First announced during Comic-Con 2011, Robert Rodriguez's long-planned live-action remake of the 1983 animated fantasy adventure Fire and Ice is finally moving forward at Sony. The studio has acquired a big package deal, hoping to turn the title into a franchise. The film will serve as a homage to Robert Rodriguez's friend and late artist Frank Frazetta.
Fire and Ice is an expensive buy for Sony at a time when the studio is going through troubles. The deal reunites Sony with Robert Rodriguez, as it was their Columbia Pictures division that acquired his breakout hit El Mariachi at Sundance in the early 90s. The plan is for Fire and Ice to launch a fantasy adventure series that will be informed by the paintings that Frank Frazetta has left behind.
The original Fire and Ice revolved around a small village that is destroyed by a glacier domain ruled by the evil Ice Lord Nekron. The sole survivor of the village is a young warrior who vows revenge. When Nekron sends his subhuman ape-like creatures to kidnap the king's daughter, the warrior tracks her down and frees her.
Fire and Ice will be as much of an homage to Frank Frazetta as Sin City was to Frank Miller. The artist become known for his illustrations of Conan The Barbarian and Princess Of Mars book covers, and worked on a number of movie posters throughout the years. The original Fire and Ice is his sole film. Robert Rodriguez is a lifelong fan, and owner of a great deal of original Frank Frazetta artwork. He routinely tours his collection. About the project, he says:
"I started developing it independently with Bold Films. The more we started putting it together, we realized it could be something much bigger and it started attracting A-list talent. I thought, 'Let's partner with a studio,' but which would give it the rocket fuel it deserves? I'd heard Mike De Luca was looking for franchises, and I thought this could fit the bill because of the subject matter and the talent that was interested, people who'd seen the presentation I had and wanted to. Turned out Mike was a big Frazetta fan, and the studio was the perfect place. I'd started out with them with El Mariachi, and I had a long relationship with the studio and it seemed like the perfect rocket fuel for this. We're actively interviewing to hire A-list writers to do another pass to get this going next year. I'm excited."