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Honor Among Thieves Directors on Dragons & Easter Eggs

Jan 7, 2023


Creators John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein’s upcoming fantasy, Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, looks epic from the first trailer alone. Already, we’ve glimpsed a few mighty creatures, some menacing foes, and the misfit band of heroes played by an ensemble cast of stars. At this year’s CCXP in Brazil, Collider’s Editor-in-Chief, Steve Weintraub, got to sit down with the writer-directors and producer Jeremy Latcham, who shared a bit about the making of the film.

Honor Among Thieves follows a ragtag team of cutpurses made up of different races and classes from the classic tabletop game, Dungeons & Dragons. The unexpected heroes are led by Chris Pine’s Edgin, and includes Holga the Barbarian (Michelle Rodriguez), Doric the Druid (Sophia Lillis), Xenk the Palladin (Regé-Jean Page), and Justice Smith’s Simon the Sorcerer. Together, they must embark on a journey to retrieve an ancient artifact from the likes of those who would use its power for massive destruction. Unfortunately, they were the ones who pilfered it for these villains in the first place.
COLLIDER VIDEO OF THE DAY
During their interview, Daley, Goldstein, and Latcham talk about working with Dungeons & Dragons’ game publisher, Wizards of the Coast, to nail the authenticity of the game’s lore and the dragons featured within the D&D world. They also discuss where they are in the editing process (fingers crossed for a new trailer soon), working on the movie’s VFX, basing their red dragon on a real D&D character, and filling Honor Among Thieves with plenty of Easter eggs for fans. For all of this and more, check out the video in the player above, or you can read the full transcript below.

Image via Paramount

COLLIDER: The movie’s coming out soon. When do you actually finish? When are you getting your final VFX shots, or will it be the day before?

JONATHAN GOLDSTEIN: We will finish the movie the day before it releases.

JOHN FRANCIS DALEY: That’s right.

GOLDSTEIN: It’s that kind of movie. We’re constantly tweaking, getting those last visual effects shots in, and honing music and all that stuff, but we’re almost done.

DALEY: Yeah, that was a joke answer.

GOLDSTEIN: I was joking.

DALEY: It’s going to be, maybe–

JEREMY LATCHAM: Hopefully before the end of the year.

DALEY: Yeah, couple of weeks from now.

LATCHAM: We’re right there. We’re really close.

The thing that people don’t realize is, when you finally get the final VFX shots, you can cut a trailer unlike the others. Because you have the shots.

LATCHAM: Yeah.

DALEY: That’s right.

It’s a completely different beast.

DALEY: It totally is. And we’ve been real sticklers about the look of this thing and trying to get it to a place that we’re all really happy with. And fortunately, the studio and the VFX vendors have been incredibly supportive in that case.

One of the things about dragons usually depicted in movies and television is, you have two feet, and it’s basically not what you guys are doing. You’re doing what’s really D&D, which is four legs.

DALEY: Yes.

Can you talk about how you decided on the design of the dragons, and being a little more accurate to what people who play D&D know?

GOLDSTEIN: Yeah. Well, we start with the lore. We start with what’s in D&D. We have very specific descriptions and specifications of what each dragon is, and [there are] so many of them. And we have a red dragon in this, and so we started with what comes out of the books and all that, but then we added our own sort of twist.

DALEY: Our unique tweaks to the characteristics of the dragon.

GOLDSTEIN: Part of it is, we want it to differentiate itself from all the dragons that are out there in popular culture right now. And so, we had to give it our own kind of…

DALEY: People love dragons, people love dinosaurs, they love these big, mammoth creatures. And we knew we needed to make it something that sets itself apart a little bit from what people are used to. And because it’s D&D, we have the license to do that because it’s all about finding that unique aesthetic. So, we’re excited.

LATCHAM: Yeah. We worked really closely with the Wizards on the look of the dragons, as well.

GOLDSTEIN: Wizards of the Coast. We know there aren’t really wizards.

LATCHAM: They are kind of like real wizards. No, they were very involved though in the actual design of the dragon. It was tremendously weighed on a ton of stuff in the lore, but the dragons themselves, there was so much lore-specific stuff about exactly where the fin goes and exactly how the thumb works.

DALEY: That’s right.

LATCHAM: And it was really wild. It was really fun diving into that with them because they’ve done it for 50 years to make the coolest dragons.

DALEY: Yeah, and our hero dragon, our red dragon, is actually based on a character in the lore, so we’re not totally deviating from what people want.

In the clip that you showed at CCXP you homage and nod to the animated series, which the crowd here lost their minds. And I’m just curious, I was so excited to see that footage, [are] there any other Easter eggs that could be in the movie?

DALEY: As allusions to the ‘80s?

I’m just talking about Dragon’s Lair.

DALEY: Look, we filled this thing with Easter eggs, but we also know that this is the very beginning of our journey, if we’re lucky, knock on wood. So I think there’s a big runway and a lot of room to continue to introduce fan favorites, including some of the more iconic creatures and monsters. But we didn’t want it to be a total kitchen sink…

GOLDSTEIN: Checklist for geeks.

LATCHAM: But I will say the reaction to the ‘80s characters here and in England is really wild because you find places that show really lived, and has lived on generationally, so that dads are showing [it] to their kids. And people have really been with that show for a long time and here, that was outrageous. The reaction was so big.

DALEY: Insane.

GOLDSTEIN: The funny thing about those characters is it’s a cartoon and their costumes are pretty broad and bright and colorful, and we wanted our movie to live in, somewhat, the real world. So we had to sort of tone down some of the color palette from the cartoon, but they’re still recognizable as those cartoon characters.

I lost it when I saw that.

LATCHAM: That’s awesome.

You can be sure Collider’s going to be all over those D&D Easter eggs when Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves swoops into theaters on March 31. Until then, check out our interview with stars Chris Pine and Hugh Grant below:

Disclaimer: This story is auto-aggregated by a computer program and has not been created or edited by filmibee.
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