38 years have passed and writer/director Don Coscarelli has gotten the rights back to his seminal 1980s fantasy film, The Beastmaster. Sadly, the location of the The Beastmaster's original camera negative has been bungled and Coscarelli is desperate to get it back.
With the bad news aside, the copyright to the screenplay of The Beastmaster has been reclaimed under copyright law by its original creators which paves the way for a new iteration of The Beastmaster to entertain audiences worldwide. Producer/Co-writer Paul Pepperman & Director/Co-writer Don Coscarelli are back in control of their creation.
In the original movie, Dar is the son of a king who is hunted by a priest after his birth and grows up in another family. When he becomes a grown man his new father is murdered by savages and he discovers that he has the ability to communicate with the animals, which leads him on his quest for revenge against his father's killers.
After its initial 1982 debut, The Beastmaster grew in popularity and eventually spawned two sequels in the 90s. Beastmaster 2: Through the Portal of Time was released for a limited theatrical run in 1991 followed by a TV movie for NBC in 1996 titled Beastmaster III: The Eye of Braxus, which also starred Tony Todd.
As explained by the freshly launched Beastmaster website, The Beastmaster was, and is, one of the most popular films on television of all time. It ran in heavy rotation and seemed to play daily. As Billy Crystal joked on the Tonight Show, "What does HBO stand for?" "Hey, Beastmaster's on!" TBS the flagship cable channel became known as "The Beastmaster Station." A franchise was born as the film ultimately spawned two sequels and a successful TV series.
There is a generation of fans of the original film who would welcome a big-screen reboot of the original sword & sorcery classic and Coscarelli and Pepperman are determined to make that happen. The bronze-age hero and his furry fighting force may be coming soon to a theater near you.