Vin Diesel posted the above image on his Facebook fan page yesterday evening… not sure if it really means anything, other than to point out the fact that it’s his “Dream” project, as the image suggests.
Or is he dropping a hint, teasing us with what might be some movement on the project finally, after about a decade or so since it was first announced.
Diesel has been jocking this project for what seems like forever! I’m referring of course to Hannibal The Conqueror – the Carthaginian general who led an army, complete with war elephants, across the Alps, to battle Rome in the Second Punic war (his father Hamilcar Barca was the leading Carthaginian commander during the First Punic War).
I believe Denzel Washington, at one time, before Diesel, was interested in the role. He’s a little too old to play Hannibal now – at least, if the plan is to focus the film’s story on the Second Punic War years, during which Hannibal would have aged from 30 to about 45 years old (Diesel is 44 currently). And for some, the mixed-race Vin is probably a better fit for the Carthaginian Hannibal (who would be a modern-day Tunisian from the northern tip of Africa) than Washington. But that’s another discussion for another post ;)
Will the film ever get made? Well, if Vin Diesel wants to star in it, it had better happen soon, before he also grows too old to play the part.
The last we wrote about the project was in mid-2010 when Diesel posted a comment on his Facebook page, accompanied by a picture of himself with Denzel Washington, which you can see below, which seemed to suggest that the project might indeed finally be coming together, dropping a couple of bombs regarding who might be attached to co-star and direct the film; specifically, he said the following:
I told you about a meeting with a director in LA, I said it was important and I would explain later… well the Director I met was Tony Scott, I had met his brother for something a long time ago… but I had never met him. I have always been a fan of both of their work… Well this meeting was exceptional. We talked about Hannibal and the Punic Wars and how by nature the story demanded three movies. The first movie centering around Hamilcar, Father of Hannibal and the Defender of Africa, in the First Punic War. He said he would get our friend Denzel to play Hamilcar. Haha, very super cool… Denzel is a friend, whom I admire and who has given industry advice that I use to this day. Him playing Hamilcar and for Tony to Direct… exciting to say the least.
So… hmmm… what to make of that, if anything at all…?
It could have all just be wishful thinking, or it could have been something that might stick.
Regardless, 2 years later, the project hasn’t materialized, as Diesel continues to fund his bank account with sequels. And I haven’t heard anything about it since then (although that doesn’t mean nothing’s been reported).
I should note that the project is still listed on his IMDBPro page with an “Unknown” ETA.
if this ever happens, it’ll be a pretty big deal, don’t you think? We’re talking a fairly large budget, especially if a trilogy is the plan, as Vin stated; and it’ll make for another pairing of Tony Scott with Denzel Washington. But this sounds more like Tony’s brother, Ridley Scott’s territory – the historical epic. We could say Tony is the “contemporarist” between the 2; modern-day action movies are his staple; his frenetic camerawork, whiz-bang editing and dominating soundtracks are well-suited for films like Enemy Of The State, Domino, Deja Vu and others.
But I could be proven wrong.
Quite frankly, I’m not so sure we’ll ever see Hannibal The Conqueror on our movie screens any time soon; likely not with Diesel and Denzel. It’s not a story Hollywood is anxious to tell; 3 decisive Carthaginian victories over the mighty Roman Republic during the Second Punic War (even though Hannibal would eventually be defeated)?
Here’s the pic he posted on Facebook 2 years ago: