First Teaser Trailer for Conan the Barbarian

First Teaser Trailer for Conan the Barbarian

conan-3dThe first trailer for the new 3D remake of Conan the Barbarian has been unleashed this week by Lionsgate.

The trailer is quite brief (one minute), and doesn’t show much beyond a lot of smoke, a few poorly nutritioned villains, a beautiful woman, and some goofy dialog on how to achieve contentment through slaying.  That part reminded me of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but with more swords and a better soundtrack.

The brief film description reads:

The tale of Conan the Cimmerian and his adventures across the continent of Hyboria on a quest to avenge the murder of his father and the slaughter of his village.

I don’t remember anything about his father in the original version. But as Howard Andrew Jones is constantly telling me, I probably need to read more Robert E. Howard.

The finished film will be released on August 11, 2011.  It is directed by Marcus Nispel and stars Jason Momoa (Stargate: Atlantis) as Conan.

The film also stars Ron Perlman, Stephen Lang, and Rose McGowan, who’s preparing her own take on a Robert E. Howard character in the upcoming Red Sonja, also scheduled for release this year.

Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Always nice to see a S&S flick. I just hope they don’t butcher the character too much.

Has anybody seen Wolfhound (2007)? From the trailer it looks pretty decent.


Bill Ward

The thing Dave posted looks better, and probably cost a tenth what the new 3D Conan will.

John, the revenge plot isn’t from the stories but is carried over from the first film when Conan went after Thulsa Doom (Kull was apparently too busy counting picts to notice one of his villains escaped into another story cycle).

I LOVE the first film, and have no problem with adapting material and changing things if the end result is good — but I get a total crap vibe from this new one.

The Dungeoneering Dad

“…and some goofy dialog on how to achieve contentment through slaying.”

That quote is lifted nearly wholesale from one of Howard’s Conan stories.


“…and some goofy dialog on how to achieve contentment through slaying.”
That quote is lifted nearly wholesale from one of Howard’s Conan stories.”

Yes – much discussion on the REH forum about that.

It is a line from REH, but seeing as how this screenplay has nothing to do with that story, it seems forced & silly.

In that respect, this is starting to feel like the first movie with random elements of REH’s writings tossed into a jumbled stew instead of something coherent.

Ah well. I can’t say I’m surprised.

Back to the original stories.

John Hocking

He shrugged his shoulders. “I have known many gods. He who denies them is as blind as he who trusts them too deeply. I seek not beyond death. It may be the blackness averred by the Nemedian skeptics, or Crom’s realm of ice and cloud, or the snowy plains and vaulted halls of the Nordheimer’s Valhalla. I know not, nor do I care. Let me live deep while I live; let me know the rich juices of red meat and stinging wine on my palate, the hot embrace of white arms, the mad exultation of battle when the blue blades flame and crimson, and I am content. Let teachers and priests and philosophers brood over questions of reality and illusion. I know this: if life is illusion, then I am no less an illusion, and being thus, the illusion is real to me. I live, I burn with life, I love, I slay, and am content.”
–from Queen of the Black Coast by Robert E. Howard

I can’t say I like the teaser preview very much, but I have to salute the fact that they were willing to make the only thing we hear the Cimmerian say be in the words of his creator.

Lydia Eickstaedt


While I can understand finding the original Conan movie a little mediocre– it is extremely slow before it gets moving! –it seems what you’re looking for in this movie isn’t quite in the spirit of the original? Any ironic capacity Conan got in the first movie seems to have come from being played by Schwarzenegger, who has a great sense of humor and a sarcastic disposition, even in his early career when he can barely speak English.

You MIGHT be entertained by Conan: the Musical, which takes clips from the original and makes good use of auto-tuning. I assure you that afterwards, lines like “Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentation of their women!” will seem much funnier, if not also cooler and possibly ironic. I actually ended up watching the original movies because of that silly video! But, at the same time, while I find the video hilarious and the song tremendously catchy, the musical isn’t really in the same spirit as the movie.

It’s sort of a case where they’re shooting to be serious, they actually have a pretty decent budget for the time period, and did what seems to be a decent adaptation of the script. (Sure, it’s Thulsa Doom and not someone else…but it’s James Earl Jones and he’s pretty brilliant!)

Can’t speak for the preview– I can’t watch it just yet. When I do, I’ll try to come back to comment. After last year’s awful remake of Clash of the Titans though, I have to admit my hopes are feeble in the face of my grim suspicions concerning the new Conan movie!


A terrible trailer for a terrible movie. Nobody in the business has the courage to make a great sword and sorcery movie, much less a faithful adaption of a Howard tale. Hollywood doesn’t even have the courage to be faithful to The Hobbit because, oh no, there isn’t a female character. Pathetic.


Frankly, I would just really love to see a decent S&S film before I die.
it isn’t s&s exactly but is the closest thing you will see to a decent s&s film


Never seen a good S&S movie? What! Can it be that you have never seen the magnificence that is KRULL!?!??

John R. Fultz

John: If you thought the first CONAN movie was “mediocre”, I’d suggest going back and re-watching it. John Milius did an AMAZING job with that movie. I saw it when I was 12 and really into the Savage Sword magazines and Conan comics, as well as reading my fair share of Robert E. Howard paperbacks. It really delivers, and I remember people who weren’t into Conan at all going “That was a great movie!” It still holds up, in my opinion. In fact, I have three movie-board posters on my wall, overlooking my writing desk: Pulp Fiction, Temple of Doom, and Conan the Barbarian. The musical score by Basil Poledouris was also incredible. James Earl Jones was a perfect Thulsa Doom…and the fact that the movie was Rated R (unlike its lame sequel), allowed it to feature all the blood, gore, and sex that the original tales evoked. CONAN THE BARBARIAN pulled no punches, and remains a classic of fantasy film. The only thing that even came close to it in the pre-LORD OF THE RINGS era was EXCALIBUR. Milius would go on to work his same magic in HBO’s ROME tv series a couple of decades later.

As for this new CONAN…the trailer didn’t impress me much. I like the original Howard dialogue, but as someone above pointed out, it wasn’t delivered with quite enough gravity. Seemed like someone who was TRYING to sound like a barbarian. With Arnold S. in the original, his awkward Austrian accent and general oafish nature worked extremely well to evoke the Cimmerian. Only view this new film will prove its worth or lack thereof. However, I’m glad to hear that Tyler Bates is doing the soundtrack–his music for 300 was and is amazing.

As for the poster…they obviously were inspired by the classic Frazetta image of Conan standing on a hill of the dead. That’s also a good sign (even if the nake slave girl is absent).

My fingers are crossed that this will be a genuinely good movie. But I’m not holding my breath.

Bill Ward

Fultz is dead on: the first Conan is objectively awesome. You need to check it out again John.

John Hocking

Okay, just once then I shut up.
Arnold’s Conan the Barbarian presents REH’s original character as a lumbering idiot who spends half his life in chains and is solely motivated, indeed enslaved, by his need for revenge. Any trace of Howard’s wanderer, reaver and elemental free spirit is utterly absent.
As a fantasy film it is bloody and diverting.
As a translation of Howard’s work it is a shameful travesty.

Ever see the original Dunwich Horror film with Sandra Dee? When anyone tells me they think Arnold’s Conan film captures REH’s spirit, I feel exactly as I would if someone told me Dee’s Dunwich Horror captured the essential Howard Phillips Lovecraft.
I invite those who advocate Arnold’s film to watch it again themselves, but remove the rose-colored lens of nostalgia first.

Bill Ward

You are right, John, as a translation it fails on a lot of levels (but I’d argue not all), but as a movie it works — it’s a great fantasy movie, one of the absolute best ever (imo).

I have no problem liking both Conans, or both LoTRs, etc.

And I wouldn’t say any trace of Howard’s wanderer is absent, film1 Conan spends a good chunk of time adventuring, even if a lot of it is implied through a montage — it’s only once he gets a whiff of Thulsa Doom that he takes off on a quest of revenge.

And I also acknowledge nostalgia as a factor, but there is a big difference in what I see as nostalgia buoying up a weak film (Krull –with a wink at Chris above), and making some of us gush in extravagant ways about a very good film indeed (Conan1 — let me count the ways!).

Anyway, as somebody that I think may have come closest to capturing the spirit of Howard’s COnan in their own work, John, I will say that I have the utmost respect for your opinion, and do really get the points you are making. Conan1 is only sort of a little bit Howard, but it’s a lotta bit good despite that.

Got a feeling we’ll all be seeing eye to eye on the new one, though…..

Jeff Stehman

Sort of an 80s SWORD AND THE SORCERER / CONAN vibe to it.

Ah, yes, Sword and the Sorcerer. A delightful film because the protagonist–and only the protagonist–knew he was in a goofy movie. There haven’t been many like that.

But I’m in agreement with John about the original Conan. I enjoy that movie, but it really suffered from Arnold’s acting ability and the things that were done to try to get around it. Had he the moderate acting chops he developed later in his career, the movie would have been fantastic.

But I have to thank everyone for the comments. They’ve led me into a new area of YouTube. Who knew there were so many horrible S&S movies out there? To Netflix!



I’m reasonably certain The Hobbit would make a wonderful profit without conjuring up some elf princess to appease those women who simply won’t go to a movie exclusively about males.
I also thought that artistic courage contained at least some element of creating art for its own sake and not just for the sake of making additional profits. Of course, you are correct and Hollywood is purely a business – and it is why I find myself enjoying fewer movies every year.

Jackson Kuhl

I thought the 1982 Conan was universally despised by Howard fans, so it’s nice to see some love here. Personally I feel the film does a fine job echoing the themes and Weltschmerz in Howard’s stories. Plus one could use it to illustrate an entire seminar on Nietzschean existentialism.

The last time I watched it through (a few years ago), I was particularly struck by the geography, shot entirely in Spain. I very much want to travel to Spain as a result. Apparently you can still go to the film locations and find relics. There’s also an excellent video comparing scenes from the movie with the modern-day landscapes.

Conan the Destroyer is nowhere near as good but I have a soft spot for the crazy wonderful supporting cast: Tracey Walter, Mako, Wilt Chamberlin, Grace Jones, Sarah Douglas, and of course Olivia d’Abo. I mean, c’mon. All that — plus Schwarzenegger!? You can’t get better casting.

Jeff Stehman

Yeah, John, that second one was bad. But it has my most-watched scene from either movie. I love the big battle outside the treasure room. The one beginning with “Enough talk!”

John R. Fultz

J.H.: All due respect, it’s NOT nostalgia. I’ve watched the movie a dozen times since I was 12 (I’m 41 now), and it DOES hold up.

J.O.: Thirty years??? Come on, man! Now you are honor-bound to give it a fresh viewing. I think you’ll be surprised at how good a fantasy film it really is. Right up at the top of the list with EXCALIBUR and LOTR.

To Howard Purists: Movies are NEVER going to perfectly represent the author’s work…although film makers have gotten better over the decades at staying true to the source material (i.e. Jackson’s LOTR), these are movies. They must follow certain rules in order to get made. The trick to enjoying movies is to NOT compare them to the books…instead, enjoy it as a movie. Then you can go back and read the books. Yes, books are ALWAYS better than the movie.

However, CONAN THE BARBARIAN rules. Bill Ward, you know what I’m talking about.

John O’Neill: I await your revised opinion.


John R. Fultz

PS. People would have remembered CtB as a great movie if the horribly neutered, under-budget sequel wasn’t so terrible. The studio was determined to take the R rating down to a PG, and make it a kid-friendly franchise. It spelled the death of what made the first movie great.

Lydia Eickstaedt

I still haven’t watched the preview! Sorry, John– we got wrapped up in a rousing game of SPANC for some reason since our fourth D&D player broke his wrists recently and can’t join us for our usual gaming session– but I will try to do so tonight.

Seeing some other comments, I do think you might like the original more on rewatching it. I watched all three like I said before– the sequels were pretty awful! The original was still cheesy in that 80’s special effects way and very slow in the beginning, but it had a lot more class. Oddly!

I’m curious about Krull, too. After all- Liam Neeson!


Given the reality of who makes the ticket-buying decisions when couples go to films, the decision to make a version of The Hobbit that has at least modest appeal to women makes complete sense.

My question is why it makes sense to assume that throwing in a token female will somehow make The Hobbit more appealing to the millions of women who read and loved the book?

I don’t think one can safely assume that Brianna Loves Jenna would have sold better if it included a token male.


that locations in the link are in Almeria, in the southeast of Spain just where I live, they shot a lot of spaguetti westerns too and films like The wind and the lion
by the way I knew Isidoro Alles an aerial photographer amongs other things that took John Millius in his delta-wing for the aerial scenes of the film he said the delta-wing barely fly because of the heavy weight of John Millius… sadly Isidoro died some years ago after an accident doing what he loved, flying

John, the film in youtube is the bulgarian production Day of the rulers an epic film from the 80’s about the wars between Byzantium and the bulgars, the film is great, if you see the first five minutes of the video you will see the end of the traitor, shakesperian and howardian at the same time, by the way what Robin Hood are you talking about?


Hairy ballz of the Gawdz, this is going to Suck Ass!!!!

I mean, really, I saw the original movie in Grade School days, ducking into a theater avoiding some looking after me for some other mischief I was into that day, and maaannnnn…. What a powerful movie.

And it’s like the “Conspiracy Theories” of media control are 100% right.

#1 – A certain “Ethnic” group taking control to prevent another group of “Nasties” going after them but then not really caring about anything else and letting it slump and decay, just as long as they get to fire anyone who says they are bad and make one ww2 movie after another.

#2 – Big, giant corporate interests, no ties to ethnicity or nation, only profit matters. Take control of the media to avoid paying actors, writers, etc. any fair wage after a while, not giving any of them any control over their works. Making dumb, lame sh-t and since they control the markets making sure it’s a “Hit” since they’ll let NOTHING sell (or at least gain any real recognition) unless it’s pure curried TURD they want to shove down our throats and demand $ for it. Lobotomizing the news so it only reports their side of the story, that somehow there’s a “Human Rights” issue to illegal immigrants and an “International communication” issue to sending jobs overseas and a “Sexism” issue to just giving petty women who slept through college management jobs over men to degrade them.

#3 – Reptiles ala “David Icke”… Really, before you laugh, check this out: it’s FULL of warning symbology on “Reptilians” even before that “V” TV series.

They just HAD to ruin Conan. It was probably a miracle that somehow it slipped through… Some moneyman going “Oh, this Sword and Sorcery is in fashion? Here’s a few dozen million, just make some movie on this dumb sh-t…” but not counting how much raw, male, super energy is in those stories. And, whaddaya know, the film makes TONS of money and people LOVE it…they are talking about it, it’s a “Game changer”… “What? It did that much more than breaking even? We thought it’d flop so we could scream for corporate welfare from the government…”

So the “Producer” watches he film he paid to produce and it’s “The superman” on the screen and just watching him he screams and shivers and hides under the seat… Or it’s the “Common man” rising up to kill his slavers and he imagines them forming another “Union” just after decades of TV lies got them on the decline. Or, it’s the “Bad old days” when “Mighty Men of Renown” went to “Slay the serpent and fight the nephilim”…

And the guy that made the music died soon after, perhaps they murdered him for it, making such soul-stirring tunes, not cr-p, shlapple and plop like the “Music Industry” they were shoving on us then.

The first film was incredible.

The second film was more “Grade School”.

The “Third” film, Red Sonja was comedy suckage, and they had “him” (well Arnie, but meant to be Conan) second to a WOMAN…

The TV series, lame. The cartoon, formulaic repetitive junk, the only ‘cool’ thing was the ‘serpent men’, and IMO that was deliberate.

Now, #4 comes along and it’s a “Star Trek” de-trekking, oh we’ll just re-write #1 as if it never happened…

Really, I could almost cry with what this film seems to be like.

John R. Fultz

John O.: You make a good point about why Conan the Destroyer was so terrible–but let’s not forget two things: 1) It was Gerry Conway who took Roy Thomas’ outline and turned it into the teenage pablum that ended up as the film 2) The 1982 Conan the Barbarian film–the REAL one–was co-written by John Milius and OLIVER STONE! Stone may not be universally loved, but his genius has been widely acclaimed, and it was on display here.

Your comment about the second Conan movie not being less adult implies that you really don’t remember CotB very much at all. Consider this:

First movie: Beheading of child Conan’s mom while he watches; nude slave girls sacrificing themselves to the giant snake in the pit; a witch that tries to devour Conan while he’s screwing her; various decapitations, guttings, and tons of gore–all done with quality sfx; an ORGY SCENE set in Thulsa Doom’s palace where the writhing cultists are dining on human flesh boiled in great vats; tits…lots of tits; Conan crucified in a realistically bloody scene on the Tree of Woe; a cultist committing suicide at the merest whisper of Thulsa Doom; a blood-filled, skull-crushing final battle scene; Conan slices the head off of Thulsa Doom in the climax and HOLDS IT DRIPPING on display on the temple steps. Firmly Rated R all-around.

Now, the horrible second movie: A spoiled teenage princess who remains clad all throughout the story; minimal blood and certainly no decapitations or guts; no tits; comic relief in the form of the little thief character; Wilt Chamberlain (’nuff said); an obviously plastic monster; an obviously plastic evil demon-wizard; low-budget sfx when the wizard’s citadel sinks; a happy ending for all involved. Conan the Destroyer was a kid’s movie. Conan the Barbarian was Adult Fantasy as it was meant to be.

Oh, if you’re including IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE in your list of fantasy films, then we’re not on the same page at all, so I’ll drop that topic.

But Conan the Barbarian is a great movie.

I hope the remake is even half as good.

Jeff Stehman

the fantasy films in my top ten (led by IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE, by the way)

John, John, John, that’s very sad to hear. If only you had said Harvey

Lydia Eickstaedt

Haha, no, I meant “all three movies”, starting with the first and then including the sequels, of which there were only two. 🙂 I am a latecomer to many of the great and enjoyable movies of the 60’s-80’s due to my age, but I sure am trying to see all the ones that I might enjoy!

Someday I should tell you how I went on a mad, uncontrollable Clint Eastwood from-rise-to-directorial-debut-to-most-recent-film binge! It was pretty incredible. It only breaks my heart that Eastwood’s interest in fantasy tends to end at “there may be ghosts, too! But back to non-fantasy”.


I enjoyed the Milius CONAN, in particular the score and cinematography. The film gets a lot wrong, as mentioned before Kull’s villain visits, but it gets a lot right as well thematically.

Let us not forget that the first Conan tale was a rewrite of an earlier Kull tale anyway.

As for this film, I think it looks good so far, but I am wary. I think Momoa will do a good job as Conan and that his delivery on the Howard dialogue is spot on. There is no irony when Conan says these words, they are the embodiment of the Howardian modern Barbarian ethos. Conan believes in no afterlife or transcendent morality, he is fully primal.

Regardless of whether the film is good or not, I am certain that those working on it are trying to make a good film.

As for KRULL…you must see it! It plays like a D&D campaign from the 80s. C’mon!

Matthew David Surridge

John: in terms of serious adventure fantasy/sword-and-sorcery … you ever see the Michael Praed/Jason Connery Robin Hood TV series, Robin of Sherwood? Excellent stuff, I feel, and the pilot episode “Robin Hood and the Sorcerer” may be my favourite swords-and-magic film or TV show up to at least Jackson’s LOTR (which … I go back and forth on).

I’d also be really interested to see your top 10 fantasy movies list …

[…] this one from John O’Neill, editor of Black Gate Magazine: “The trailer is quite brief (one minute), and doesn’t show much beyond a lot of smoke, a […]

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x