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"Denzel Washington Will Terrorize Rome as Hannibal" Topic

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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian20 Nov 2023 5:26 a.m. PST

…Deadline reports that Denzel Washington is reteaming with director Antoine Fuqua ("Training Day," "The Equalizer 3") for an as-yet untitled take on Hannibal's story for Netflix. Screenwriter John Logan, who was on the team that brought us "Gladiator," rounds out an all-star squad that should give any war movie fan goosebumps…

Military: link

rustymusket20 Nov 2023 7:27 a.m. PST

I will be looking forward to it!

Leadjunky20 Nov 2023 8:10 a.m. PST

You'd have thought Netflix would have learned by the level of their success with Cleopatra.

Deucey Supporting Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 8:20 a.m. PST


Are you suggesting that Carthage WASN'T founded by Sub-Saharan African seafarers?

On the flip side, no one complained when Keanu Reeves played a samurai in 47 Ronin.

troopwo Supporting Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 8:42 a.m. PST

For Denzel Washington,,, I'ld give it a go.

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 9:02 a.m. PST

Ditto, troopwo.

Personal logo Mister Tibbles Supporting Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 9:19 a.m. PST

Easy out for me. We don't subscribe to Netflix.

Oooo. I just got an idea for a new poll.

evil grin

Swampking20 Nov 2023 10:23 a.m. PST

I like Denzel but couldn't they find an Arab actor? Or, since Carthage was founded by the Philistines, possibly a Palestinian or Jordanian actor? Then again, given the current situation in the Middle East, maybe Denzel was the best choice.

I know he's too old but Ghassan Massoud (Saladin in "Kingdom of Heaven") did an awesome job! It's not like there aren't any Arab actors.

Netflix is always a big pass for me.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 12:59 p.m. PST

Netflix? Well, then that's out for me.

I don't have huge problem with Denzel Washington in the the role, though, no, Hannibal was of Levant or even possibly Greek origin (hard to sayŚ the Ancients got around the Mediterranean for thousands of years before either Rome or Carthage came to the fore). So who knows what he looked like?

My issue will be with the fact that Hannibal was NOT the greatest general of his time. How can I say this?

He lost his war.

Sure, he knocked over some really poor opposition early on, led by bumbling cushy civilian-life commanders, but once Fabius Maximus Cunctator ("The Delayer") took command of the Romans, Hannibal's strategic goal was rendered impossible. He had to chase Fabius all over Italy, and wore his forces out (and lost his allies) doing so. Later at Zama he then faced a capable tactical opponent in Scipio Africanus, who out thought and out fought him.
Hannibal thus failed on all fronts of primary concern for a general: Logistics, anticipating enemy strategy, maneuvers, holding territory, gathering intelligence, maintaining supportive alliances and defending his country when everything was on the line.

"Bad general! Bad!"

If the movie shows *that* (which it won't), it will at least be truthful.

I have low hopes.
But it will probably be very entertaining.

Phillius Sponsoring Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 12:59 p.m. PST

In lieu of a more semitic looking actor, I'm happy with Denzel Washington. Questions will of course be raised about the correct species of elephant, which mountains they are actually filmed on, and, which actual lakes pose as the original ones.

Leadjunky20 Nov 2023 2:44 p.m. PST

I am a DW fan and I am sure it will be a well done movie. I have just noticed a lot of odd casting choices the last few years in both fiction and historical adaptations.

Tgerritsen Supporting Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 3:20 p.m. PST


"On the flip side, no one complained when Keanu Reeves played a samurai in 47 Ronin."

I sure did. Yeesh.

Archon6420 Nov 2023 4:25 p.m. PST

Yeah, @Phillius, and people will complain about the shape of the Roman shields, the colour of their tunics and whether they're wearing pants.

The 'race' debate seems to be more about inserting African-Americans into history than any desire for accuracy. Hannibal was not the race you think he is, just like Cleopatra. I wonder how many people complaining can actually locate Carthage on a map?

I think you can do worse than Denzel Washington as an actor.

Prince Alberts Revenge20 Nov 2023 5:44 p.m. PST

I don't hate the Denzel selection, just glad the movie can get possibly get msde. Vin Diesel has been trying to get a Hannibal trilogy greenlit for about 20 years now.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP20 Nov 2023 6:12 p.m. PST

Out for me, I don't do subscription entertainment. But I look forward to reconstructions of the extinct Mediterranean elephant, and I have every confidence that modern makeup or CGI can make Denzel Washington a credible Levantine.

More seriously, this sort of thing dates back at least to W.E. B. Dubois, and I expect it to go on for decades. North Africa, and especially its ruling class in classical times, tends to be white or black depending on the racial obsessions and rhetorical needs of the person telling the story. Hannibal (this time) is the hero, so in this year of our Lord 2023, Hannibal in 201 BC is Black. If they were filming "Masinissa" Masinissa would be Black, and Hannibal would not only be white, he'd probably have an Oxbridge accent.

I doubt Cleopatra looked much like Elizabeth Taylor either.

Prince Rupert of the Rhine21 Nov 2023 12:27 a.m. PST

I'm not bothered by Denzel playing Hannibal (though it would be better with Samuel L Jackson playing a street wise Hannibal) but I bet the battle scenes will annoy the crap out of me.
The battle of Cannae will probably be reduced to two great battle lines charging headlong into each other for some some 300 style combat, while a barrage of flaming arrows and exploding trebuchet rounds frame the whole battle in fireballs, all interspersed with Lord of the Rings style rampaging CGI African Bush Elephants. Meanwhile Hannibal will go all John Wick on Gaius Terentius Varro in a epic bad good guy match up in the middle of the giant melee.

martin goddard Sponsoring Member of TMP21 Nov 2023 2:55 a.m. PST

I will watch it.


Personal logo Der Alte Fritz Sponsoring Member of TMP26 Nov 2023 9:12 p.m. PST

Isn't Denzel a bit old to play Hannibal?

And I thought that the Phoenicians founded Carthage.

Gazzola26 Dec 2023 3:58 p.m. PST

He lost his war so he must be a bad general! LOL That's the biggest joke of the year. That's like saying a football team is bad if they win every game ten nil but lose the final! I guess there must be an awful lot of 'bad' generals out there throughout history! LOL

Emperorbaz30 Dec 2023 1:23 p.m. PST

It doesn't matter. They are ACTING. it's just pretend.

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