sleeker. And Downey does it again, this time ramping up Stark’s arrogant wisecracking, telling anyone who’ll listen (mostly women) that, via the creation of his powerful Iron Man suit, he’s brought years of uninterrupted peace to the world.
    • May 12, 2010
  • Seeing Gay
  • Seeing Gay

    A festival showing GLBT from all angles
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • Get Out the Vote
  • Get Out the Vote

    With all the uncertainty in the world these days, hot wings and cold beer are two things we can get behind
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • One Free Shave

    Donald Trump might have merited a honeymoon with voters had he managed his transition better
    • Dec 29, 2016
  • The Landed and the White

    How Americans followed tradition when they voted for Trump
    • Jan 12, 2017
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

Comment


Briefs


marijuana


green zone


Politics


Readers also liked…

  • Recall and Response
  • Recall and Response

    The attempt to remove Spokane Mayor David Condon from office may be a long shot, but he isn't taking any chances
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • Running Dry
  • Running Dry

    How Wild Waters slid from the top water park in the Inland Northwest to an abandoned ruin
    • Jun 24, 2015

© 2017 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation