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If you partake in celebrating Christmas, then chances are you have a favorite Christmas movie. Some of you may like classics like Miracle on 34th Street, some of you may enjoy more modern fare like Elf. Well, even Elizabeth II, the Queen of England, has a movie she likes to watch every Christmastime, but it’s not something one would consider particularly festive. It’s the 1980 action cheese fest Flash Gordon.
This revelation comes actor Brian Blessed, who played the winged Prince Vultan in Flash Gordon. While speaking about the movie celebrating its 40th anniversary, Blessed noted how a lot of people come up to him asking that he say his character’s iconic catchphrase, “Gordon’s alive?” This includes the Queen of England, who apparently watches Flash Gordon with her grandchildren every Christmas. Here’s the request Her Royal Highness once made to Blessed when they met, as he informed Yahoo Movies:
You know, we watch Flash Gordon all the time, me and the grandchildren. And if you don’t mind, I’ve got the grandchildren here, would you mind saying ‘Gordon’s alive’?
I have to say, while I’ve never paired Christmas and Flash Gordon in the same thought until now, considering how many times I’ve cycled through the traditional Christmas movies from my youthful days, I’m tempted to follow in the Queen’s footsteps and spice things by playing it. At the very least, the movie is packed with wild colors, and that could be enough to get one in the festive spirit.
Released on December 5, 1980, and based on the long-running, same-named comic strip that began back in 1934, Flash Gordon also starred Sam Jones, Max von Sydow, Melody Anderson, Topol, Ornella Muti, Timothy Dalton and Peter Wyngarde, among others. While the movie didn’t impress commercially, it was met with a solid amount of positive critical reception and has gained a cult following.
While that Flash Gordon sequel teased at the end of the first movie never came to be, there have been efforts in recent years to re-explore the property in a cinematic setting. Originally the plan was to deliver a live-action Flash Gordon reboot, but in June 2019, it was reported that Taika Waititi came aboard to help work on an animated Flash Gordon movie. However, because Waititi is busy in the years ahead with Thor: Love and Thunder and a Star Wars movie, it’s unclear if this project is still happening or if a different filmmaker will take over on it.
Of course, just because the Queen of England evidently likes watching Flash Gordon with the family at Christmas doesn’t necessarily mean it’s her favorite movie of all time. It’s previously been reported that such an honor belonged to 1989’s Shirley Valentine, a romantic comedy-drama following a middle-aged woman who rekindles childhood dreams and goes on a journey of self-discovery. Still, even if Flash Gordon isn’t at the top of the list, I doubt I’m alone getting a kick out of her seated to watch it with her family, the Queen soundtrack blasting from their sound system.
As for if/when the Flash Gordon property will return to the big screen, keep checking back with CinemaBlend for more updates, and look through our 2020 release schedule to learn what movies are supposed to come out later this year.