Warner Bros Wins the Battle for 'Dungeons & Dragons' Movie Rights

May 7, 2013
Source: Deadline

Dungeons & Dragons

Well, this is a no brainer. But maybe 40 years too late? We'll find out soon enough if a name alone can make a hit. News has broke via Deadline that Warner Bros and producer Roy Lee (The Departed, Quarantine, Abduction, The Lego Movie) have obtained the rights to make a Dungeons & Dragons movie, based on the seminal fantasy role-playing game first invented by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson in 1974. However, the interesting thing is that the project is actually developing by way of another "free-standing" script merged into this project to become the Dungeons & Dragons movie. But it has all the right people involved so far.

According to the news, the original screenplay was called Chainmail, written by a "Frank Darabont protege" David Leslie Johnson. That project was developed originally based on an "obscure game that was also hatched by D&D designer Gary Gygax before he and Dave Arneson launched D&D," so it has a connection. This movie is being produced by Roy Lee and also Courtney Solomon, the Canadian filmmaker who directed the cheesy 2000 Dungeons & Dragons movie nobody saw. There's a lot of buzz around it already, with Deadline saying WB is "treating it as a big priority… The studio‚Äôs intention is to reboot the franchise for a new generation." Obviously makes sense following the success of "Game of Thrones" and The Hobbit trilogy.

For those who may still be unfamiliar, Dungeons & Dragons is a fantasy, role-playing, table-top multiplayer game originally designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson. Players create characters with attributes and embark upon fantasy adventures, with a Dungeon Master serving as the score-taker and storyteller. D&D is still popular today (if you've ever been to a Comic-Con, you know that) which means this has the potential to be big, but I'm intrigued to see them follow up The Hobbit and Warcraft first. Any readers big D&D fans?

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  • Chris McDermid
    For the love of God, Do the Dragonlance Trilogy!!! Excellent books, perfect characters and would make for top notch films!
    • Raistlin
      1000xYes. The Weis and Hickman stuff is great, and I would kill to have Tasslehoff on the screen
    • David Banner
      Agree, first 3 DragonLance novels were good, but I haven't read any of their other novelizations last 20 years? Maybe there's something better? Forgotten Realms/Drizzt Do'Urden or maybe a Dark Sun setting? And no, I have not seen the third D&D movie that came out on DvD last year-I'm thinking it's a pile of crap, am I right?
      • Lupo
        actuallay it's not THAT bad. It may be more fun if you played 4th edition 'cause you see some 4th edition stuff displayed (races & classes), as well as some general D&D references. So for me it was in line with the second movie - a B-Movie for fans of D&D
  • OfficialJab
    They brought back the creators of the other D&D movies for this? ...but why?
  • Ugh. Not sure about this.
  • si1ver
    Make a good adaption of the Drizzt novels= make hundreds of millions of dollars, make tens to hundreds of millions of fans, make a movie that can compete with any superhero movie this side of Batman/Supes and open up a movie universe as powerful ($$$) and deep as Marvel/DC/Star Wars/Star Trek/LOTR. . Alex, does D&D hold their own rights a la Marvel (and they're just making a one time deal with WB to make this movie)? Or does someone else hold the rights?
  • UNIlover
    If the film doesn't have Uni in it then it won't be D&D. Also Uni needs to ruin the escape every time in a secret and selfish bid to keep the kids there.
    • mooreworthy
      What was up with dressing the young girl in a fur bikini?
  • Brian Sleider
    Movie will not get the money needed to be a real blockbuster. Be prepared for a straight to dvd quality movie.
  • Bl00dwerK
    Cast RDJ. It'll make money...
  • GN Braun
    Drizzt, Dorn, or GTFO.
  • chris
    How do you make a generic D&D movie without it just looking like a collection of the usual fantasy devices any other genre film would churn out. It has to be tied to something more to distinguish it. Just *saying* it's a D&D movie isn't going to achieve anything.
    • si1ver
      Hey come on, its not like they just made up a story and then mixed it with a D&D script and called it D&D . . . ...oh wait.
  • mistermysteryguest
    Didn't they already do a crappy version of a D&D movie?
    • Nick
      Yes, as was stated in the article you appearantly didn't read.
      • mistermysteryguest
        Correct. I read the title and skimmed this particular article, since I'm not very interested.
    • Calen Nost
      The movie was acutally decent. But the general populace doesn't understand D&D and therefore, didn't get how the characters where portrayed in the film.
      • Sam Casey
        "How come everytime somethin' happens, YOU got to blame the mages?" "Well, when was the last time you saw a river catch on fire?!?" I LOVED the movie!
  • Harry
    Why is there no update on this? Universal is also makine a Dungeons & Dragons movie. Did you leave it all up to Ethan while you're in Cannes?
  • Mario Adi
    Liam Neeson as Tanis Half elven.
    • Sam Casey
      Sean Connery as Flint Fireforge!
  • Jason M. DeWitt
    Legend of huma, then into the dragonlance trilogy. That would be pretty sweet.
  • chris
    animated movie might be better. after all look what happened to the dragon ball z live action movie a classic anime destroyed by a live action movie. its something that shouldn't be rushed
  • Sam Casey
    I saw the live action D&D movie with Justin Waylin andDamon Wayans. I even saw the sequel. (Yes, there is a sequel) I liked'em.
  • Sam Casey
    I see all the articles talking about how WB is planning a Forgotten Realms movie and yet, all the comments I keep reading is about Drizzt. Is that the ONLY character people are familiar with? You got Mazzy, Cernd, Minsc and Boo, Jahiera, Imoen, Jon Irenicus, a whole host of characters. All you people can think about is just one? Drizzt was cool and all but, the world is a LOT bigger than he.




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