What We Need in a Dungeons and Dragons Film
We have a TON of time to see the announced Dungeons and Dragons go through production nightmare but in the meantime let’s do some speculation as to what we’d like to see in a D&D movie series. With Ron Letterman (Goosebumps, Monsters vs. Aliens) attached to direct, I think we have a certain direction to work with. David Leslie Johnson, who wrote the fantasy adventure Wrath of the Titans, will be writing the script for the film. Ansel Elgort has been rumored to be in the lead role for a while, but with the film slated to release in 2021, we will see how that goes. Here are a few things I hope they put into this film series:
1. Get the tone right!: With the biggest success Letterman has to date being the recent Goosebumps film starring Jack Black, its clear this isn’t going to be a hard R fantasy series. Let us hope this is more LOTR than Eragon. A PG-13 fantasy series can definitely be quality but considering Letterman’s previous films, I just hope they do not go full young adult series. A similar tone to Clash and Wrath of the Titans would be an acceptable and realistic tone to the movie for me.
2. Establish a larger world: The film is rumored to take place in the Forgotten Realms. This is a good sign that they will have a large universe to expand upon. The market is lacking a consistent fantasy movie series since The Hobbit ended. They need to establish this as a franchise and that means creating a world larger than just this film.
3. Honor the source material: The great thing about D&D is it can be customized as needed. There are many incredible homebrews out there and it’s wonderful, but to get this correct they will need to include Wizards of the Coast and honor what the players know and love. The reports are the Wizards of the Coast IS involved so they’re on the right track.
4. Establish Interesting Characters: There has been a recent report of a group running a campaign for 35 years. If the movie is done correctly this could be a lasting franchise that captures a rabid fan base. In order to do this, they will need to create characters that will last. Character creation is one of the most in depth part of the D&D so they had better make sure that these characters are top notch.
5. MAKE IT GOOD: This seems obvious, but the last big budget attempt was SO BAD that they will only have one chance to establish a new franchise with a ton of potential. Players will not tolerate another half-assed attempt to put together a money grab. One thing is without a doubt, they need to make this movie for people that play the game, while also being able to capture a new audience who is hungry for some classic high fantasy adventure.
I have a certain level of cautious optimism when it comes to this announcement. As a newly rabid fan of D&D myself, I am excited for the possibility of a well-made fantasy adventure set in the Forgotten Realms. Great news though, if the movie sucks, we still have our own adventures and characters to enjoy. For more D&D talk see our recent podcast episode here!