Robin Hood Mythic Hero

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Oscar winner RUSSELL CROWE reunites with his blockbuster Gladiator director, filmmaking legend RIDLEY SCOTT, for the epic action-adventure Robin Hood

Joining with Oscar-winning producer BRIAN GRAZER (A Beautiful Mind) and Oscar-winning screenwriter BRIAN HELGELAND (L.A. Confidential), they tell the story of the legendary figure known by generations as “Robin Hood,” whose exploits have endured in popular mythology and ignited the imagination of those who share his spirit of adventure and righteousness. 
 
In 13th century England, Robin and his band of marauders confront corruption in a local village and challenge the crown to alter the balance of power between the king and all of his subjects. And whether outlaw or hero, one man from humble beginnings will become an eternal symbol of freedom for his people. 
 
Robin Hood chronicles the life of an expert archer, previously interested only in self-preservation, from his service in King Richard I’s army against the French. Upon Richard’s death, Robin travels to Nottingham, a town suffering from the corruption of a despotic sheriff and crippling taxation, where he falls for the spirited widow Lady Marion (Oscar winner Cate Blanchett of The Aviator, Elizabeth), a woman skeptical of the identity and motivations of this crusader from the forest. Hoping to earn the hand of Maid Marion and salvage the village, Robin assembles a gang whose lethal mercenary skills are matched only by its appetite for life.   
 
With their country weakened from decades of war, embattled from the ineffective rule of the new king and vulnerable to insurgencies from within and threats from afar, Robin and his men heed a call to ever greater adventure. This unlikeliest of heroes and his allies set off to protect their country from slipping into bloody civil war and return glory to England once more. 
 
Crowe and Blanchett lead a cast of accomplished performers, including Oscar winner WILLIAM HURT (The Good Shepherd, A History of Violence) as Sir William Marshal, MARK STRONG (Sherlock Holmes, Kick-Ass) as Sir Godfrey, MARK ADDY (The Full Monty, A Knight’s Tale) as Friar Tuck, OSCAR ISAAC (Body of Lies, Che) as Prince John and DANNY HUSTON (X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Children of Men) as King Richard The Lionheart, as well as legendary performers DAME EILEEN ATKINS (Last Chance Harvey, Cold Mountain) as Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine and MAX VON SYDOW (Shutter Island,The Exorcist) as Sir Walter Loxley.
 
They are joined by rising stars MATTHEW MACFADYEN (Frost/Nixon, Pride & Prejudice) as the Sheriff of Nottingham and SCOTT GRIMES (Crimson Tide, Mystery, Alaska), KEVIN DURAND (Legion, X-Men Origins: Wolverine) and newcomer ALAN DOYLE as Robin’s Merry Men—Will Scarlet, Little John and Allan A’Dayle, respectively.
 
Filmed on location in England and Wales, Robin Hood spans the years from the death of King Richard I in 1199 to the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215. It is produced by Scott, Grazer and Crowe, from a story by Helgeland and ETHAN REIFF & CYRUS VORIS (television’s Sleeper Cell) and a screenplay by Helgeland. 
 
Myth and Legend: Discovering Robin Hood
 
The daring tales of Robin Hood have been a part of English literature for decades. As put succinctly by scholar J.C. Holt: “There are a quiverful of possible Robin Hoods. Even the likeliest is just a shot in the gloaming.” Yet this archetypal story has survived and been passed down through generations, morphing as each era adds to the evolving canon. “What began as an oral legend,” reflects Holt, “ended up as a script.”
 
The stories of Robin are among the oldest in England’s oral histories, stretching far back into the medieval period of the 9th century with tales of “Robin the Be-header” and finding literary form with surviving 15th– and 16th-century ballads such as A Gest of Robyn Hode, Robin Hood and the Curtal Friar and Robin and the Monk. As far as we know, however, there’s no one actual Robin to whom we can look as the single authentic figure. From suggestions that the surname Robehod was often applied to a man after he became an outlaw, to the conjecture that “Robin Hood” was a stock pseudonym used by thieves, theories abound and the legend endures. 
 
The hero has also found a rich legacy on screen. Robin has been featured in upwards of 30 notable film and television productions, ranging from a 1913 Ivanhoe adaptation, through the films of Douglas Fairbanks (Robin Hood, 1922), Errol Flynn (The Adventures of Robin Hood, 1938), Sean Connery and Audrey Hepburn (Robin and Marian, 1976) and Kevin Costner (Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, 1991), as well as popular television serials such as the BBC’s Patrick Troughton series Robin Hood (1953), Robin of Sherwood (1984) and the more recent Robin Hood (2006). 
 
For all his popularity, however, Robin’s on-screen tale rarely evolves, with filmmakers invariably peddling familiar tales such as those of the evil Sheriff of Nottingham, the malicious Guy of Gisburne and the iconic damsel in distress, Maid Marion. Inevitably, Robin has been portrayed as either a dispossessed nobleman or, more likely, a gallant rogue with arms akimbo who serves comeuppance to the rich and gives blissfully to the poor. 
 
Behind the Camera
 
The behind-the-scenes team is led by a crew of longtime Ridley Scott collaborators, including cinematographer JOHN MATHIESON (Gladiator, The Phantom of the Opera), BAFTA-winning production designer ARTHUR MAX (Body of Lies, Gladiator), Oscar®-winning costume designer JANTY YATES (Body of Lies, Gladiator), two-time Oscar®-winning editor PIETRO SCALIA (Body of Lies, JFK) and composer MARC STREITENFELD (American Gangster, Body of Lies).
 
CHARLES J.D. SCHLISSEL (Body of Lies, Matchstick Men), MICHAEL COSTIGAN (Body of Lies, American Gangster), JIM WHITAKER (Changeling, American Gangster) and RYAN KAVANAUGH (The Hangover, The Wolfman) serve as the film’s executive producers.