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Did Fantasy Movies Fail To Make A Resurgence?

Another thought-provoking read from The Movie Blog’s John Campea – Lord Of The Rings – Why Fantasy Failed To Make A Resurgence – in which he says that Lord of the Rings: Return of the King made it more difficult for fantasy films to be produced. A sampling:

Many people suggested that the massive success of ROTK would OPEN THE DOOR to the fantasy genre for studios. Seems to make sense right? The problem for fantasy, is that ROTK was a little TOO SUCCESSFUL. ROTK didn’t swing the door open for fantasy…it slammed the door shut.

He does note the success of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (writing it off as fairy tale instead of fantasy) and the upcoming Eragon which he notes that people are already dismissing it as a LOTR knock-off based on conjecture.

Surely the Harry Potter films could be added to that list of successful fantasy films. As for Eragon, I’ve read it and while I thought it was a very entertaining book, it clearly uses the same plot outline as LOTR, and even Star Wars (as noted in the review).

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

6 Comments on Did Fantasy Movies Fail To Make A Resurgence?

  1. Oh, nooooooooo!!!! He mentioned **that** **book** and left the comments section open. Let the parade of smiley-laden commentaries continue!

  2. Ack John?!?! Why would you do that!?!

    It’s his way of getting back at me for locking that other post ;).

  3. Wha…? Don’t worry, it’s still locked for comments. I checked before I posted to be sure. Try refreshing your browser cache, noobs.

  4. :):D(6):-@:-P:-S:^)(H);-):-$|-):O:(8o|

    Sorry Fred but when someone says “push this button” I can’t resist.

    OK, on point:

    LOTR worked because the average joe moviegoer acknowledes (or is at least aware) that LOTR earned the respect that a lot of fantasy novels never get, and that somehow justified their attendance when I am sure that Eragon will draw only those who have read the book.

    Fantasy movies only succeed if the actors take the material seriously. Look no further than the Conan movie for confirmation of this. The first Conan, very serious, dark and brooding film. The second and third Conan, campy hack and slash romp. The Highlander movies, same thing.

    LOTR would have tanked with anyone other than Jackson at the helm.

  5. He (and I) meant that now this thread would become the haven for smiley-comments. :-@

  6. I think the Fantasy film genre

    is where SF used to be before

    Star Wars 1977: Asleep at the

    wheel. There has yet to be a

    break out Fantasy film in the

    same way that Star Wars did for SF.

    Sure LOTR made the average movie

    goer aware of the fantasy genre

    but I think the Fantasy film genre

    is going to suffer by the HP stigma

    until the Fantasy film genre gets its

    break out movie like Star Wars. After

    Star Wars 1977 SF fim exploded. The Fantasy

    film genre needs to have its own “Star

    Wars”. LOTR wasn’t it.


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