About six months ago, Warner Bros. announced it was working on a new Dungeons & Dragons movie based on a fantasy role-playing game franchise that basically uses dice and players' imaginations to tell a story. The question on everyone's mind was how will the studio translate the game for the big screen?
In a new interview with Collider at DICE 2016, producer Roy Lee said the new Dungeons & Dragons movie will take their inspiration from Guardians of the Galaxy and The Lord of the Rings.
“This new Dungeons & Dragons will be a Guardians of the Galaxy-tone movie in a Tolkien-like universe. Because when you think of all the Hobbit movies and The Lord of the Rings, they have an earnestness to them, and to see something fun, a Raiders romp inside that world, I feel is something the audience has not seen before.”
So far, so intriguing. Orphan screenwriter David Leslie Johnson has penned the script, and he believes that Warner Bros. is really keen on the property.
“I think it will really be moving forward quickly, and I don’t anticipate it not getting greenlit this year, mostly because Warner Bros. has DC now, and LEGO, and the Harry Potter universe that’s being cultivated as their franchises. I believe they see Dungeons & Dragons as something that could be cultivated as a multi-universe movie where there will be spinoffs from the first movie being in Forgotten Realms and subsequent movies being in different worlds.”
The Forgotten Realms is a campaign setting for the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game. The premise of the Forgotten Realms is that a long time ago, our Earth and the world of the Forgotten Realms were closely connected, but as time has passed, Earth’s inhabitants have mostly forgotten about that other world. The continent is named Faerûn, which is part of the fictional world of Abeir-Toril (or Toril for short). It’s an Earth-like planet with many real-world influences (think a medieval setting), but unlike Earth, Toril is shared by humans, dwarves, elves, goblins and orcs, as well as other creatures.
There are also plenty of other worlds in Dungeons & Dragons, including Greyhawk, Dragonlance, Ravenloft, Dark Sun and Eberron, just to name a few. So Warner Bros. has its pick of the many D&D universes to mine for the big screen. As for how much they’ll pull from the source material, Lee said:
“everyone who’s involved with it now, especially the writer of the first draft is a fan from the very beginning starting with Chainmail, which turned into Dungeons & Dragons, so you’ll see things that are very faithful to the source material as well as new elements are being incorporated with help from Wizards of the Coast, who are giving a lot of input on the script.”
Lee also added that the movie will take place in the realm rather than having people from our world transported there and that the Yawning Portal will feature prominently and “it’s going to be one of people’s favorite set pieces.”