So You're Making A Bionicle Movie...

This is probably going to get merged with another topic

What famous actors would you guys cast for the movie? @Ozkabot has suggested Jeremy Irons as Turaga Vakama, which sounds like a pretty decent role for him.
Here are a few I have thought of: What about Tom Holland as Takua, and Julie Andrews as Turaga Nokama?

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I like the idea of Cryoshell doing the soundtrack. It would be great to have them involved, but I see the first three films soundtracks being primarily tribal drums and chants, with a bit of electronic / rock for intense scenes. To me, this just seems so far removed from Cryoshell’s style, I don’t really see the point in getting them to do it outside of “hey wouldn’t this be cool”. That being said, they may be more suited to films set during the Ignition trilogy, since by that point the whole Mata Nui tribal aesthetic was moved on from into more sci-fi.

Of course, your idea for the soundtrack may be different and far more suited to Cryoshell, but the way I’m imagining an 01 - 03 based soundtrack I feel they’re an odd choice.

I do like the idea of the corresponding Cryoshell song being used within the films though - E.g. when we’re first introduced to Karda Nui, have some huge wide shots of the Toa Nuva flying around Karda Nui that really showcase the environment, ‘filmed’ from such a distance that the Toa look like ants, all with Gravity Hurts playing in the background (specifically the calmer part at the start of the song). No action, no talking, just giving the audience a minute or so to take in the scenery and atmosphere - it’s situations like this where Cryoshells songs would be perfect IMO. The more intense part of the song could work for a fight scene once they’ve got the battle vehicles - I love the idea of these ships soaring through the sky with the chorus of Gravity Hurts playing - instrumental preferably.

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I definitely agree with the notion that the marketing should be as ubiquitous as possible - not so much as to be annoying, but enough to make sure people know this is happening and exactly when; to make sure it doesn’t slip under the radar. Also, finding a release slot when there isn’t anything else big happening would be of vital importance, because otherwise it would probably stand zero chance. I love Bionicle, but let’s be real here; outside of vague nostalgia and memes, it isn’t really that big in the public eye.

Also important - go in with the possibility for sequels in mind, but don’t plan on them from the outset; just announcing the idea of a ‘cinematic universe’ (even if it would be much more linear than most) would inherently generate a certain degree of antipathy toward the project, so go in with the intention of making something that will stand on its own merits first and foremost. Maybe you could have an aftercredits scene teasing Bohrok (since this would be an adaptation of 2001, best place to start is the beginning after all) or other future storylines, but even that feels like it would be pushing things too much.

But yeah, marketing. I do think going with the mystery angle to start off would be best, and let people know that this is going to be something new and unique that they wouldn’t find anywhere else; but I feel relying solely on that would leave most people nonplussed or feeling it would be too ‘weird’ for them, so once we get to trailers and stuff, it would be better to show more. Not spoil the whole movie, of course, but give something more concrete for people to latch onto. I think the first like, ‘teaser’ trailer should focus on giving people a rundown of the premise - an abbreviated recap of the classic Legend Of Mata Nui and the Toa’s arrival could work for that, establishing the stakes and conflict without giving anything away. After that, though, a second trailer should ■■■■■ the focus onto the Toa themselves, and essentially sell them on the basis of their personalities and interpersonal conflict; kind of a ‘how are these wildly disparate heroes possibly going to get along?’ question.

And that conflict would then be a big focus of the actual script as well; for extra thematic resonance and general relatability, we could draw parallels between Mata Nui and Makuta’s conflict as ‘siblings’ and the Toa, also considered brothers and sister, struggling to get along. I think framing it like that would kind of ground it in a more real-world sort of thing, even with the overall tribal and alien setting being compelling in its uniqueness. Unlike G2, we also want to give adequate time to worldbuilding and atmosphere, so having Takua’s travels as a B-plot would help with that immersion as sort of a MNOG-lite. But the main intention would be to flesh out the Toa a little better, and make their path toward unity more of a plausible and compelling struggle as they hunt for the masks. At first they find their different approaches incompatible and think the others are doing it wrong, but over time they realize that those differences are their strength.

I’m thinking a four-act structure might make the most sense. The first act is all about the Toa’s arrival and introductions, getting the Turaga’s exposition, etc. and ending with their initial meeting, argument, and decision to split up. Second act would be their individual quests, with some time interacting with the Matoran as well; it would end in Lewa’s infection and Onua’s rescue, hammering in that they can’t do this on their own. So in act three the Toa would reconvene and finish up the mask hunt in teams, and have to actually resolve or shelve their personality clashes in a meaningful way; this would end in a Triumph-Of-The-Toa-like scenario where Makuta goes all-out trying to destroy them or split them apart, but just winds up bringing them together more. Then the fourth act would be the actual descent into his lair, fighting the Manas, the Shadow Toa, and then Makuta himself, with the Shadow Toa encounter in particular providing final resolution to lingering issues with themselves and each other, and the Makuta encounter being essentially a test of that.

This… would probably be a bit of a longer film as a result; somewhere in the general vicinity of three hours. That could harm it in some ways, since less showing times in a day and all, but provided the marketing and timeslot are ideal, it shouldn’t harm that end of things too much, and hopefully allow for a more complete artistic vision and better movie overall.

Also, since there’s been a lot of discussion of music, my proposal would be someone like Bear McCreary for the score (since he’s fairly versatile as a composer and his work on Battlestar Galactica has employed a lot of instruments and sounds from other parts of the world) with maybe some input from a techno musician like Daft Punk or Paul Oakenfold. I think the score would ideally be a fine mixture of techno, (in particular I’d think trance and drum’n’bass would play well with the alien tropical setting) traditional tribal, some mild symphonic elements, and hard rock, with a fair amount of variation and different balances of each as befitting each scene; ideally it would be the kind of soundtrack people could listen to and enjoy independently of the movie, instead of just fading into the background. New themes would be cool, but I think bringing back Nathan Furst’s symphonic themes for MoL within the context of this mix of genres could be really cool too. A new Cryoshell song for the credits would be icing on the cake.

Aesthetics-wise, I think ‘live-action’ would do better, both for realizing it well and for getting people to take it seriously; for better or for worse animation isn’t popular in the western sphere outside of children’s content. (Which this would ideally be still oriented toward, no hard-R violence or whatever. Just, the idea is to have everyone like it, so attracting the adults and kids in equal measure is the aim?) Of course I say live action in quotes, but this would basically be motion-capture CGI paired with actual live-action shooting in various real-world locations, probably also somewhat accentuated with CG. As much practical stuff as possible, basically, to keep it feeling relatively authentic, even if ultimately a lot would still have to be done in post-production.

Also, for the designs I know some people really really insist they have to look like the sets, but I think something along the lines of the Miramax Trilogy would work better. Not the exact same style, mind you, but still in that general area, to allow for as much expressiveness and plausibility as possible. Mind you, it would be vital to avoid going full-on Bayformers with it, but like, a nice middle ground of detail vs comprehensibility would probably work. Think Bumblebee Movie but with more pistons and organic parts. (And since they don’t have to transform, that would help out immensely; a lot of the detail would be more in like, giving them a plausible biology and articulation and expression, while still remaining faithful to the overall designs.)

And yeah, if, if it does well, then absolutely go for sequels, there’s a lot of material to work from after all, and plenty of potential to actually improve on the original stuff instead of making a shallower imitation. Whether or not it’ll stick with people is hard to say at this point, (also, if it would be theoretically coming out in the next five or so years, it risks having to compete with the Avatar sequels, which may dominate that niche of ‘alien tropical settings’ as far as novelty goes) but I think it could be done. The big thing would be to both make it new and unique and something people can’t get anywhere else, while still making the characters relatable and compelling. And generally, just make sure people are aware of it at all to begin with.

I may have put like, completely way too much thought into this over the past few months.

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What what be your suggestions as far as casting goes?

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If I was put in charge of making a Bionicle movie, that would be a very bad idea and I’d question the judgement of whoever made that decision

Okay, on a bit more serious note, my goal for the movie would be to adapt the 2001 story- kinda like what @MaximusPrimal said earlier. The main story would revolve around the Toa Mata’s scavenger-hunting and other shenanigans, with some of the exploits of Takua and the Chronicler’s Company being a side plot. The two plots would fully converge in the third act/climax. I’d definitely wanna appeal to the nostalgia of the fans and remain true to the source material, while at the same time taking a few liberties and adding some new stuff to ensure that they’re still getting something somewhat new, if a bit familiar. I’m not sure who I’d want writing it, but I know I’d definitely want to consult Greg Farshtey and anybody else involved with G1’s story and universe I could get in contact with.

The movie would probably be CGI with little to no live-action elements. Maybe I’d do some motion capture with the Toa, but I’m not sure. As far as art direction/character design goes, I’d take a similar approach to the old movies: not quite set-accurate, but with a close-enough resemblance to the toys that you could still draw a connection between the two. The bio-mechanical nature of the Matoran Universe’s inhabitants would be emphasized- character models would have some flesh/muscle on them so that they wouldn’t look like straight-up robots. The island of Mata Nui would have a lot of attention put to its scenery, natural beauty, and varied climates. The movie would take us all over the island and to a lot of our favorite locations.

Like the art, the music would mostly take a cue or two from Nathan Furst’s OSTs for the original trilogy. It’d mostly be new music done in the style of the old, though if I got the rights to them I might sneak the Matoran theme, the main theme, and/or a variation of the MNOG beach chant in somewhere for some fanservice. Heck, if I could just straight-up hire Mr. Furst to compose the OST, that’d be wonderful!

I have no idea who I’d cast or how I’d go about casting. Maybe I’d try and get some of the original trilogy’s VA’s along with some better-known stars, I dunno. I just write (bad) stories; I don’t usually give much thought to finding folks to act 'em out.

The marketing would, again, appeal to whatever nostalgia the fans have for G1, while at the same time advertising Bionicle’s uniqueness to the new audience. I’d want to sell to them that this movie would be like little they’d seen before, and sell to the fans an authentic retelling of an old favorite of theirs. I’d want to take advantage of a variety of mediums- theatrical trailers, TV-spots, posters, happy meal toys (McToran 2.0?), and so on.

Naturally, I’d try and pursue an accompanying line of LEGO sets, of course! There’d be constraction figures of the movie’s main characters (the Toa Mata, Makuta, and so on), and then 2005/Ignition Trilogy-eqsue “playsets” recreating scenes from the movie. Everything would be done up to emulate the “look and feel” of G1, though, again, with some new elements so that it’s not a complete rehash.

As far as sequels go, I would probably tease the Bohrok for a possible “Bionicle 2”, along with some cryptic hints alluding to the coming of Takanuva for the fans to hunt for and speculate on. After that, who knows? Maybe I’d keep retelling G1’s story for as long as I get to keep making movies, or maybe I’d go all Rebuild of Evangelion and take the series in a completely new direction after a certain point. I’d probably want to avoid pursuing a full-on cinematic universe, though, whatever happens.

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Ok, I really think that this is a topic that should be discussed further, since I think a Bionicle Cinematic Universe really has potential.

To bring up a new point to the table, let’s not forget that there was a time when people thought a Marvel Cinematic Universe was impossible. Though it may sound absurd at this point, people just didn’t think superheroes like Thor or Captain America would work in live action movies at that time, and look where we are today.
I think the same can be said about Bionicle. It may seem impossible at this point to create an entire movie franchise based on a long dead toy series, but to quote somebody: (I don’t remember who said it)
"Everything is possible. The impossible just requires more time.

@ColdGoldLazarus, in your opinion, would this movie franchise actually happen someday?

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I think it definitely could, if Lego was willing to take the risk and invest into it properly, and if they were lucky enough for everything on the actual production of the movie to go right.

I do feel that Bionicle’s somewhat more out-there premise unfortunately limits appeal to a certain degree; the MCU had to work its way up to the more outlandish concepts from a relatively down-to-earth basis. That being said, now that the MCU has kinda opened the door to the general public being able to accept and run with more unusual ideas, that does kinda pave the way at least a little bit for something like Bionicle to be able to hit the ground running and be as removed from any common point of reference as it is and still get away with it. Even so, though, I think there is a certain inherent uphill battle to getting people interested, so it would be absolutely imperative to advertise it massively and make sure people want to go. (Also, opening at a time when there wouldn’t be much competition would be helpful)

I definitely think that it would make an amazing Cinematic Universe, but I do think that it would be important not to approach it like one; everyone trying to replicate the MCU’s success has so far failed in various ways; even the Godzilla Monsterverse movies have done things right for the most part compared to stuff like the Mummy and the DC movies, but King Of The Monsters still didn’t quite land like it should have. (And there are some interesting factors there that would be too tangential to get into, but it’s definitely an interesting circumstance there) I’m hoping Godzilla vs. Kong will do better next year, but I digress. Point is, most people hear the words “Cinematic Universe” and instantly sigh tiredly. So while it would definitely be good to keep in mind potential avenues for sequels and an overall plan, it would be best to take things slowly and one-at-a-time, make sure each movie is an enjoyable self-contained story instead of trying to set up a dozen sequels or spinoffs right off the bat. So basically, go into it with the hope for more, but a plan for only one, and do everything possible to make dang well sure that that one makes a proper impact.

This is all hypotheticals of course. To finally answer your original question, I definitely think that it could happen and could be pulled off, but given the current situation, I’m legitimately unsure if it’s any kind of likely or not. I would definitely love it to happen, but I think that’s dependent on a Lego that’s either confident or desperate enough to stake a huge risk on Bionicle again. Even if we set aside stuff like G2, I really don’t get the feeling right now that Lego’s in the right collective headspace to do such a thing. So if it’s going to happen, it probably won’t be anytime soon and would definitely require a massive change in circumstances first.

(But by golly, I hope the stars align and we can see this happen)

I don’t have a hard list or anything of dream casting, but I will say that Jason Momoa (from Aquaman) would make a great voice for Tahu.

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Too be fair, I think there might be a solution for that. LEGO has proven that they have little to no interest in Bionicle (and constraction is general) anymore, so if let’s say someone shows up at them and offers to purchase the Bionicle IP for let’s say, a few millions of dollars, I don’t see why they would refuse, since, let’s face it, they wouldn’t even care.
Why would they want to keep an IP that they want to forget that they even own when they could get quite a few money in exchange?

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That is very true. The other question though, is who else would be interested in purchasing the IP?

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Out of all the folks who have liked Bionicle when they were kids (or still do to this day) I can almost guarantee that at least someone will end up becoming a filmmaker at Hollywood or a Billionaire… and who knows? That person might as well be one of us!
Like I said before, nothing is impossible.

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I’m starting to think a movie might not be the best way to reveal an entire story year and that a big-budget streaming TV series might be best. I watched Mask of Light and Legends of Metru Nui and even though the latter was my childhood favorite, I think Mask of Light is the better film now if only because it didn’t have to adapt an entire year into a film - it only had to do the last half of it.

If I was making a film, I’d definitely start with the 2001 story. CGI is the right approach and motion capture would be ideal, albeit difficult. Don’t be afraid to make a long film, either - 2-2.25 hours would be a reasonable length.

The pitch I would present isn’t so much science fantasy as superhero fantasy. Basically combine the heroics of a superhero film with the lore of a fantasy world. The Toa are epic protectors and guardians with a ton of cool powers - show them off in cool ways! This unfortunately probably requires a PG-13, which LEGO would never allow, but it allows more creative freedom in the conflict, story, and battles. PG could maybe work for the early years, but by 2005 it is really stretching it. In many ways, BIONICLE is the Transformers of the 90s generation - there’s no reason it can’t be a big film, but it also has to be good, and the Quest for the Masks story kind of plays more like a video game than a film. Maybe simplify it to not be to find all the masks, but instead to find the golden masks only.

As a film, I’d definitely play up the epic fantasy elements. Build up the film with short films and ads. Try to appeal to that nostalgia bone while also providing the “cool” factor kids want. I’d also come up with a line of new sets to release - not a ton, but enough to interest collectors and LEGO fans. I’d also not be afraid to fix errors the team made early on. Avoid the Bohrok-Kal plot entirely, stretch the timespan out to a few years rather than a few months, have a real fight instead of a Kolhii match, etc.

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I don’t think that is necessarily the case. After all, they have a lot of licenses based on PG 13 movies.
Plus the fact that it would probably be developed independently from LEGO, although LEGO could contribute if they wanted to.

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Alright, here’s my pitch. The first movie would obviously be 2001. Now, I have a few options for visual style. To begin with, I would not be set accurate, regardless. I would never michael bay the designs, but possibly Travis Knight them, as someone said. I would take a lot of influence from official and fan made concept art, where the organics and cybernetics are clearly displayed. Later I’ll show some examples. Anyway, I would either want it to be 2D, and done by Genndy Tarkovski or the people from Avatar, or 3D, and in a style reminiscent of Into the Spiderverse. I think the vibrant, pop-art style of that could go REALLY well with Bionicle’s multi-colored, action packed shtick. (Also, I think it’d be absolutely perfect for the metru nui and voya nui years.) My last option is essentially have the entire movie in the style of the Bumblebee opening cybertron scene, but that seems most expensive.
Story-wise, obviously the whole 2001 deal of the Toa arriving, collecting the masks, and battling
For actors: I love Jeremy Irons as Vakama, and Tom Holland as Takua. I’d also want the guy that played Tahu in Mask of light to reprise his role, or Matt Lanter (Anakin from the Clone Wars). Lewa would be either Eljay, Mark Hammill, or the guy that plays spider man in the PS4 game. Kopaka would be Keeanu Reeves, Troy Baker, or Kevin Conroy. Onua, maybe Kary Payton. Pohatu would be Chris Hemsworth, and Gali would be Tessa Thompson or Daisy Ridley. Makuta? Liam Neeson or James Earl Jones. Samual L Jackson as some random matoran. Dee Dradley Baker as all if the Rahi/Nuju. Matau would be Peter B. Parker’s voice actor.
I’d obviously want it to be a franchise. I’d love to fully embrace the tones of each respective Bionicle year, with the series finally rounding out with Endgame levels of payoff and
Music-wise, I’m not sure, I don’t think I’m qualified enough to comment. Cryoshell should have some involvement, obviously.
The series would probably start PG, and escalate to PG-13 as the series progresses.
Some other casting ideas I had for later down the road: Ewan Mcgreggor as Lhikan, Tom Hiddleston/Matt Lanter as Nidhiki, if he isn’t Tahu. Hugh Jackson as Ackar. Arnold Schwarzenegger as Good Guy/Marendar. Scarlett Johannesson as Roodaka. Director Krennic’s actor for Sidorak. I could go on.

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While that sounds cool, I don’t think it would be taken seriously by adults if it were an animated movie. Animation isn’t very popular outside of children content, sadly.

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Depends on the location, because some areas of the world they would love to see the animation style.

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Well yeah, but the movie will be marketed mostly to the western hemisphere

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Scott McNeil, a living legend. Played Rattrap, Silverbolt and Waspinator in Beast Wars, among many other roles.

Yuri Lowenthal my dude, also known as that-guy-who-I-always-confused-with-Roger-Craig-Smith as a kid, and Ben Tennyson from Alien Force and onwards, among numerous other western cartoon, anime dub, and video game characters :stuck_out_tongue:

This is some quality voice talent, though… some of these choices seem a tad random, if you ask me :stuck_out_tongue:

But yes, I long for a return to traditional 2D animation, though it seems unlikely with a concept that’s already so risky to introduce a totally new audience to.

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Yeah, I was pretty sure thats who it was, but I didn’t want to spell it wrong.[quote=“TheMightyObsidianDude, post:39, topic:49716”]
This is some quality voice talent, though… some of these choices seem a tad random, if you ask me :stuck_out_tongue:
[/quote] [quote=“Sabretooth, post:35, topic:49716”]
Arnold Schwarzenegger as Good Guy/Marendar.
[/quote] I have no idea what you’re talking about.

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So here is my idea for the post-credit scenes from each movie:

2001: A brief shot of the bohrok nests, and then one suddenly cracks open, similar to the bohrok commercial from 2002.

2002: Some kraata are briefly shown crawling into a cave (Teridax’s Lair)

(I am skipping Metru Nui here, since those would be made later, and I am jumping directly to the Ignition Trilogy)

2003: A brief shot of Voya Nui is shown, and then we get a final shot, showcasing the Chamber of Life.

2006: The Mask Of Life is shown sinking in water, and a tentacle slowly creeping around, similar to the begging of the Barraki Commercial from 2007.

2007: A brief shot of Karda Nui, with some mysterious shadowy shapes are shown flying around (The Makuta)

2008: The Mask of Life crash lands on Bara Magna, and we get a brief shot of the Clicks approaching.

2009: Teridax is shown… and then he suddenly realizes that Mata Nui is still out there.

2010: Nothing to tease here, since this will be the last movie (unless you also do the Metru Nui saga).

What do you think? How would you do the Post-Credit Scenes?

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