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Conan, what is best in life? To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of your bones when you stand up from your throne. It’s funny how priorities change as you grow older.
That’s something writer and producer Chris Morgan (Wanted, The Fast and the Furious series) talked about with Hero Complex regarding Arnold Schwarzenegger’s return to the role in the upcoming Legend of Conan.
He said one of the biggest hurdles was convincing the 65-year-old Schwarzenegger that this wasn’t a remake, but instead a way to catch up with the character he first played in 1982’s Conan the Barbarian.
“He’s not going out and fighting battles, but he ends up getting drawn into something,” Morgan said. “And he has to access the barbarian he was in his youth. I love that Conan has been many things in his life, notably a pirate, a major tactician and a commander of men. In this movie, we’re going to tap into some of those things – things you haven’t seen on screen yet.”
Morgan went on to explain his vision of this older, more seasoned version of Conan. “I want the warrior whose joints have started to fuse together, who has to crack the cartilage so he can pick up a sword again,” he said. “I want the guy who’s not necessarily lost a step, but there’s some rust he has to shake off. I want to embrace that. It makes it a greater hero story. Conan needs to be faced with challenges. The greatest challenge to him isn’t the armies that are set before him. It’s, on some level, self-doubt, a little bit of slowing down and forcing yourself to be heroic beyond what people expect of you. What I don’t want is for him to step back in and look the same. That would defeat the purpose of our story.”
While Morgan clearly has the credentials and enthusiasm to write The Legend of Conan, he might not have the time. He’s committed to penning the seventh installment of The Fast and the Furious franchise, which might prevent him from tackling his favorite barbarian in time for the film’s planned 2014 release.
“No matter what, I’ll be there every step of the way,” Morgan said. “Whether it’s penning this quickly or selecting the writer, it’s me guiding the process or being a real honest-to-god producer. I’m excited either way. I’m really, really stoked.”