Zack Snyder Compares Rebel Moon to Conan the Barbarian and Excalibur

Zack Snyder’s Rebel Moon movie may be a sci-fi film set in times and galaxies unknown, but the director pulled some major influences from the sword and sorcery films of the past. After spending some serious time in the DC Universe and building out a zombie franchise, Snyder is set up with his longtime passion project at Netflix, a project inspired by his love of Star Wars. Rebel Moon is a massive movie (likely multiple movies) and obviously pulls from all corners of entertainment history. Those influences apparently include titles like Excalibur and Conan the Barbarian.

Snyder recently spoke to Empire about Rebel Moon, which is set to debut on Netflix later this year. He talked specifically about a robot character named Jimmy, who’s voiced by none other than Oscar-winner Anthony Hopkins. According to Snyder, both that character and another named Milius (played by E. Duffy) are heavily influenced by knights of the round table.

“I’m a huge Excalibur fanatic. He’s a Lancelot for sure,” Snyder explained. “I was thinking about him, and how Milius is Percival.”

The Excalibur references are clear, but the ties to Conan go even deeper, especially with Millius. The character is named after Conan the Barbarian writer-director John Milius, as well as filmmaker Mike Mills.

Rebel Moon Could’ve Been at Lucasfilm

Snyder has never been shy about his love for Star Wars, and he actually pitched the original idea to Lucasfilm at one point, in the hopes the company could produce it. Of course, that was just before Disney acquired Lucasfilm and went to work on more Star Wars movies.

“I was in production on Man of Steel,” Snyder told Vanity Fair. “I had heard there were rumblings about possibly doing another three [Star Wars] movies at some point. My take was that, if you just let me have the IP, I’ll make this cool movie, and I won’t get in the way of anything you guys are doing.”

The film eventually ended up at Netflix, and Snyder is using it as a launching point for a potential franchise, filled with original worlds, characters, and stories.

“The concept came from being at film school,” said Snyder. “I think I had a pitch class — what would be a cool idea for a movie? And I was like, ‘a defending-the-village space movie.’ Only afterward, I thought it would fit in the Star Wars universe. Then it went all the way back around. It’s been literally on the back burner for a long time. I don’t even know if the burner was on for a lot of that time.”

What Is Rebel Moon About?

Rebel Moon follows residents of a peaceful colony at the edge of the galaxy that become threatened by a tyrannical leader. A young woman named Kora sets out to find great warriors on other worlds to help as they take a stand against Regent Ballsarius.

The film stars Sofia Boutella, Charlie Hunnam, Ray Fisher, Djimon Hounsou, Corey Stoll, Ed Skrein, Cleopatra Coleman, Fra Fee, Cary Elwes, and Anthony Hopkins.

Rebel Moon hits Netflix on December 22nd.