GHOST RIDER 2 Treament Rejected for Being "Too Violent"
Read all twenty-three pages of Todd Farmer & Patrick Lussier's treatment for Ghost Rider that was passed over for David S. Goyer's Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance.
Todd Farmer and Patrick Lussier over the years have teamed up multiple times, collaborating on such films as; My Bloody Valentine, Halloween III, and Nicolas Cage's Drive Angry.
Todd Farmer has headed to his blog and revealed some intriguing information about his, and Patrick's failed attempt to nab Ghost Rider 2. He posted a picture of his prized Ghost Rider comic books to show that he is a huge fan of the character and has a passion for the material.
During one of our many meetings, De Luca, who had produced Ghost Rider, suggested we come up with a pitch for Ghost Rider 2. We said yes with much enthusiasm. So Mike set a meeting with Avi Arad that we might meet and discuss the franchise. And we had a blast. We met Avi and his son Ari (who sat with me and Tom Jane during the My Bloody Valentine premiere). We talked superheroes and what made Ghost Rider different. We talked through what Vilains we could legally draw from. It was a perfect meeting.
Patrick and I returned to the ghostcave and worked our magic. We decided to not only create a pitch but since there were so many entities involved (Avi, Marvel, Sony and De Luca) we would create a document we could leave behind. A doc that would represent our story, our characters and our tone. And that’s what we did.
When we returned we were pumped. We had nailed it. It may seem arrogant to say that but DUH. Isn’t that the point? Why would you ever go back if you didn’t think you nailed it? During the initial chit chat I said something along the lines of, “We know there are several entities involved here but we think we’ve found a story that fulfills everyone’s concerns.” Avi then informed me that there was only one entity that mattered. Everyone laughed. I gulped.
And the pitch was fun! We knew De Luca dug it. Later we heard that Sony loved it. But in the end Avi passed. He said it was too violent.
GHOST RIDER 2: RIDERS ON THE STORM
Treatment by Todd Farmer & Patrick Lussier
Call it a preamble. Likely via Voice Over, we hear Johnny Blaze encapsulate becoming the Ghost Rider... what his purpose is, and the rules of his supernatural alter-ego: Changing in the presence of supernatural evil, or when innocent blood is spilled nearby. Blaze wasn't the first of his kind but he was the first to spit in the face of the devil. He declined the role of the Devil's bounty hunter. Rather than terrorize the innocent, Blaze chose instead to use his supernatural evil to slay those already in Satan's service. Sound easy? Sound like hero's work? Did to Blaze too... but walking with evil takes its toll... and sooner or later it gets hard to tell the difference from the evil out there and the evil inside your own soul...
MEET JOHNNY BLAZE... drunk and staggering... a shadow of what he once was...tormented by his years of being Ghost Rider. He stares at himself in the bathroom mirror of a shitty bar. He holds up his hand... flames lick out from the fingers as he presses it on the reflective glass. It heats, distorts, cracks - Blaze's reflection fragments -- pieces of Johnny, pieces of Ghost Rider. Finally he SMASHES his face into the mirror. Staggers back, drops to the filthy floor. Door swings open - Meet DEACON GRAY (think Sean Bean), once entered the priesthood but slugged a Bishop for eying an altar boy. He's rugged, righteous and vicious with scars from brow to jawbone. He slaps Blaze across the face. Coffee. Lots of it. Deacon forces Blaze to drink it. Sobering him some. "You good enough to ride?" asks Deacon. Blaze's Harley (the Easy Rider bike from the first film) kicks to life. It too is a mess. No longer clean or pristine, it's amazing it runs at all. It's as tarnished as Blaze is himself. Deacon glides up next to him on his own bike. The two take off. American highway through the Rockies. Mountainous terrain, tunnels and open road. Blaze finally slows...Deacon next to him. We intercut their conversation.
Deacon: "Blaze, you turned your back on everything you had goin for you. Shit, you had achieved the dream. And now you can barely keep your head on straight."
Blaze: "That ain't the half of it."
Deacon: "This thing inside you... if it ain't gonna leave on its own then you gotta make peace with it. Cause you're letting it kill you."
Blaze: "I'd be okay with it killin' me. Hell, I'd welcome it. But it doesn't want me dead. Itjust wants out. So I gotta keep the road movin' beneath me..."
Deacon: "Yeah? That never seems to stop you from turnin.' You look on it like it's hell itself... but think of the evil that you smite... Blaze, that's a good thing."
Blaze: "In the beginning. Thought if I was pure of heart, true to myself, that I could control it. But now... seems like the worst kind of nightmare keeps finding me. Like I'm not a hunter of evil...I'm a goddamn magnet for it. I swear to you brother, if we come to a crossroads and you want a peaceful day, just don't follow me. Because my path's gonna be full of pain and suffering. Makes me think there's a reason. Like my jumping ship has thrown the balance out of whack. Like I'm just supposed to give in."
Deacon: "To what? The Dark side? Blaze. You do that. And I will personally send you back to hell myself. That is a promise."
Johnny and Deacon lock eyes. Then Johnny extends his hand. "I'll take you at your word. And hold you to it." Deacon shakes, the deal sealed. Blaze and Deacon race through the mountainous road. Head through one tunnel, then emerge from another. Both screech their bikes to a halt.
Click Here to Read the Full Treatment for GHOST RIDER 2: Riders On The Storm
Ghost Rider : Spirit of Vengeance is directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor's starring Nicolas Cage, Ciaran Hinds, Violante Placido, Idris Elba, and Johnny Whitworth. Ghost Rider hits theaters February 22, 2012.
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