Yes, hide your Cerberus and lock up your minotaur, because it's true: according to The Los Angeles Times, Ratner is currently in discussions with Avi Lerner about the possibility to helming a new Hecules feature film for Millenium/Nu Image. Lerner, of course, is the action producer that brought the world 'Rambo' and 'The Expendables,' which would seem to make him the perfect partner for the bombastic Ratner, who is best known for the 'Rush Hour' series and 'X-Men: The Last Stand.' Move over, 'Prince of Persia,' and step aside, 'Clash of the Titans,' because the original sword-and-sandal hero is about to make his big screen return. And who better to chronicle the adventures of the legendary Hercules than Hollywood's own version of Homer, Brett Ratner?
Yes, hide your Cerberus and lock up your minotaur, because it's true: According to The Los Angeles Times, Ratner is currently in discussions with Avi Lerner about the possibility to helming a new Hecules feature film for Millenium/Nu Image. Lerner, of course, is the action producer that brought the world 'Rambo' and 'The Expendables,' which would seem to make him the perfect partner for the bombastic Ratner, who is best known for the 'Rush Hour' series and 'X-Men: The Last Stand.'
Of course, fans of Hercules shouldn't get too excited just yet; Ratner and Lerner have had serious talks before -- regarding the possibility of Ratner directing a Conan reboot -- and those efforts didn't pan out. Still, it's clear that the two want to work together on something, and given the recent worldwide success of period actioners like 'Clash of the Titans' and 'Prince of Persia,' a new version of Hercules could be just the thing to bring them together.
Of course, new versions of the Hercules myth have been a staple of the entertainment industry for three thousand years, so coming up with a fresh take may be a bit difficult considering artists and writers have been re-imagining him in everything from plays to frescoes to video and role playing games. Still, it also gives Ratner plenty of options to choose from, so in order to give him a little inspiration, here's a brief look at some of our favorite recent versions of the legendary hero:
• 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys' Probably the best known of the recent adaptations, this cult favorite TV show, which ran for six seasons beginning in 1995, featured Fabio-lookalike Kevin Sorbo in the title role, which he originated in an episode of 'Xena: Warrior Princess.'
• 'Hercules' Perhaps influenced by the popularity of 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys,' in 1997 the Walt Disney Company released a feature-length animated movie simply titles 'Hercules.' While the movie wasn't exactly a domestic blockbuster -- it opened second behind 'Face/Off' and failed to crack $100 million -- it fared better overseas and ended up with a respectable $252 million take.
• 'God of War III' Okay, so Hercules is kind of a total jerk in this video game from Sony, but then again, so is everyone in the 'God of War' franchise, up to and including lead character Kratos. In fact, we have to admit that even as we were killing Hercules (who appears as a sub-boss), we were kind of rooting for him, thanks in no small part to the fact that the clever designers had tapped a very special voice actor to provide the dialogue: Kevin Sorbo himself.
• 'The Incredible Hercules' -- Hercules has had a long and varied history in the world of comic books, but the best known version of the hero belongs to Marvel Comics. We doubt we'll be seeing Hercules in the upcoming 'Avengers' movie, though, which is a real shame; the most recent iteration of the character, 'The Incredible Hercules' by writers Greg Pak and Fred van Lente and artists like Khoi Pham and Ryan Stegman, provided as many laughs as fight scenes and was a comic shop highlight until it came to an end earlier this year.
• 'Hercules in New York' The standard by which all others are judged. Okay, maybe not, but we still have a soft spot in our hearts for the 1970 epic that introduced the world to a certain future governor by the name of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Here's a look at just one awesome clip from this instant classic, featuring Hercules fighting a grizzly bear in Central Park:
Arnold Beats Up Bear in Hercules in New York - Watch more Funny Videos