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What Joe Manganiello’s Possible Dragonlance Movie Might Contain

What Joe Manganiello’s Possible Dragonlance Movie Might Contain

It’s recently come to light that actor Joe Manganiello has been coauthoring a script for a Dungeons & Dragons movie. Speaking on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, he said that he’d even met with Wizards of the Coast to talk about the project. This was at first confusing news, since it’s known that a D&D film is already in the works after a prolonged legal battle pertaining to the game’s film rights.

However Manganiello soon tweeted out a picture of a script draft, indicating that the prospective movie would be an adaption of Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman’s beloved Dragon’s of Autumn Twilight.


That’s the first book in the original Dragonlance trilogy, a setting that’s seen a lot of book sales over the decades since its 1984 debut. For many of us, it’s a much-loved place filled with characters we grew up with. That first novel even got it’s own animated film, featuring  Kiefer Sutherland, Lucy Lawless, and Michael Rosenbaum in 2008; but it apparently didn’t see enough sales to merit development of the rest of the trilogy.

Obviously this is in pretty early stages, so everything is speculation at this point. However, if you’re a fan of Dragonlance it’s hard not to get excited at the prospect of a set of franchise movies. If Hollywood were down for it we could see not only an Autumn Twilight movie, but a full Chronicles trilogy, and maybe even a Legends trilogy filling out the story line. That’s a lot of movies, but Dragonlance honestly makes sense as a source of scripts. It’s a well-known setting within the context of D&D books, it has a cast of iconic characters, and it has a well-developed episodic plotline.

There’s a lot of fan speculation on Twitter that Joe Manganiello might be interested in taking the role of Caramon for himself. He certainly looks the muscle-y part, judging by his appearance in the Magic Mike movies, and this would allow him to play a lead in both a Chronicles and a Legends series if the films kept getting made far into the future.

For those of us willing to travel down this flight of fancy, why not get excited? In fact, that picture Manganiello tweeted out can be zoomed in and enhanced, to use “technical” terms, and we can make out some of the text of the first page of the draft. Here it is with colors reversed and posterized:

dragons of autumn4

Though it’s hard to read, you can make out a few phrases here and there: “OLD MAN (V.O.)”, “of precious metals”, “battle of dragons”, “evil dragons”, etc.

Interestingly it’s pretty easy to make out the words “VINGAARD KEEP”. That’s a location in Solamnia within the setting. It was once the capital of that kingdom, and the site of activity involving the original dragon lances according to Dragonlance setting lore. Seems like what we might be seeing here is an introductory voice over by an old man (possibly Fizban the Fabulous) describing the chromatic and metallic dragons, the invention of the dragon lances, and the earlier wars involving the legendary Huma.

Again, all this is speculation, but isn’t this a great start? Are you excited by the possibility of seeing Raistlin, Tasslehoff, and Sturm’s mustache on the big screen? Or are you more interested in a new setting and cast of characters, made for the more mainline D&D movie? Let us know in the comments.

Featured image credit: Wizards of the Coast

Image Credit: Ryan Chaddock

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