Why Past D&D Movies Failed According To Honor Among Thieves Directors


Directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein address why they think past Dungeons & Dragons movies failed (and why Honor Among Thieves won’t).

Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein reveal why they think past adaptations of the game have failed. Based on the table-top role-playing game, Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves is preceded by three largely unsuccessful adaptations. The 2000 film starring Jeremy Irons was a major flop critically and commercially, and the two direct-to-DVD follow-ups would also prove exceedingly underwhelming.


As the Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves release date approaches, Daley and Goldstein sat down for an exhaustive interview with Variety about their upcoming stab at adapting the game. Addressing how previous movies got it wrong, the directors explain that it’s ultimately all about finding the right tone, something that they evidently hope they’ve achieved with their new film. Check out Daley and Goldstein’s comments below:

Daley: Sometimes people take it too seriously and want to embrace the more dramatic elements of it. To us, that’s ridiculous, because you’ve got literally brains with four legs — you know, creatures that were so obviously written with a wink. On the flip side, if you try to get too goofy with it, you’re also doing it a disservice.

Goldstein: What we learned doing “Spider Man: Homecoming” was that while you have to have a certain reverence for and love of the source material, you can’t let the weight of that thing hinder your creativity.

Related: Dungeons & Dragons’ Movie Has To Include Something Truly Improbable

Honor Among Thieves’ Tone Will Be Key To Its Success

Dungeons and Dragons Honor Among Thieves movie

As with most fantasy or science fiction adaptations, Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves has the difficult task of staying true to its source material while also opening the story up to wider audiences. If the film leans too heavily into franchise lore or in-jokes that only Dungeons & Dragons players will understand, it risks losing more general audiences that will be crucial to achieving box office success. On the other hand, if the film doesn’t lean hard enough into the elements of the game that players know and love, it could lose out on its core fanbase.

Tone will play a large part in this, and straying too far into self-seriousness or, conversely, into parody, will likely result in a film that feels confused or at odds with its source material. Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves‘ trailers have already teased that the film is leaning heavily into the “fun” aspect of the game, offering up laugh-out-loud physical comedy and dialogue, which stems largely from its impressive cast, including the likes of Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, Hugh Grant, Regé-Jean Page, and Sophia Lillis.

Of course, in addition to the laughs and light-hearted atmosphere, Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves will also have to tell a compelling story with real stakes and real emotions. While impressive visuals and creative fight scenes will certainly go a long way to helping the adaptation succeed, it still needs heart and meaningful character journeys. Thankfully, audiences don’t have much longer to wait to find out if Daley and Goldstein succeeded, with Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves set to release later this month.

More: Honor Among Thieves Can Flip Character Deaths Using A Great In-Joke

Source: Variety

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    Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves


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