It's rather eerie when your private wishes suddenly appear in the trades. I'm in the middle of reading Steven Pressfield's Gates of Fire, which made me long for another Greek epic. Now, Columbia is giving me one. According to Variety, the studio has optioned the Greek classic Anabasis, Xenophon's firsthand account of the journey of the Ten Thousand.

The tale of the Ten Thousand is, perhaps, lesser known to popular culture as the 300 Spartans (even if it did inspire The Warriors), but it's no less compelling. They were an army of Greek mercenaries hired by Cyrus the Younger to aid him in seizing the Persian throne from his brother, Artaxerxes II. His expedition proved to be a failure, and the Greeks found themselves stranded deep into enemy territory. Their Spartan general was killed, as were other senior officers, and it was up to Xenophon to try to encourage the ten thousand to make the journey home to Greece. If you're into history at all, read it, and marvel at the toughness of the ancients.

No director has been named, but the script is being penned by Robert Schenkkan, who was responsible for HBO's The Pacific. Production duties will be split by Jimmy Miller (known more for Will Ferrell comedies) and Robbie and Jonathan Stamp, who both know their historical epics. They were consultants on the outstanding Rome, that HBO series I'm constantly going on about. Apparently, just about everyone involved in this project is an ancient history nut, and is hoping this will be the first of many historical epics. Given its pedigree and primary source material, my expectations are high. Don't disappoint me, Columbia!
categories Movies, Cinematical