Can you guys imagine just how enormously popular something like Chuck Russell’s 2002 quasi-prequel The Scorpion King would have been if they’d have just waited 10 years to release it? Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has arguably never been hotter with audiences, in terms of both box office appeal and his physical physique. Though I’d rather not think about that film being directed by Brett Ratner, who's currently shepherding The Rock through his next would-be blockbuster.
Ratner’s upcoming Hercules: The Thracian Wars is certain to bring in myriad moviegoers based on Johnson’s presence alone, not to mention the people who will be going to see the rest of the talented cast and fans of the graphic novel source material. Admittedly, we would probably report on co-star Rufus Sewell tweeting out a picture from the film’s set, but if it’s a Hercules movie you’re getting photo teasers for, you probably want to see as much of Hercules as possible until the big reveal. And Johnson has been keen to take to his Twitter account to give fans the vaguest of sneak peeks into how he’ll look in the film.
But unlike the first look, taken a day after the film went into production, this one is actually on the film’s set with full costumes. Of course, we still only see Johnson from the back, but we get a good look at his costume, which includes a girdle belt and some nifty looking boots. Is that a weapon on his back, or is he just unhappy to see me?
As far as I can tell – the saturated contrast makes things blurry in the light - it’s co-star Joe Anderson as Phineus sitting across the table from Hercules, having gone bald (perhaps) and donning a beard (perhaps) for the role. Is this a dinner table in someone’s hut? It isn’t obvious. Johnson posted the caption “Our Hercules set created by award winning designer Jean-Vincent Puzos w/great detail. I sit in awe.” Puzos was the Oscar-nominated production designer for Michael Haneke’s Amour, though he didn’t take the trophy home.
One of the last photos Johnson tweeted, seen below, showcased his scarred sun-and-dirt-burnt shoulder, with the caption: “Asked how I got my shoulder slice scars: From a satisfied woman w/long ass nails;)” Ever the comedian.
He also posted a pretty sweet shot of two of the film’s weapons, saying, “We have the best film designers in the world. Respects the mythology w/ great detail.” They do look pretty snazzy. Not at all what I’d want to face an enemy with present day or anything…
This version of the Hercules mythos happens after all the legendary stories, and places the long-suffering god in the company of six trusted friends, hellbent on fighting to the death whoever comes in their way, and follows their path to become the most ruthless army the world has ever known.
The film, which also co-stars Ian McShane, John Hurt and Joseph Fiennes, is gearing up for a big summer release, hitting theaters on July 2014. But sometime before that, we're bound to get a full-frontal view of the character right? (Maybe not that full-frontal though.)