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gladiator wheat field

The Great unmade? Gladiator 2: A Life Lived To The Maximus

  Ridley Scott’s rejuvenation of the toga / swords and sandals epics of yore with Gladiator had everything – epic scale, brilliant battles, fully realised worlds, political backstabbing, madness, grief and vengeance. Russell Crowe fully convinced as the General betrayed and sold into slavery, doomed to fight for the plebs amusement, and determined to revenge […]

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Roger Rabbit toon patrol

The Great Unmade?: Who Discovered Roger Rabbit / Toon Platoon

  Even cartoons get the blues. After raking in the dollars, Who Framed Roger Rabbit was surely as deserving of a sequel as any mainstream studio film. However, rivalry between production partners Disney and Amblin Entertainment, escalating costs and disputes over the script, plugged Roger Rabbit before he could interact with hapless humans again. A […]

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Leningrad

The Great Unmade? Sergio Leone’s Leningrad

Italian director Sergio Leone’s The Good, The Bad And The Ugly is considered by many to be “the greatest American Civil War picture ever made”. Here, he displayed an eye for large scale action and drama, combined with impressive research, for scenes such as the bridge battle and the Union prison camp. It was in 1969 […]

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star wars splinter of the mind

Star Wars Splinter Of The Mind’s Eye Story Conference

In the midst of fraught  post-production on Star Wars, George Lucas was planning ahead. As we reported in our previous The Great Unmade: Splinter Of The Mind’s Eye, Lucas was hedging his bets. He wasn’t convinced that his space opera would be a great success, and considered using his ghost author for the novelization, Alan […]

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robin hood ridley and russell

The Great Unmade? Nottingham

The tale of Robin Hood is one oft told, many times on film alone, including the recent Ridley Scott / Russell Crowe team up, sold to Crowe as a chance to make a “sequel” of sorts to their previous historic rip-snorter,Gladiator.  Robin Hood sprang from an original “hot” script called Nottingham, yet the two articles bear as much relation […]

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The Great Unmade: Return of the Thing, Part 3

(CONTINUED FROM PART 2) Act 5 Wise finally gets info on what’s beneath the town: an old Cold War nuclear missile silo base which was decommissioned in the 60s. Sure enough, prowling around the tunnels, Little Bear and Gates find themselves in a giant, empty missile silo. They’re not alone as the coyote appears. And […]

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The Great Unmade: Return of the Thing, Part 2

(CONTINUED FROM PART 1) Act 5 Several times throughout, we’ve briefly run across a utility man named Rafferty. As he’s out checking connections, he finds himself face-to-face with the coyote. Soon after, Little Bear follows the animal tracks to Rafferty’s truck where the man is lacing up his boots. Their conversation is terse, their looks […]

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thing 15

The Great Unmade: Return of the Thing, Part 1

For those who don’t know, for a little over two years, I’ve been producing and co-hosting a podcast series called Masters of Carpentry, examining the works of John Carpenter film-by-film. It’s taken up quite a bit of my creative time and energies, hence me dropping off on contributing articles to Cinetropolis (especially the ponderous and […]

lord of the rings john howe

The Great Unmade? John Boorman’s The Lord of The Rings

If you think John Boorman’s Zardoz was bat-shit weird, take a moment to consider how his unmade adaptation of JRR Tolkien’s The Lord Of The Rings would have turned out. By his collaborator Rospo Pallenberg’s own admission, “We were propelled by what we liked, and invented as we went along.” The film would have opened on Tolkien working in […]

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star wars 1

The Great Unmade? The Early Drafts of Star Wars, Part 2

Following part one of my read-thru, with his second draft, dated January 1975, George Lucas began stripping down his massive manuscript of ideas and refocusing them into something much more budget conscious and achievable for the time. The Skywalker is a prophetic figure, a man who learned how to manipulate the spiritual fabric of reality […]

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