Exclusive: Producer Basil Iwanyk on CLASH OF THE TITANS 2, the Remake of A STAR IS BORN, and THE EXPENDABLES 2

by     Posted 3 years, 343 days ago

With director Ben Affleck’s The Town premiering at the Toronto Film Festival, I got to sit down with the producer Basil Iwanyk to talk about making The Town and his other projects like Clash of the Titans 2, the remake of A Star is Born, The Seventh Son (with director Sergey Bodrov), and he even gave me an update on The Expendables 2 because he just spoke with Avi Lerner.

The big news about A Star is Born is he thinks in the next 6 to 8 weeks the film might be coming together and they’re aiming to shoot in the first 4 or 5 months of next year.  He also tells me that he’s incredibly happy with the script for Clash of the Titans 2 and that it takes place 5 or 6 years after the first film and it’ll be more realistic – including the depiction of the monsters.  He also reveals Gemma Arterton will be back.

Finally, for people who thought the first Clash of the Titans had some problems…Iwanyk is extremely candid about his thoughts on the first film and why it didn’t completely work.  He also reveals why we’ll never see the full set of deleted scenes.  So much more after the jump:

Since the interview is over ten minutes, I’ve time indexed the entire thing so you can watch the parts that interest you.  The beginning is about the first and second Clash of the Titans and around time index 7:55 it jumps into his other projects.

Look for more with Basil Iwanyk in the next day or so (it will cover The Town):

Producer Basil Iwanyk

  • What happened on Clash of the Titans?  What I saw on set wasn’t the version I expected in theaters. Talks about how the critics didn’t love the film and how the 3D was criticized
  • 2:55 – I ask about the role of the Gods in the movie (admits they never had it figured out in the script stage)
  • 3:05 – Are all the deleted scenes lost forever or will we eventually see them
  • 4:00 – How is the script coming along on Clash 2 and is Gemma Arterton in the movie (she is).  Also talks about how the script is coming along on the new one
  • 6:50 – Confirms they are filming again in London and in some of the same places
  • 7:00 – What is the tone of the sequel and how does it compare to the first?  Says it will be based more in reality and more real.  Says the first one was comic booky while the second one will feel more real – including the depiction of the monsters.
  • 7:45 – Says 5 or 6 years will have passed from the first film
  • 7:55 – What else is coming up for him? Talks about A Star is Born and how in the next 6 to 8 weeks a version might be coming together.  Says it would start shooting in the first 4 or 5 months of 2011.  Also talks about a script that used to be called The Spooks Apprentice and now it’s called The Seventh Son with director Sergey Bodrov attached.  They are about to present artwork to the studio and he hopes it will go next year
  • 10:55 – Expendables 2 talk


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  • Aromcath

    Perhaps its way too early to call this out right about now. But the idea of founding Clash in a more realism base just seems to be the wrong direction. Admittedly this is a more personal view but Greek mythology has always been best framed in that over the top emotional roller coaster mixed in the absurdity and bombastic nature of the gods. So the idea of toning the tales in this sense of realism doesn’t seem like it will work, at least how this guy expects the thing to work.

  • jony

    everything that gets a more reality feel, IMO, improves. Just look at the track record of films that have done that. Batman Begins, Dark Knight, Wathmen (lost the squid, went with nuclear bomb), Harry Potter (the later sequals), Superman (getting the Nolan treatment),300, etc.

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  • http://twitter.com/cablebfg Bill Graham

    I agree with your point, but why would you mention a film NO ONE has seen: Superman. That hasn’t even been created! I like the idea of where this is headed as long as it stays on that path. Should be interesting to see what they come up with because he sounds like he learned some lessons and is genuinely excited about what they have ALREADY.

  • Aromcath

    I would contest that point, at least with the argument that grounding a story in realism only serves specific materials. It’s the nature of the story that should dictate the level of realism. I would further argue that there are IP’s that get slapped across the face with ha sledgehammer made of dick because they choose to take the realistic approach when it’s not necessary. It’s ultimately an aesthetic choice that CAN pay off for some IP’s.

    From here on I’m going to rip off a critic by the title MovieBob, mostly because anything I personal construct would already just be a rip and spin off this idea so I figure I might as well point out the source and just bloodily rip him off anyway, with the proper credit of course. More specifically an article by him for the Escapist Magazine. I’ll give out the link as well as copy and paste the specific excerpt that I find to be at the heart of my argument.


    If there’s one thing I wish I never had to read again, it’s another mopey lament for the passing of realism from the movies. You hear it all the time now, the idea that the subject matter and the very style of moviemaking is tumbling down some long slippery slope away from some mythic peak era when a commitment to gritty realism reigned supreme.

    The peak era in question is, for the most part, also known as “The 70s,” the vaunted era in American movie history when the collapse of the studio system briefly allowed a ragtag generation of seasoned “B” filmmakers and idealistic film students to take over the asylum.

    The ur-text of “70s Film Deification” is Peter Biskind’s omnipresent, essential (once you get past it’s obvious biases) book Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, which laid down the basic fall-from-grace narrative from which the modern realism complaint now descends: The Holy 70s were destroyed by Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, filmmakers for whom the movie world held greater fascination than socio-political relevance and fantasy appeared to trump reality. To be fair, Biskind’s sprawling story ultimately drops the lions share of the blame on the more relevant members of the so-called Movie Brats being undone by fate and their own self-indulgence, but the broad notion of Jaws and Star Wars as the apocalyptic events that brought down the gritty, grownup realism of the 70s has endured.

    Some of this, of course, is a generational thing: I was born in 1981, making the Jaws, Star Wars and Raiders the beginning of the movie world I’d grow up in rather than the end of whatever had come before. I’m also, of course, an unrepentant geek. Either way, this combination of factors tends to place me somewhat outside the broader spectrum of film writers (though it’s become a rather crowded outside, as of late) in as much as I don’t have any real issue with movies trending toward the unrealistic. In fact, it’s a prospect I wholeheartedly endorse.

    Today, this fetishism for “the real” most annoyingly survives in the form of arbitrary walls separating one genre from another – the notion that the various un-realism’s must at least be kept separate from one another: James Bond can do some improbable action stunts, but the cyborg henchmen and scifi weaponry of 007′s past is now verboten. Dr. Doom menaces The Fantastic Four as a corporate executive rather than as castle-dwelling ruler of Transylvaniaesque fictional country, while planet-devouring Galactus had to be changed from a godlike giant into, er… the weather. In comics, The X-Men fought aliens, wizards and dinosaurs. In the movies? Mutants and only mutants – so Juggernaut loses his nifty “muscle powers from magical ruby” origin and is instead just some guy with the mutant power to reference to moronic internet memes. Even Star Wars wasn’t immune – Lucas stripped the spiritualism and magic from The Force and replaced it with a scientific explanation about Midichlorians.

    Anyway, What I mean to say out of all of this is Clash of the Titans would in no way really be brought in a better light for trying to bring in a sense of realism. Again I contest that the strength of Greek Mythology lies in the inane characters of the Greek gods and their hyper emotional dealings with humanity and the same can be said on the human side as well. I argue, would the Odyssey be greatly improved by turning away from the mystic nature of the story? Would the labors of Hercules be more compelling if he were just a man fighting animals? That being said what aspects of the story would be improved by turning down the realism path?

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  • Deanbriss

    Aromcath nobodies going to read all of that? RIDICUlOUS try keeping it to a minimum. GEEEEZZZZ!!!!

    • Tim

      Well I for one read the whole thing, Deanbriss — it was the most interesting comment on the thread and more worthwhile than the assortment of shorter ones. So, poo on you Deanbriss.

  • Guest

    That’s a rather large generalization. Everything? So there are no exceptions to your rule?
    Realism fits some movies better than others, such as the recent Batman movies, but it made Clash more absurd than it would have been if they simply went for fun, light and a tad goofy. They took themselves far too seriously in this remake.
    It’s also not simply going for less seriousness, but HOW they do it, the balance they achieve that’s most important.

  • TheWatcher

    I thought Clash was pretty entertaining. Granted, I got the BD off a torrent and watched it at home in 2D, so I didn’t have that faint-copper aftertaste in my mouth reminding me of the 15 bucks I spent on a ticket, but watching it on my TV with a few beers was a solid way to spend a couple of hours.

    I wouldn’t mind watching the sequel.

    Expendables, however, I didn’t much care for.

  • Sir_ffej

    The movie was entertaining and worked great on blue ray. 3D was just unnecessary and seemed to just play off of the success of Avatar to make a few extra bucks (okay, a lot of extra bucks). The character development is probably the worst I have seen in a movie in a long time. I just didn’t care about 90% of the characters. They would say, “Let’s go to Medusa” and then there they were. No journey? The film probably would have been better at 3 hours long. I will watch the sequel and hope for the best. Loved the cast and the monsters.

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