Robert Rodriguez has just secured a deal with Sony that will see him helm his dream project for the big screen; the live action version of Frank Frazetta’s Fire and Ice. Rodriguez – who describes this as his passion project – has been trying to make the homage to his friend for years now, and it looks like he is one step closer to achieving that dream.
Sony are hoping to turn the concept based on Franzetta’s dramatic work – which Rodriguez initially proposed to them back in 2011 – into a fantasy franchise, with the initial synopsis still thought to be in play. Here is the original synopsis from 2011, which was taken from Ralph Bakshi’s story, written as a story to Franzetta’s initial artwork:
“From his stronghold in Ice Peak, the evil Nekron sends forth a wave of deadly glaciers, forcing humanity to retreat to Fire Keep, a kingdom ruled by a generous king. When King Jarol’s daughter Teegra is kidnapped, young warrior Larn teams with the mysterious and legendary Dark Wolf, to rescue the princess and the realm from Nekron’s evil sorcery.”
Just when it seemed like the project had stalled indefinitely. However, Rodriquez hinted back in August – during an interview with Comic Book Resourses – that the film would be going into production saying that “soon we’ll announce some stuff.” Rodriquez then talked about the plans he hoped to accomplish with the adaptation:
“You know, I knew [Frazetta] very well, and I grew up with his work on my walls. I understood. I’ve talked to him at great length about what people did incorrectly when they tried to adapt his work but they didn’t get it. He would complain about comics and stuff that were done that were just really violent, and he said, “They didn’t really understand my work.” So really, I would do it in a way where it was as if he was there with me. I would be watching it from his point of view. I understood his point of view, I think, better than anybody was ever going to try and do a movie. So I would want his spirit there, and I’d be looking out for him in that. I would almost consider giving him a co-directing credit! You know, I’m going to do it like I did with Frank [Miller], so much in just turning his paintings into movies. When you’re doing that, you’re no longer just adapting and making it your own. You’re really trying to do what he did. And unfortunately, he tried do it — he did “Fire and Ice.” It didn’t get there because the technology, it was never quite what he wanted.
I’m trying to help complete that vision for him — like, be that third collaborator, between Ralph Bakshi and him — Ralph’s one of the producers on it — to try and use technology to catch us up to finish what they started.“
Frazetta’s work is truly fantastic and insane stuff. However, with Sony wanting to turn it into a frachise; that means means there is a potential to turn the project into PG13 fare, to encompass a wider audience. To do Franzetta’s work any kind of justice, this seems like a formidable task, giving the material they have to work with. Personally we would like to see Rodriguez up the ante in terms of violence in the same vain as Planet Terror. I seems like the perfect material for Rodriguez, and he is renowned for being able to deliver some spectacular imagery on relatively smaller budgets in comparison to other directors. We will be sure to keep you updated on any further announcements.
Are you glad the proverbial cogs are back in motion to get Franzetta’s imagery onto the big screen?