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Ron Howard Brings the Aztecs to Showtime

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Trade News | August 1, 2012 | Comments ()


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So the Spanish landed in Mexico with a hundred men and conquered it in a whirlwind of backstabbing, horses, armor, and gunpowder. And that's before ten thousand years of European disease hit the New World all at once in an event that makes the Hot Zone and various other nightmare scenarios of pandemic look like a nasty cold making the rounds through the kindergarten. If one were to pitch this story to a Hollywood executive who knows not the slightest thing about history (I know, it's a stretch, but bear with me) it would have to be described as 300, except with guns, and instead of dying in defense, the impossibly tiny outnumbered army is the invader who wins.

That's the terrible way to pitch a movie version of what could be an incredible story of layer upon layer of tragedy. Thankfully, the task has fallen to Ron Howard instead of Zack Snyder. And Howard is bringing the series to Showtime.

Deadline is kind enough to summarize for us:

"The story of famed Spanish Conquistador Hernan Cortes, who led the Spanish conquest in Mexico, and his clash with Moctezuma II, the last ruler of the Aztec Empire which fell at the hands of Cortes and his men. Filled with blood, lust, gold, magic and mythology, Conquest is described as "a classic war story about two powerful men and their people ultimately leading to the destruction of the Aztec culture and the men themselves."

No word on whether Jared Diamond will be a consulting producer, or if this affects Howard's involvement in the "Arrested Development" restart or the "Dark Tower" movie/series/thingie.


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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • Stellamaris2012

    wait, we're hating on Jared Diamond now??
    Dude made his argument, you can agree or disagree, but he presented his points pretty well, I'd say. I loved Guns Germs and Steel and had fantastic debates over its pros and cons with colleagues. That book made anthropology fascinating for me.
    I was a huge fan until I read his Why is Sex Fun book. Now THAT was tripe.

  • huey tlatoani

    Jared Diamond is pretty horrible. Read Camilla Townsend's Malintzin's Choices for a far better look at the complexities and factors of European expansion in North America.

    No need for a racist, teleological, and problematic "materialist" determination of world history.

  • BarbadoSlim

    Had the Aztec worried more about all the other peoples they had screwed over and less about human sacrifice they might had not fallen to a bunch of unshaven and stinky European thugs.

  • Back in my undergrad days, in a Mexican history class, we were told to write a short play about this very topic. We used my golden retriever as a Spanish war dog, and I taught her to growl on cue just for this play. She was absolutely perfect in rehearsal, and then when we got on stage she wagged her tail at Moctezuma, wiggled across the stage to him, and then rolled over for tummy scratches. I'm guessing that was a better historical representation than Ron Howard's version will be.

  • MichaelEhrgott

    This could be pretty amazing. Javier Bardem for Cortes. An epic vision of Tenochtitlan needs to happen.

  • TheOriginalMRod

    Shouldn't he be busy making another Dan Brown novel into a film? That is about as close to "historical" as he should get. He is a hack.

  • huey tlatoani

    yeah 300 "spaniards" (most of whom came from Hispanola and were various shades of half-indian or half-black) plus something like 10,000 indian auxillaries added by former tenochteca tribute states.

    i hope that Ron Howard knows enough to avoid the really dumb, Jared Diamond version of the story.

  • John G.

    but Mitt Romney says that Cortes beat them with superior Spanish culture

  • Ron Howard ia hack.

  • Bothari

    The natives are throwing dogs at us! Itlan!

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