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pardon my while my mind wanders - Eric's House Of Ego — LiveJournal
April 22nd, 2013
11:15 am


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pardon my while my mind wanders
Mike Whitaker, bad man that he is, put me off on a tangent this morning. Go look at today's Movie Quote Quiz for the explanation.

What it led to was this idea … what if the Marx Brothers made a Flash Gordon movie. How would you cast it?

Flash Gordon
Dale Arden
Dr Hans Zarkov
Ming The Merciless
Prince Barin
Princess Aura
Prince Vultan

You would have to take certain … ahem … liberties with the story. I have several variations.

Of course Groucho is Flash Gordon, curling champion, on an airplane with Dale Arden, played by Thelma Todd (mostly because I would love to see her in some of the outfits that the original Dale wore in the first movie serial)

The airplane crashes and they end up outside of the laboratory of Dr Hans Zarkov, german scientist who, for reasons no one can quite explain, speaks with a bad italian accent.

Here is where my mind starts to wander. I see several possibilities for casting of Ming. The funniest is Margaret Dumont, who, of course, Groucho starts making insulting passes at all while doing the same towards Thelma Todd.

The second is Louis Calhern, in his slimiest Ambassador Trentino mode.

Or Sig Ruman, although I see a better part for him on down.

I think that Prince Barin has to be Harpo. Harpo in the Robin Hood-esque outfit would be marvelous. (with his own spin to it of course). His encounters with Groucho would be wonderful as well.

Esther Muir as Princess Aura, constantly scheming, constantly offended.

Edgar Kennedy as Prince Vultan because … really …

And Sig Ruman as Prince Thun

So, some of my ideas … how about a plot? Do we need one? Anyone have any better ideas on casting?

Another possible approach is that the Brothers are, collectively, the Flash Gordon character and you cast the rest with the movie regulars.

This was originally posted on Dreamwidth, after which it wandered out to various other sites. Feel free to reply where ever you want. I should still see it.

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(2 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:April 22nd, 2013 09:00 pm (UTC)
I disagree, in most of the Marx Brothers movies (as well as other black & white comedies by W.C. Fields, Abbot & Costello, Laurel & Hardy, etc.) the "romantic plot line" is moved to the background, and the comic relief characters are moved to the foreground. Like making a movie about Rosencrantz and Guildenstern.

In "A Night at the Opera" the story of two talented young opera singers hoping for love and success is almost incidental.

I personally see Groucho as Dr. Zarkov, Chico as Prince Barin, and Harpo as Prince Vultan.
[User Picture]
Date:April 22nd, 2013 09:18 pm (UTC)
In their best movies they were put into a fairly serious setting, and wreaked havoc with it. So they are put into the FG world, which could be taken fairly seriously, and they do just that.
Eric Coleman, Curmudgeon Powered by LiveJournal.com