Clash of Titans: Leterrier’s Vision for Remake

Louis Leterrier’s “Clash of the Titans” stars Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, and Ralph Fiennes. The film is released in 3-D April 2 by Warner.

A real fan of the original film, Leterrier felt a bit like a kid in a candy store during filming. “1981’s ‘Clash of the Titans’ was one of my favorite movies–it was actually one of the first magical movies I ever saw. I was wowed by it. I jumped at the chance to do my own version.”

The director’s enthusiasm for the material showed. Producer Kevin De La Noy observes, “Louis has a love of filmmaking and storytelling, and he approached every challenge with humor and a determination to make it work. His tireless energy was an inspiration to us all. He got engrossed in each and every shot; he could see it clearly and he wanted to impart that to everyone. And he got the desired results.”

Bringing the Cult Classic to the 21st century

Taking on the task of bringing the cult classic into the 21st century were screenwriters Travis Beacham, Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi.

“I was so happy with what the screenwriters did,” recalls Leterrier. “It wasn’t just a shot-for-shot remake to be done with modern technology. It maintained the integrity of the original, but it was completely different.”

“I loved the original, so this was an irresistible, if intimidating, proposition,” says Beacham. “One of the things I loved about it, and myths in general, is that they put familiar human struggles in the context of impossible circumstances, to express things that couldn’t otherwise be expressed. Want to save the girl? How bad? Because you’ll have to fight this unstoppable monster to get to her. Want to find yourself? You’ll have to journey to the edge of the world and back again. Want to rebel against your parents? Well, your dad’s a god, so let’s see what you’re made of.”

“We talked a lot about the tone we were going for, trying to make it a fun adventure with a great sense of momentum but with the action rooted in the characters and what they were going through,” Hay says.

Manfredi adds, “To us, action only works if it’s about emotion. We wanted to use every action beat to reveal who Perseus is in that moment–the action is the proving ground that forges his character and his relationships. It has to have consequences to people we care about.”

“It’s classic storytelling–literally,” says Iwanyk. “It’s life and death, betrayal and courage…all played out by and humans and monsters and gods. My goal in reinventing this movie was to give people that same feeling I had as a kid, but with all the advanced technology available today.”

Third Dimension: Leterrier’s 3D Vision

Helping to achieve that goal, a new dimension–3D–was added to 2010’s “Clash of the Titans.” It fit perfectly with the filmmakers’ vision. “Even though we weren’t shooting in 3D, I designed a lot of the shots with that visual style in mind–stepping into new worlds, big creatures coming at you, fantastic images,” attests Leterrier, whose foresight turned out to be quite fortunate. “The conversion to 3D adds incredible depth to each scene, enhancing the story and providing an all-encompassing ‘Clash’ experience.”