Fire and Ice (1983 film)

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Fire and Ice
Fire and Ice 1983 poster.png
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Ralph Bakshi
Produced by Ralph Bakshi
Frank Frazetta
Written by Gerry Conway
Roy Thomas
Starring Susan Tyrrell
Maggie Roswell
William Ostrander
Stephen Mendel
Steve Sandor
Music by William Kraft
Cinematography Francis Grumman
Edited by A. David Marshall
Production
company
Distributed by 20th Century Fox (Theatrical)
Release dates
  • August 26, 1983 (1983-08-26)
Running time 81 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $1.2 million
Box office $760,883

Fire and Ice is a 1983 American animated adventure-fantasy film directed by Ralph Bakshi. The film, a collaboration between Bakshi and Frank Frazetta, was distributed by 20th Century Fox, which also distributed Bakshi's 1977 release, Wizards.[1] The animated feature, based on characters Bakshi and Frazetta co-created, was made using the process of rotoscoping, in which scenes were shot in live action and then traced onto animation cels.

The screenplay was written by Gerry Conway and Roy Thomas, both of whom had written Conan stories for Marvel Comics. Background painter was James Gurney, the author and artist of the Dinotopia illustrated novels. Thomas Kinkade also worked on the backgrounds to various scenes.

Plot[edit]

From their stronghold in Icepeak, the evil Queen Juliana (Susan Tyrrell) and her son, Nekron (Stephen Mendel), send forth a wave of glaciers, forcing humanity to retreat south towards the equator. Nekron sends a delegation to King Jarol (Leo Gordon) in Firekeep to request his surrender, but this is a ruse orchestrated by Queen Juliana for Nekron’s sub-humans to kidnap Jarol’s daughter, the barefoot, microkini-wearing Princess Teegra (Cynthia Leake); Queen Juliana feels that Nekron should take a bride to produce an heir.

But Teegra makes an escape and comes upon Larn, the only survivor of a village razed by glaciers, who offers to escort her back to Firekeep. As Teegra is recaptured, Larn teams with the mysterious Darkwolf (Steve Sandor) to save Teegra and then travel to Icepeak to stop Juliana. Darkwolf faces Nekron and kills him as Icepeak succumbs to lava released by King Jarol and is destroyed.

The film finishes with Larn about to kill a beaten sub-human until Teegra stops him saying that "it's over" and embraces him. Darkwolf is seen atop a cliff; he watches the pair, smiles and then disappears. Teegra and Larn kiss as the credits roll.

Cast[edit]

Performers[edit]

  • Randy Norton – Larn
  • Cynthia Leake – Teegra
  • Steve Sandor – Darkwolf
  • Sean Hannon – Nekron
  • Leo Gordon – Jarol
  • William Ostrander – Taro
  • Eileen O'Neill – Juliana
  • Elizabeth Lloyd Shaw – Roleil
  • Micky Morton – Otwa
  • Tamarah Park – Tutor
  • Big Yank – Monga
  • Greg Wayne Elam – Pako

Voice cast[edit]

Production[edit]

By 1982, fantasy films had proven to be considerably successful at the box office, including The Beastmaster and Conan the Barbarian, and Bakshi had a desire to work with long-time friend and fantasy illustrator Frank Frazetta.[2] Bakshi received $1.2 million to finance Fire and Ice from some of the same investors as American Pop, and 20th Century Fox agreed to distribute the film based upon the financial longevity of Wizards.[2]

Because Fire and Ice was the most action-oriented story Bakshi had directed up until that point, rotoscoping was again used, and the realism of the animation and design replicated Frazetta's artwork.[2] Bakshi and Frazetta were heavily involved in the production of the live-action sequences, from casting sessions to the final shoot.[2] The film's crew included background artists James Gurney and Thomas Kinkade, layout artist Peter Chung, and established Bakshi Productions artists Sparey, Steven E. Gordon, Bell and Banks.[2] Chung strongly admired Bakshi and Frazetta's work, and animated his sequences on the film while simultaneously working for The Walt Disney Company.[2]

Reception[edit]

Andrew Leal wrote, "The plot is standard [...] recalling nothing so much as a more graphic episode of Filmation's He-Man series. [...] Fire and Ice essentially stands as a footnote to the spate of barbarian films that followed in the wake of Arnold Schwarzenegger's appearance as Conan."[3]

Home video release[edit]

The film was released on VHS twice. First by RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video in 1983 and by GoodTimes Home Video in 1988. In 2005, it was released on DVD by Blue Underground Entertainment on a limited edition two-disc set, paired with the documentary Frazetta: Painting With Fire, about the film's co-creator and producer, Frank Frazetta.[4] The company later released the film on Blu-ray in 2008.

Legacy[edit]

In 2003, the Online Film Critics Society ranked the film as the 99th greatest animated film of all time.[5]

In 2010, Robert Rodriguez announced that he would direct a live-action remake of the film.[6] Bakshi stated that he did not want any involvement with the film, but he agreed to license the rights to Rodriguez.[7] The deal closed shortly after Frazetta's death.[6]

Remake[edit]

On December 18, 2014 Sony Pictures Entertainment acquired the filming rights to the live-action remake version of the 1983 animated film Fire and Ice that will be directed by Robert Rodriguez.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ J.C. Maçek III (August 2, 2012). "'American Pop'... Matters: Ron Thompson, the Illustrated Man Unsung". PopMatters. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f Gibson, Jon M.; McDonnell, Chris (2008). "Fire and Ice". Unfiltered: The Complete Ralph Bakshi. Universe Publishing. pp. 192; 196. ISBN 0-7893-1684-6. 
  3. ^ Beck, Jerry; Martin Goodman, Andrew Leal, W. R. Miller, Fred Patten (2005). "Fire and Ice". The Animated Movie Guide. Chicago Review Press. p. 84. ISBN 978-1-55652-591-9. 
  4. ^ "Fire And Ice (2-Disc Limited Edition)". Blue Underground. Retrieved March 25, 2007. 
  5. ^ "Top 100 Animated Features of All Time". Online Film Critics Society. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  6. ^ a b Knowles, Harry (May 19, 2010). "A family friendly Machete? What do you mean no race war? & A secret Frazetta project?? Exclusive Robert Rodriguez interview!!". Ain't It Cool News. Retrieved May 20, 2010. 
  7. ^ Ashby, Devon (March 14, 2012). "The God's Truth: An Interview With Ralph Bakshi (Part 2)". Crave Online. Retrieved July 8, 2012. 
  8. ^ Fleming, Mike (December 18, 2014). "Sony Pictures Acquires Robert Rodriguez & His Frank Franzetta Homage 'Fire And Ice'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 

External links[edit]