The idea for '300: Rise Of An Empire' came from comic creator Frank Miller, who was working on a follow-up graphic novel to 300, titled 'Xerxes'.
This 'sequel' looks beyond the valiant 300 Spartan warriors in the first movie.
THIS is not Sparta. Well, it sort of is. There’s bits and pieces of Sparta, some of Athens and other parts of Greece, but for the most part, 300: Rise of An Empire (ROAE) is not exactly a sequel to 300.
“It’s not a straight sequel,” said Zack Snyder, co-producer of the movie and director of the hugely popular 300. “They kind of overlap, which we felt was more interesting than say, a zombie movie about 300 Spartans! Which is kind of a great idea too ...”
Speaking about the movie during an international press conference in Los Angeles, Snyder said that the initial idea for ROAE came from legendary comic creator Frank Miller, who was working on a follow-up graphic novel to 300 titled Xerxes (to be released this month as well).
“With 300, they all died and that was it,” he said. “Then Frank came to us and said he was interested in this other story about the Persian commander ... and the next thing we knew, we had a movie to make!”
Unfortunately, Snyder had already committed to making Superman movie Man Of Steel at the time, so he was unable to take on the directing reins himself.
Enter Noam Murro, a relatively unknown director best known for his acclaimed work with commercials, and whose only feature film in his resume was 2008 indie flick Smart People, starring Dennis Quaid, Sarah Jessica Parker and Ellen Page.
“I saw the first movie, and it was mind-boggling to see something like that. I think it really changed the way you see these movies made,” Murro said. “The question with this movie was how to take it forward, visually and story-wise.
“I was very fortunate to get to work with Zack. He’s a filmmaker who allows you freedom to create and expand as you want, and can still be a sounding board to whom I can come back to with questions. Zack understands where to let go and where to hold you back.”