Beowulf (2007)

Plot: Beowulf (Ray Winstone) is a brave warrior who travels to Denmark alongside his band of soldiers in answer to the call of King Hrothgar (Anthony Hopkins). Upon arriving, Beowulf immediately becomes attracted to Hrothgar’s wife, Queen Wealtheow (Robin Wright).

Beowulf have to slay a monster called Grendel (Crispin Glover) and later he will have to battle against Grendel’s mother (Angelina Jolie).

Director: Robert Zemeckis

Writing credits: Roger Avary and Neil Gaiman

Cast: Ray Winstone, Robin Wright, Anthony Hopkins, Crispin Glover, Angelina Jolie, Brendan Gleeson, Alison Lohman, Sebastian Roché, Costas Mandylor & John Malkovich

Music by: Alan Silvestri

Genre: Adventure | Fantasy | Animation

Budget: $150.000.000

Filming Dates: September 26, 2005 – December 9, 2005

Filming Locations: California, USA

Release Date: November 16, 2007 (USA)

Box office: $82,280,579 (USA) | $114,113,166 (Foreign)

DVD Rentals: 51.880.000$ (in the first 3 months)

Runtime: 115 minutes

MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence including disturbing images, some sexual material and nudity

Beowulf is a 3D computer-animated fantasy action movie. The film features human characters animated using live-action motion-capture CGI animation.

Robin Wright sings 2 songs in this movie:
Gently as She Goes (Written and Produced by Glen Ballard and Alan Silvestri)
A Hero Comes Home (Written and Produced by Glen Ballard and Alan Silvestri)

Robin Wright as Queen Wealthow

Anthony Hopkins, the first actor cast, decided to use his native Welsh accent “because Welsh is an ancient language, several thousand years old.”
Hopkins’ lilting cadence became the template for the other actors. “We all decided to do a Welsh-ish accent,” says Robin Wright. “The story is obviously set in Denmark but it was written in Old English and Tony had such a great Welsh accent naturally.  It seemed like a good middle-line to go for, instead of traditional British, and we couldn’t really do Old English because nobody would understand it. The dialogue was asking for us to be able to roll and tap our Rs and the Welsh accent allowed us to access that.”

Robin Wright and Robert Zemeckis had worked together before on “Forrest Gump.”  As in that film, the “Beowulf” story follows her character through several decades.

Robert Zemeckis: “Robin is so subtle and wonderful and real and grounded in everything she does as an actress. She brought a maturity to the part, even when she was playing Wealthow as a 16-year-old girl. That’s another great thing about working in performance capture.  Robin was able to bring all her experience to this part and the technique allowed her to appear as a teenager and to follow her saga as an adult. She was just magnificent. She understood the torment and the pain Beowulf is putting her through and she played it with such realism that it takes your breath away”.

Beowulf falls for Wealthow when he comes to save her husband’s kingdom. But like King Hrothgar (Anthony Hopkins), Beowulf’s fatal flaws, his lust for power and glory, his weakness for other women and the Faustian bargain he makes with a demonic but beguiling seductress, ultimately poison his relationship with Wealthow.
“She marries King Hrothgar at a very young age, an arranged marriage, and he is unfaithful,” Robin Wright says. “Wealthow later falls in love with Beowulf when he comes to save them and, sadly, the pattern repeats itself.  In way, she falls in love with the hero and becomes blind to what true heroism is. Beowulf is a hero but, ultimately, he is a human being and when he betrays her – just as the king did, she loses the love and admiration she had for him.”

The story called for Wealthow to undergo several emotionally distressing moments and Wright notes that the performance capture approach assisted him in tackling her scenes.  “It was an incredibly fast pace and the notion that we could play out a scene was great. You don’t have the wait of spending 12 hours on one scene from 4,000 different angles. We’d sometimes bang out a scene in 15 minutes, do a five-page scene in two takes. It’s almost what you yearn for when you come to the set – you want to be in that mode. It’s like working out on a treadmill.   You don’t want to get on for five minutes and then sit down for 20, and then have to get right back on again and work up your heart rate again. The way Bob worked, we were able to get in there, do the sequences with intense focus and finish the day by 5 p.m. That’s civilized.   Especially when it’s emotional, the down time, the stop-start thing is a drag,”

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