‘300: Rise of an Empire’ trailer teases vengeance, bloodshed, war

Jan. 20, 2014 | 11:50 a.m.

Lena Headey’s Queen Gorgo seeks vengeance for the events of “300” in a new trailer for “300: Rise of an Empire.”

Directed by TV commercial ace Noam Murro and produced by Zack Snyder, “Rise of an Empire” is not a sequel or a prequel but a free-standing tale set in the same world and taking place before, during and after the events of “300.”

The story is based on Frank Miller’s “Xerxes” (“300″ was based on Miller’s landmark graphic novel of the same name) and the historical Battle of Artemisium, a naval engagement concurrent with “300′s” battle at Thermopylae.

“If you took ‘300’ and you zoomed out, that’s what this movie is all about,” Murro said at Comic-Con International in San Diego last summer. “It takes place at about the same time as ‘300.’ It’s just bigger and it gives a whole bigger scale and scope as to what happened historically.”

The trailer, released Wednesday, shows Headey’s queen at what appears to be her husband’s (“300’s” Leonidas, played by Gerard Butler) funeral pyre, accompanied by new hero Themistocles (Sullivan Stapleton).

“Leonidas and the brave 300 are dead,” the tearful Gorgo says. “Have I not given enough for dream of a united Greece, Themistocles? A king. A husband.”

“Avenge him,” Themistocles replies, setting the scene for the events of “Rise of an Empire.”

The film once again pits the Greeks against the Persians, led by god-king Xerxes, the nefarious 9-foot-tall antagonist played by Rodrigo Santoro, and Artemisia I of Caria, a Persian naval commander played by Eva Green (“Casino Royale”). Artemisia is portrayed as a blood-thirsty warrior, eager for conquest.

“The ecstasy of steel and flesh, sweat and muscle and rage,” she says in the trailer. “War.”

And the Greeks seem to fear her, too.

“She has sold her soul to death himself,” Themistocles warns. “She’s going to bring all of hell with her.”

“She’s the toughest character I’ve ever played,” Green said at Comic-Con. “It’s always been a fantasy for me to play a character who’s a woman with swords. She’s so ballsy, she’s so brave, independent, she’s fearless, ruthless. I call her kind of a ruthless Joan of Arc.”

Eva Green in "300: Rise of an Empire." (Legendary Pictures / Warner Bros.)

Eva Green in “300: Rise of an Empire.” (Legendary Pictures / Warner Bros.)

The trailer shows brutal and bloody action scenes, set to Black Sabbath’s “War Pigs,”as Artemisia and Themistocles wage naval warfare.

The film also stars Jack O’Connell as Calisto, Hans Matheson as Aesyklos, Callan Mulvey as Scyllias, David Wenham as Dilios, Andrew Tiernan as Ephialtes, Igal Naor as King Darius and Andrew Pleavin as Daxos.

Producer Snyder, of course, is the director of “Man of Steel,” his first major hit since “300.” In between came “Watchmen,”  “Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole” and “Sucker Punch.” Snyder is also directing the upcoming untitled Batman/Superman film.

“300″ was a box-office hit, despite controversy surrounding the portrayal of Xerxes and his Persian army as an effete villain and a savage horde; the Iranian Academy of the Arts filed a formal complaint through the United Nations, denouncing the film’s take on Iran’s history.

“Empire” is slated to hit theaters March 7. Click through the gallery above for scenes from the first “300.”

– Noelene Clark | @NoeleneClark | Google+


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5 Responses to ‘300: Rise of an Empire’ trailer teases vengeance, bloodshed, war

  1. Sophie says:

    I'm rooting for the "bad guys." These stupid movies are for the sheeple.

  2. Ramon Sandoval says:

    I love 300 it’s my favoret movie and I can’t wait to see an buy 300 Rise of an Empire, I hope you make more movies.

  3. zigman12 says:

    Can't wait to see this movie on IMAX. This should be at least a 2 hour movie with all this action.

  4. Rohinton Irani says:

    Ah Yes….Another Trailer from 300 : Rise of MORE LIES !

    I mean with Every Trailer,my Blood keeps BOILING !

    Oh well….at least Persepolis LOOKS Good ! at 1:21.
    ( even though the Gate of All Nations,is to Far apart. )The Winged Bull Statues.

    Oh,and when you see that Tidal Wave of BLOOD ! at 2:06.


    That was shed go NO Good REASON at all !.

    I mean all YOU Greeks had to do was Mind your Own Buisness !

    And stay on your side of the Aegean Sea !

    But you had to cross the Aegean,go into Ionia Provence, of The Persian Empire,and Start Stiring up Trouble !

    Hey Zack Snyder and Frank Miller….I wonder IF in this Sequel,You guys WILL tell that HISTORICAL FACT !

    That IT WAS The GREEKS ! not The PERSIANS who Started The War !

    What's that ? Zack and Frank ….Oh you have Already said that the First 300 WAS NOT HISTORICALLY ACCURATE !

    I mean the First 300 Caught me off guard !….I assumed that Heckel & Jeckel would acutally SHOW The HISTORICAL Conflict bettween Persia and Greece !

    So I'm prepared for THIS LIE !

    • Tim says:

      What are you talking about? Greeks minding their own business? They were minding their own business when the Persians greedily invaded these Ionain Greek cities along the coast. After a while the Greeks wanted their independence and freedom back so they rebelled against the Persians but lost.

      The Persians were so upset at this rebellion and of Athens assistance to the rebellion that the Persions wanted to destroy Greece.

      So, it was, in fact, the Persians who started the whole war. Their greed and inability to mind their own business that led to a conflict which resulted in Persia eventually being overtaken by Alexander the Greek.

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