We’re still a few months away from the premiere of “Conan The Barbarian,” but that doesn’t mean Marcus Nispel’s reboot of the popular movie franchise based on Robert E. Howard’s sword-swinging barbarian isn’t on our minds around MTV Splash Page HQ.
As part of our Summer Movie Preview Week, we chatted up “Conan the Barbarian” star Jason Momoa to find out how he prepped for the role and whether he’s nervous about living up to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s famous portrayal of the character.
“I went to the source material,” said Momoa of how he readied himself for the role. “I went to Robert E. Howard. I’ve never played a role that’s this rich. So much material. I was a big comic book fan.”
For Momoa, the now-iconic Frank Frazetta paintings provided one of his first introductions to the famous barbarian.
“Both my parents were painters,” he said. “You look at those paintings and you don’t need to read a story. You just know, that dude is bad.”
However, Momoa was quick to admit that he has yet to watch the “Conan” movies starring Schwarzenegger — and he doesn’t plan to do so until after he’s seen his own performance.
“I haven’t actually seen the Arnold stuff,” he confessed. “I’m excited to see it. I was three years old when it came out…I can’t wait to see it. I want to see mine and then I’m going to watch that one, back to back.”
“I’ve never played a role that was played by someone else,” he continued. “As an actor, to build the character I wanted to use my imagination and be creative and use my own interpretation.”
As for the film itself, Momoa offered his own take on where the new “conan The Barbarian” falls in the character’s ever-growing mythology.
“It kind of is an origin story,” he explained. “It’s rebuilding and rebooting the franchise…It starts with his birth, what happened to his family, what happened to his father—obviously his father is killed—and him going into the pirating and the thieving and wandering and being the degenerate that he is and then usurping a throne and finding out who killed his father. It’s a revenge story, with a little bit a love in there.”
“Conan the Barbarian” hits theaters August 19.
Keep it locked to MTV Splash Page all week for more exclusive interviews, news, video, and images from this year’s most-anticipated movies!