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KING ARTHUR

About The Film
"‘King Arthur' is the definitive story of the leader and warrior who emerged to lead the Britons against the Saxons. It is the story of the man who became King Arthur,” says Jerry Bruckheimer, producer of "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl” and "Black Hawk Down.” "That's what excited me about this film – it's a new look at a tale that we thought we were familiar with. The truth is that King Arthur lived in a much earlier time period than you see in most of the movie versions – the Dark Ages. David Franzoni worked out a new approach to the subject matter that offered a more historically accurate story of King Arthur.”

"There's a moment in history that we can actually pin down,” Franzoni recalls. "There is a name and there is a battle. The name was Lucius Artorius Castus and the battle was the Battle of Badon Hill. This battle changed the face of Britain and created a legend which has survived for generations and has been reinvented many times. I thought it was a great opportunity to go back and try to find out what these people were like and to tell their story realistically.”

"I love going to the movies and watching big, epic films and I also love making films that change your perception through telling a story in a much more realistic way,” Bruckheimer explains. "That is what ‘King Arthur' does; it tells you the true story about what was going on during that period.”

"This is ‘King Arthur' as ‘The Wild Bunch,'” says Franzoni. "The Sarmatian cavalry or knights were the last Roman Special Forces unit with Artorius Castus as their commander; they are assigned one last mission in enemy territory. All around them, the Roman Empire is pulling out and collapsing. These men have ruthlessly and brutally suppressed everyone around them for the sake of Rome. There's blood all over them and their bond is that blood. It's a bond of what they have done and what they have known.”

To capture the unromantic, harsh essence of "King Arthur,” Bruckheimer sought Antoine Fuqua, director of "Training Day,” a starkly realistic police drama set on the streets of Los Angeles. "I had been a fan of Antoine's for many years through his videos and commercials,” says Jerry Bruckheimer. "He did a video for us for ‘Dangerous Minds' and I always wanted to do a movie with him.”

Fuqua, a native of Pittsburgh, grew up with the myths and movies of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. "I grew up watching stories like ‘King Arthur' – the big, epic historical movies,” Fuqua says. "Through the years, I have studied mythology and related matters and specifically the legend of King Arthur. As a kid, I used to play knights with my friends and then as an artist, I wanted to make a film like this. When the opportunity came through Jerry Bruckheimer to do this film, I didn't hesitate to make it.”

"I think Jerry thought I was the right guy for this film because I believe this movie is gritty – you can actually taste and smell the violence and death. You can feel the cold and the despair. It's very apocalyptic. In the world at that time, there wasn't a lot of hope – hope is what Arthur represents.”

This was to be the basis of "King Arthur”: an action drama that charted the bloody adventures of King Arthur and his band of knights. "It's much more reality-based as opposed to the fantasy,” says Fuqua. "It excited me because it's King Arthur as you've never seen him before. What appealed to me was that it was based on a sense of a reality. There was historical research done and there were some facts we found that we didn't know before. It's thrilling to discover that there is this hero that you grew up with who actually really existed. That's exciting.”

Despite his life-long interest in Arthur and the Knights, Antoine Fuqua had never h

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