Last month, Dungeons & Dragons became the latest major Hollywood production to be impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The film was already over a year away, but Paramount still chose to delay it to 2022. However, this will give writers and directors Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley more time to fine-tune the story. While speaking with The Hollywood Reporter, Goldstein and Daley updated fans on how their big screen version of the beloved tabletop game is coming along. They also explained how they’ve been using their time in isolation to continue working on the movie.
Before the shutdown, Goldstein and Daley were starting work on their second draft of their D&D script. They were also planning to fly out to the U.K. to scout locations. But unfortunately, the ensuing stay-at-home orders made that impossible.
“Once we got our scout dates, I think the next day they had basically shut down all travel to and from Europe,” said Daley. “It obviously put everything in that sense on hold. That said, the studio and eOne and everyone over there remain cautiously optimistic about getting the ball rolling again as soon as possible, obviously in the safest possible way. We have turned in our second draft of the movie and are doing prep with storyboarding and visualizing sequences. That’s stuff we can do from our homes as well.”
Daley confessed that he and Goldstein “usually write over Skype anyway,” so their writing process hasn’t changed much. In the meantime, they continue to touch base with studio executives about their progress. They’re also figuring out how they can safely handle scenes that involve a lot of performers.
“That whole world is going to change dramatically, I feel,” added Daley. “We have these scenes with big crowds that we are now rethinking and deciding if it’s worth preserving or if we should try to pivot and find another way into the scenes we were imagining.”
Goldstein and Daley are primarily known for their work on comedies like Horrible Bosses and Game Night. However, D&D isn’t their first brush with blockbuster filmmaking. They helped craft the script for Spider-Man: Homecoming. They were also previously attached to write and direct The Flash for Warner Bros. before departing the movie last year. And even though they didn’t stick with the project, they said their time on the film to be a valuable learning experience.
“The challenge is to approach it as you would a much smaller movie,” said Goldstein. “And not get caught up in the fact that you have $100 million-plus to spend and start thinking about the biggest set pieces you can construct. Rather, focus on the stuff that makes it special and makes an audience invest — and that’s the characters. That’s in the stuff you don’t need a lot of money to do right. That’s how we approached The Flash and that’s how we’re approaching D&D.”
Dungeons & Dragons will hit theaters on May 27, 2022.
What do you think about Goldstein and Daley’s remarks? Let us know in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: Dungeons & Dragons: Forgotten Realms – The Legend of Drzzt Omnibus Volume 1
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