Hollywood! Adapt This: THE AMORY WARS

     August 25, 2013


Breaking news: Comic books are hot priorities for movie adaptations these days.  Marvel obviously heads the pack with DC in hot pursuit, thanks in part to the success of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy and the recent casting of Ben Affleck as the new Batman/Bruce Wayne.  Because of their success, smaller comics publishers are also enjoying an uptick in exposure and an interest in seeing their material brought to the big screen.  The adaptations of these relatively obscure stories will continue to push the boundaries of both filmmaking techniques and audiences’ imaginations.  In an effort to bring more attention to one such series of comic book stories (which surprisingly has an adaptation already in early development), today we’ll be visiting Coheed and Cambria frontman Claudio Sanchez’s long-running creation.  Hit the jump for more.  Hollywood!  Adapt this: The Amory Wars.

the-amory-warsWhat It’s About:

An epic sci-fi tetralogy, The Amory Wars is set in Heaven’s Fence, a collection of 78 planets held in place by the Keywork (interconnecting beams of energy).  The story at first follows protagonists Coheed and Cambria Kilgannon in their struggle against the Supreme Tri-Mage, Wilhelm Ryan (later referred to as the Archmage).  Ryan, along with his second-in-command, Mayo Deftinwolf, orchestrates a plot to murder the Kilgannon children in order to use the dormant Monstar virus hidden within Coheed to destroy the Keywork.  The second half of the story focuses on the heroic journey of their surviving son, the messianic Claudio Kilgannon.  After a number of trials, Claudio assumes the mantle of The Crowing, the foretold savior of Heaven’s Fence.  Ultimately, he will face the Archmage, absolute ruler of Heaven’s Fence and the architect behind the death of Claudio’s family.

There is so, so, so much more to The Amory Wars, including colorful side character such as Al, the sexually-frustrated and psychopathic sniper; Ambellina, a dragonfly-like creature known as a Prise who guides Claudio along his journey; and Ten Speed of God’s Blood & Burial, a 10-speed bicycle that represents the Writer’s will.  It’s got more political interweaving and family drama than Star Wars and Dune combined, but it certainly doesn’t lack for action as it includes massive space battles, planetary invasions and galactic warfare. [Correction: "Ambelina is more of an Angel-like creature known as a Prise. The Syringa is the dragonfly creature that carries half of the Monstar virus that activates Coheed." Thanks for the clarification!]

How Could / Why Should It Be Adapted?

In today’s comic book culture, it’s easy for new and original material to get lost in the sea of similar stories all attempting to make a dent in the industry and land that next big franchise deal.  So how does one make themselves stand out?  How about creating an epic sci-fi story that is brought to life not only in the pages of comics but also realized in a series of best-selling concept albums?  Yeah, that’ll do it.

coheed-and-cambria-the-amory-warsThe majority of fans have probably been introduced to The Amory Wars without even knowing it, by hearing one single or another from Coheed and Cambria.  What could easily be brushed off as a catchy pop-rock song actually leads into an incredibly dense and complicated mythology that’s been brewing in comic book form since at least 2005, and in Sanchez’s music as early as 1995.  It’s an amazing world to delve into and, at times, overwhelming, since it’s difficult to piece together a linear story from the comics (some of which are out of print or incredibly difficult/expensive to get ahold of) or even the albums (which had been released out of order and are subject to wide-ranging interpretation).  However, the rare combination of musical expression with a mature and original storyline that’s already been visualized in comic form makes The Amory Wars tailor-made for a big screen adaptation.

The Final Word:

While Mark Wahlberg and Leverage have announced a production partnership with Sanchez and Evil Ink comics to bring the property to the big screen, little more has been heard on the development since then.  The story is far too big to be told in one simple feature, so a franchise is absolutely necessary to do justice to the story.  Personally, I think it could work as a live-action feature franchise, but I’d love to see some of the side-stories or interstitials told in an animated format, which would free up the creative expression of the stories and likely be a more efficient use of the budget.  However it gets done, The Amory Wars is too rich a story to be left on the shelves.  Even though Sanchez is involved with the picture, it remains to be seen just how true to the original story the adaptation would be.  I would much rather patiently await a version that hits closer to Sanchez’s vision than see a rushed release of a studio production that doesn’t do The Amory Wars justice, especially as an introduction to audiences who are unfamiliar with the property.  That being said, fans (myself included) will likely be waiting a long, long time to see anything at all; I hope I’m wrong!

Be sure to tune in next weekend for the next installment of Hollywood! Adapt This!  Feel free to leave us your thoughts and suggestions in the comments!


  • Strong Enough

    Hollywood! Adapt This: my nuts

  • The Great and Powerful Turtle

    Hollywood doesn’t understand how to make this kind of film,even Star Wars great as it was didn’t get it totally right in the epic space battle scenes,only the Japanese anime makers seem to get right…stuff like Heroic Age,Yukikaze,Banner Of The Stars and Crest Of The Stars..i have no confidence that Hollywood would adapt this well at all

    • Lovecraftlives

      Yes, you are right. How about some Gundam or Macross?

  • Marcus

    H-H-Hollywood! A-A-Adapt M-M-Max Headroom…

  • Jose Rubiani

    Oh….my god….is this a dream? My keywork tattoo is vibrating…

  • MegaMaid

    Adapt This: Star Fox

  • Patrick Campbell

    I always wanted to see this on screen. Coheed has been my favorite band for over a decade, and their comic adaptation of their music is incredible. But I almost think it would make a better miniseries on something like HBO than an actual movie, because it’s just so dense and layered. Not to mention it’s dark as hell, and if it was made as a film, it would probably be hindered by a PG-13 rating, and that’s not fitting for this at all. Either way, I want to see the epic adventures of Coheed, Cambria, and Claudio Kilgannon eventually in a live action format.

  • Josh Barnett

    Congratulations, you have officially won the internet. One among the fence!

  • Scavenger Monk

    Man your own jackhammer. Man your battle stations. We’ll have you home pretty soon.

  • Nathan

    HBO! Adapt This: Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

  • Lovecraftlives

    Dude, I am so sick of your Hollywood Adapt this. Almost everything you pick is shit. You never pick anything interesting. Here are a few things to adapt that blow your shit out of the water: Crisis on Infinite Earths (Which would be a great way to introduce people to the DC universe) and Elric of Melnibone. Those two source materials would make great films, though I think Crisis might be better adapted as TV series.

  • Eric Johnson

    Sounds Lame

  • Littertray

    I was going back thru some old anime and T.V dvds I have and came accross an old program that would make a good fim/series of films. Anyone else remember Space: Above and Beyond? I loved that show and with things like Enders Game coming out, it would be a perfect time for it.

  • Steven Ray Morris


  • Steven Ray Morris


  • Blaze James

    The Amory Wars fans, please focus on the big picture. The film needs to be made. All the details will be correct when it is. No need to pick apart an article from a supporter.

    • Dave Trumbore

      All good! I appreciate the passion from the fans and I, admittedly, don’t know as many details of the story as I’d like to, so I welcome the knowledge! (Also, thanks to the fans for being civil AND enthusiastic!)

    • // steph

      Oh of course! A dream in the making.

  • Blaze James

    The Amory Wars fans, please focus on the big picture. The film needs to be made. All the details will be correct when it is. No need to pick apart an article from a supporter.

  • Ryan Rappaport

    Do itttttttt

  • Cierra Parish

    I hope Hollywood doesn’t fuck up this amazing piece of art, but I’d like to see it on screen also.

  • Cierra Parish

    I hope Hollywood doesn’t fuck up this amazing piece of art, but I’d like to see it on screen also.

  • Mitcherrrrr

    Do it

  • Charlaine Reyes

    You’ll not put them here if they don’t deserve an adaptation. So, adapt! :)

  • James Stanley

    The Amory Wars definitely needs to be on the screen, big or small.

  • Christopher Barker

    I’d LOVE to see this done right…

  • T. Dalton

    Someone please make this film series come true. The Amory Wars is the perfect sci-fi thriller.

  • Christine Kelly

    Yes Please !!!

  • Devin Garabedian

    Not only do the Amory Wars need to be adapted, Hollywood would be absolute fools not to turn their latest double-album, The Afterman, into the first feature. It’s the best, cleanest and most accessible story in the entire canon.

  • Adam

    I would like to see this made into a film, but I’m afraid it wont be done well at all. Also I think if Wahlberg is making this into a feature it may only ruin the hopes of a franchise.

  • Jesse Sutton


  • Caleb

    This would easily outdo Star Wars as a franchise, if it was produced correctly and to the same degree of detail as the comic books were written… I’m eagerly awaiting this.

  • Chunk Zizzle

    Samuel L Jackson for Mayo Deftinwolf!!!

    If they are going to do this then Claudio should be the director or have the final say in how this story is portrayed.

  • Mat

    It would be truly awesome!
    Please adopt this!

  • Ryan Bennett

    Please for the love of God make this into a reality

  • Emily Martin

    Definitely needs to happen! I don’t want to be patient, but I definitely will if it means that a film adaptation will do the Amory Wars saga justice. Let’s go, Wahlberg!

  • Garett Press

    I would do a lot of terrible things to see this adapted for the big screen. Been following the series & the band since day 1!

  • TropicDave173

    I’d put the Afterman in a sequence in the opening credits in the first movie (YOTBR). It’s part of the story but too distant to really tie in with the first five albums. Give it a nod then jump to the Black Rainbow and the rest of the story.

  • Dylan Webb

    Please,I think this would be AMAZING, I support this 100%

  • Brad B

    I believe “The Afterman” has the most potential as a major motion
    picture IMO. The story is a lot easier to follow than the Amory Wars and
    would be more “family-friendly” overall. They could make two films
    (Ascension and Decension), with a third if those two do well (Sirius
    goes back to the Keywork to help Meri, a la the implication of “Two is
    My Favorite One”)

    The Amory Wars tetralogy would do the best as a
    cable tv series (I believe someone else already mentioned HBO or AMC as
    potential fits). Much like Breaking Bad, it could be 5 seasons, one for
    each album. I’m on the fence (no pun intended) as to whether it should
    be animated or not. I lean towards animated, but tv special effects have
    improved so drastically over the past 10 years that live action is also
    a possibility.

    That’s my two cents.

  • // steph

    I don’t care HOW it’s done at this point…it just has to BE done. Seeing it happen before my eyes instead of imaging what could possibly be happening, because the comics only show so much.

  • Ross

    As long as Claudio has a role in it i would deffinately watch

  • Dear Ambellina


  • One Among the Fence

    Live action sets this up for failure — this needs to be outsourced to an anime studio, and maybe, MAYBE dubbed with a few celebrity voices. It must be orders of magnitude cheaper to produce, and the artwork designs can carry over to crisp, sweet HD.

  • Patti

    I could LOVE to live the adaptation of the Amory Wars Saga! The Big Screen then immerse into the DVD/BlueRAY Combo packs <3

  • Pat

    See, I’m conflicted here. This could go one of two ways:
    [disclaimer: I LOVE both Coheed and Cambria and the Amory Wars!]

    Possibility A: they’ll totally flop because, while awesome, the Amory Wars is a minefield of ill-defined characters, pliable back stories, unstable and shaky imagined worlds, shoddily-paved plot holes, and preposterous dialogue awkwardly tooled to line up with song lyrics written years in advance. Coheed fans put up with it because they either love the music so much that they don’t care [as I do] or because they would not recognize good (or bad) prose if they were repeatedly beaten with it. Nothing the best screenwriters could do will make these stories into a film enjoyable to an objective audience.

    Possibility B: In the hands of a skilled screenwriter, Claudio’s mess could be retooled to actually make a coherent story with good dialogue and a logical plot! As Claudio is an ideas man and a writer of verse, he lacks the experience and skills to write good prose. The end product of him surrendering a healthy amount of creative control to someone who can actually write fiction on a professional level could re-package his ideas in an artistically sound final work.

    Either way, I’m still gonna go see this train wreck if it ever gets to theaters.

  • Eze_stryker

    Every movie made until this one is really just going to be a slight disappointment. I’ll come out of a theater saying, “Yeah, but it wasn’t the Amory Wars. That’s still on the horizon.”

  • Joanne Curry

    Does anyone remember the fan created star wars movie? Maybe some of us out there could create something similar… why wait for hollywood!

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