Attila the Hun is one of the more infamous and brutal figures in world history. Taking over as leader of the nomadic Hunnic Empire in 434, he led a series of bloody campaigns against the vast Roman Empire, pillaging and plunging along the way and showing very little (if any) mercy. His ruthless streak and reign of terror has been the fodder for many movies and miniseries, including a 2001 movie starring Gerard Butler. He also chopped heads off of mannequins with a hockey stick in Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, which is where you probably remember him.
And now Warner Bros. wants in on that sweet, sweet Attila action — but instead of going for a full-on epic biopic, the focus is being narrowed a bit. Deadline reports that the studio has bought a pitch from writer Nicholas Schoenfeld called Attila, which will instead focus on his formative years, before he began his siege on the Roman Empire. The tone of Attila is being compared to the upcoming Dracula: Year Zero, from first time feature director Gary Shore. Since that movie doesn’t actually exist yet, however, I have no idea what that means. I’ll just assume violent dram,a since it’s about Attila the freaking Hun.
Deadline also calls this an “origin story” — which I guess it is to an extent — but I have a personal issue with anything nonfiction being referred to as an “origin story.” That probably doesn’t irk anyone else, but, to me, it just feels like the wrong phrase to use considering the movie being discussed. Word choice pet peeve aside, I’ll definitely be giving Attila a shot once it eventually gets made; I’m a sucker for anything steeped in history, and Attila is a good subject to use since his life involved the kind of violence that could bring in the male demographic. I probably shouldn’t expect much more than that, since historical accuracy and attention to detail doesn’t really make for $100 million opening weekends.
Do you see an actioner centering on Attila the Hun coming off successfully?
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