Now let’s just hold our horses and keep away from the “who asked for this?!” talk, because you know who asked for a sequel to Rupert Sanders’ Snow White and the Huntsman? Every single person who paid to see the first film – $400M worth of ticket sales, worldwide – probably including you. It’s okay, we all have to learn from our mistakes, and perhaps now we’ll get a new revisionist fairy tale (heavy on the revisionism) that doesn’t feel so bizarrely dark and boring.
Back in June, we learned that director Frank Darabont was indeed set to helm the newest film and, what, we’re sorry, Kristen Stewart, no, we don’t need you for this one, thanks though. Now we’re getting still more information, thanks to Deadline, including a release date for the film (April 22, 2016), the news that both Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron are indeed set to come back and that we’re calling this thing The Huntsman because why not. We also have a better idea of what we’re dealing with in terms of plot, though little of it should surprise us, considering the title of this thing, the news that it’s a prequel and its pair of returning stars. It’s about the Huntsman (Hemsworth) and Queen Ravenna (Theron). Sure. The film will reportedly focus on “how the fates of two characters — The Huntsman Eric and Ravenna — intersected before they met Snow White.”
Hey, what a great idea—wait. Wait a second. We already know how their lives intersected before the film, and a large part of the first film is all about, well, their lives intersecting.
Let’s reach back to 2012, when Sanders’ Snow White and the Huntsman hit theaters in early June. It was the second Snow White film to arrive that year (Mirror Mirror hit theaters earlier, in March), and the film promised the kind of dark and twisted and battle-heavy take on a fairy tale that, well, sounds kind of expected now but was at least a little exciting back then. At the heart of the traditional story was the evil Queen Ravenna, Snow White’s nasty stepmother who literally sucks the life out of people in order to stay forever youthful. Snow White’s blossoming beauty sends her into a rage, and the two come to blows, with Ravenna really unhinged by a prophecy that holds that Snow White will usurp her unless she eats her heart. When Snow White (who has been caged up for most of her life) escapes to the forest, Ravenna sends Eric the Huntsman to go get her.
Why would Eric do such a thing? Because he and Ravenna have a history — an intersection of fates, if you will! — one that we see in flashback. Turns out, Ravenna’s brother killed Eric’s wife Sara, and Ravenna baits him for his Snow White murder mission by telling him she’ll bring his wife back from the dead. Cool backstory, right? So how do we make a movie out of this?
Behold, some ideas, fairest of them all! (Or, you know, at least fair enough):
1. Total Revisionist History
Picture this: Eric’s wife Sara (you know, the dead one) isn’t really a dead girl named Sara who was killed by Ravenna’s brother Finn (even though we saw this with our own eyes). It’s actually Ravenna herself! Let’s just rejigger this entire thing to make it a twisted romance between the duo, which makes zero sense but adds a nice twist to the end of the first film (when Ravenna dies).
2. Childhood Pals
Okay, so there is a Sara, and there’s also a Ravenna and a Finn and they were all friends with Eric as kids — call it the Maleficent treatment and be done with it — which adds a nice layer of drama and trauma that the first film didn’t have. Oh, except for the drama and trauma of Eric’s wife being murdered. Guess that wasn’t enough.
3. Prison Break
There’s a prison break of some kind. Why? It’s Frank Darabont. This is how Hollywood works, right? Wait, where are you going?
4. Branching Out the Family Tree
So if Ravenna and Finn being pals isn’t dramatic enough, how about they’re actually family? Cousins? The towns around Ravenna’s eventual kingdom look kind of small, surely everyone there is sprung from the same line, even distantly. What else? Shrug.
5. More of the Same
There’s already a backstory in place here, and not one that merits an entire new film about it. We know what happened with Eric and Ravenna. Can that be dragged out for another film? One filled with more drinking and trips to the Dark Forest by Eric, and one that chronicles Ravenna’s rise to leader of the Dark Army? Sure, okay, type up the script now.
These all sound kind of, to be kind, iffy? Right? What ideas do you have for this Huntsman prequel? And, no, you can’t say “don’t make it,” because we’re too far gone now. It’s going to happen, but what is it going to be?