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"Vikingdom" writer responds to criticism

Writer: Ezwan Mehzas


"Vikingdom" writer James Coyne.

30 Sep – Following the controversy caused by Dr. Karl E. H. Seigfried after he wrote an open letter to the "Vikingdom" team that pointed out its inaccuracies, which was then refuted and explained by director Yusry Abdul Halim in a video recently, James Coyne, the scriptwriter for the action fantasy film has also sought to write an open letter to address concerns raised by the Chicago-based Norse mythological expert.

In the open letter posted on the "Vikingdom" Facebook page, Coyne sought to appease Dr Seigfried's concerns as to why Thor was portrayed as the villain.

"The idea is that after centuries of defending mankind, he's angry at the spread of Christianity and the subversion of ancient Norse relics by Christians."


Dominic Purcell as the Viking King Eirick.

"His purpose (in the film) is to gather to him the faithful, reclaim those relics and to push back against the incursion of the One God. That these Gods fail, and fail at the hands of a mortal, who, by the way, is not a Christian, but a pagan, who knows these Gods, and believes in them, is part of the irony of Eirick's (the protagonist of the film) imaginary saga."

Coyne also stated that IMDb's synopsis failed to describe the film accurately but also admits that he has yet to see the final product and thus could only speak about the film from his intent while writing the film.

"The idea that this is based on myth is that the myths and characters of the story were starting points for what I created" he explains. He then compares his work to "Marvel's Thor" and asks why it has not yet received criticism for portraying Thor as an alien.


Thor (Conan Stevens) and Eirick (Dominic Purcell) clash.

Coyne states that he has done quite a lot of research citing a few books he had used for reference, and that he respects the Vikings and their history despite their infamy for the violence committed towards the population of Northern Europe.

The "Vikingdom" writer, in his letter, apologized for offending Dr Seigfried with "what was meant to be a fun, exciting saga." Coyne states that he tried to make Thor a well-rounded and realistic character and explains the constraints he and most other writers face when writing for films that leads to historical and intellectual inaccuracies.

Coyne states while the inaccuracies in the film allowed for open debate of "the role of the church, the Norse Pantheon, and history to a wider audience," what matters most is that the film had praised the qualities of the Norsemen and closed his letter with fervent apologies to the followers of Ásatrú.


Cinema Online, 30 September 2013

Related Movies:
Vikingdom (12 Sep 2013)

Dailymotion article page COMY

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