Troy (film)

Troy (film)

Infobox Film
name = Troy

caption = Troy Theatrical Poster
director = Wolfgang Petersen
producer = Wolfgang Petersen
Diana Rathbun
Colin Wilson
Plan B
writer = David Benioff
starring = Brad Pitt
Eric Bana
Orlando Bloom
Brian Cox
Sean Bean
Peter O'Toole
Diane Kruger
music = James Horner
cinematography = Roger Pratt
editing = Peter Honess
distributor = Warner Bros.
released = May 14, 2004
runtime = 162 Min
196 Min
Director's Cut
language = English
budget = $180 million USD
imdb_id = 0332452
amg_id = 1:286522
website =

"Troy" is an epic movie released on May 14, 2004 concerning the Trojan War. It is loosely based on Homer's "Iliad", but includes material from Virgil's "Aeneid" and other sources, and frequently diverges from myth. The film has the following cast of actors prominent at the time of its release: Brad Pitt as Achilles, Eric Bana as Hector, Orlando Bloom as Paris, Diane Kruger as Helen, Brian Cox as Agamemnon, Sean Bean as Odysseus, Rose Byrne as Briseis, Garrett Hedlund as Patroclus, Peter O'Toole as Priam, Brendan Gleeson as Menelaus, and Tyler Mane as Ajax. "Troy" was directed by Wolfgang Petersen and written by David Benioff. It received an Oscar nomination for its costume design.


Agamemnon of Mycenae and his army are in Thessaly, Greece, looking to expand his military might and empire. His army prepares to engage in combat against a host of soldiers under the Thessalonian king, Triopas. Rather than suffer great losses, Triopas agrees to Agamemnon's proposal to settle the matter in the traditional way - through a decisive match between the heroes of the opposing armies. Achilles is summoned by Agamemnon, and arrives after being woken by a messenger boy. He easily kills the greatest and most accomplished warrior of Thessaly, Boagrius. Accepting defeat, Triopas presents Achilles with a scepter as a token for his king. Achilles however refuses, saying "He's not my king."

In Sparta, Prince Hector and his young brother Paris negotiate an end to the war between the outlying kingdom of Troy and Sparta. On the last day of a week long peace festival, Paris manages to smuggle his love Helen back to Troy with him. Menelaus, Helen's husband, vows revenge on Paris. Meanwhile, Agamemnon the brother of Menelaus, who had for years harbored plans for conquering Troy, decides to use his brother's situation as an excuse to invade. He is advised by his general Nestor, to call upon Achilles to fight for the Greeks. This is in order to ensure they can rally enough troops to the cause. Agamemnon knows that with Troy under his control, he would have complete control over the Aegean.

When they arrive in Troy, Hector, Paris and Helen are warmly welcomed and received by their father King Priam. He says nothing of his younger son's love for Helen. Shortly afterwards, Hector tries to urge his father to put Helen on a ship back to Sparta, in order to avoid a colossal war between Troy and Agamemnon (who now controls all of Greece). Priam refuses, choosing instead to put his faith in his high priests and their interpretation of how Apollo would react, as well as his firm belief that Paris is truly in love with Helen.

Agamemnon and the Greeks amass the largest naval force ever known to man - 1000 ships each containing 50 men - and set sail for Troy. Agamemnon sends Odysseus to convince Achilles to join, but he refuses as he utterly despises Agamemnon and only fights for personal glory, not the power of others. Odysseus hints that the warriors who would fight in this war shall receive immortality in history, but he still refuses. Later, Thetis, Achilles' mother, tells Achilles of the prophecy she had learned of even before he was born, which foretold that if Achilles does not go to the war, he will find peace, love and a family of his own, but he will eventually be forgotten as time passed. But if he chooses to go to Troy, his name would become immortal, at the cost of his life. Achilles, unable to resist such fame and glory, heads for Troy.

The Greeks land at Troy and take control of the beach on the first day of the war. Achilles and the Myrmidons are able to kill many Trojans but also desecrate the Trojan temple of Apollo, slaying the unarmed priests that reside there. Briseis, a member of the Trojan royal family who has chosen to dedicate her life to service to the gods, is captured and taken as a prize by Achilles. However, he treats her with kindness, which makes her initially cautious. In the course of the battle within the temple, Achilles and Hector meet but do not fight. Hector is outnumbered but allowed to leave.

After the battle, Achilles is annoyed that, although he and his Myrmidons spearheaded the battle, the other kings who serve Agamemnon pay him tribute in honor of Agamemnon's great victory. Offended by Achilles' disrespectful and disobedient attitude, Agamemnon takes Briseis from him. Only Briseis' contemptuous pleas stop Achilles from slaughtering Agamemnon and his men, and Agamemnon taunts him for listening to a mere slave girl. Achilles leaves in a rage, but promises Agamemnon he will see him dead before his own life ends.

When the Greek army marches upon Troy, Achilles refuses to fight or to allow the Myrmidons to fight until Agamemnon regrets belittling him. Instead Achilles and his Myrmidons watch the events from a distance, Achilles pacing back and forth in anger at Agamemnon's mistakes. With the Trojan army beneath the walls of Troy and the Greek army surrounding it, Paris, feeling guilt for having brought the threat of war upon Troy, challenges Menelaus to a duel to settle things. Menelaus agrees, knowing he is the better warrior. Agamemnon then decides he will attack afterwards anyway, regardless of the outcome. Paris, severely outmatched, is easily defeated. Terrified of dying, he crawls back to Hector's feet. Menelaus approaches and moves to finish Paris, but Hector steps in to protect his brother and kills Menelaus. A shocked and distraught Agamemnon orders his army to charge the Trojans. During the battle, Ajax leads the fight and is unstoppable while he causes mayhem with a great hammer of war. Hector, recognizing the threat, faces Ajax and they fight. At first Ajax almost kills Hector, who can only shelter behind his shield as it is smashed to pieces. Hector only just manages to kill Ajax despite being almost throttled to death by him. The increasingly energized Trojans press their attack against the uncoordinated Greeks. The Greeks move too close to the walls and Trojan archers rain arrows down on them, killing Greek soldiers by the hundreds. Without Ajax or Achilles and his Myrmidons, and with the Trojan archers upon the walls of Troy free to shower arrows upon the Greeks, the battle quickly turns against them. With command of the battle lost, Agamemnon grudgingly bows to Odysseus's pleas to withdraw and the Greeks retreat to the beach.

Briseis is given to some men by the king after their poor performance in battle as a "morale booster". Before she can be branded and raped, Achilles arrives in the nick of time to save her. Killing her assailants and carrying her back to his tent. Later that night, as Achilles sleeps, Briseis contemplates killing him and kneels beside him to press a knife to his throat. He wakes but only challenges her to do it and says that dying now isn't so different than dying fifty years from now, causing her to hesitate at his calmness in the face of death. As she hesitates, Achilles suddenly pulls her down to him and rolls over so she is pinned beneath him. He then kisses her passionately and as she drops the knife, begins to make love to her. The next evening, the two lie in bed and Achilles tells her he is sailing in the morning, having been convinced that perhaps the life of an infamous warrior is not all for him. She is slightly skeptical and asks him if he could really leave it all behind, inducing him to ask if she could bring herself to leave Troy.

A debate takes place within the Trojan palace. The priests say that the gods are on their side and they should attack the Greeks while they are weak. Hector points out that the Myrmidons did not fight and that the Greeks are dispirited. If they attack, it might be the thing to roust and unify the Greeks. He argues for leaving them alone and perhaps they will leave on their own accord. Priam disregards this and goes with the assurances of his priests, and a reluctant Hector leads them.

The Trojans attack the Greek camp at dawn. As the Greeks appear to be on the verge of defeat, Achilles appears and the Myrmidons join the battle. He brings courage to the Greeks, and eventually fights man-to-man against Hector, until his throat is cut. This energizes the Trojans and dismays the Greeks, until Hector pulls Achilles' helmet off and finds it is Patroclus. Achilles' cousin. Grieved at having slain a boy so young, Hector gives him a killing blow out of mercy. Odysseus informs Hector of the boy's identity and they agree to cease hostilities for the day. Achilles, who had slept through the battle, is informed by the Myrmidons of his cousin's death. They had also mistaken Patroclus for Achilles. Consumed by grief and rage, Achilles beats Eudorus and walks toward the beach. A distraught Achilles leads the ceremony, complete with funeral pyre, while a satisfied Agamemnon tells Odysseus "That boy just saved this war."

The next day, Achilles approaches the gates of Troy and demands Hector come out and face him. Hector stops the city's archers from opening fire and goes down to face Achilles. Hector requests a pact that the loser be given proper funeral rites by the winner. Achilles denies him, saying that "There are no pacts between lions and men". The two fight bravely and arduously. Hector, though he is a great warrior in his own right, is outclassed by the enraged Achilles, who duly kills him. Achilles then ties Hector's body to the back of his chariot and drags it along the dirt. That night King Priam, aided by the dark, goes to the Greek army's camp to get Hector's body back. After an emotional and mortifying talk given to him by Priam, Achilles breaks down into tears near Hector's slain body. He lets Priam take Hector's body back, promising him that no Greek will attack them on the way back. Achilles lets Priam take Briseis back as well, and gives her the shell necklace Thetis made for him. He assures Priam that the Greeks will honor Prince Hector's death, and that no Greek will attack Troy for 12 days. This temporary ceasefire angers Agamemnon who sees it as golden opportunity to attack Troy while they are leaderless.

During the 12 days that Troy mourns Hector's death, the Greeks plan to enter the city using a hollowed-out wooden horse, devised by Odysseus. The Greeks leave the horse at the location of their camp, then withdraw to the beach hiding in their ships behind a nearby island. Paris warns Priam about the horse and says they should burn it to the ground, but Priam neglects his warning, blinded by the priests' talk of the horse being a "peace offering by the Greeks" in order to appease the Sun-God Apollo for the desecration of his temple by Achilles earlier. Assuming victory, the Trojans take the horse into the city and celebrate. A Trojan scout sees the Greeks still at the bay but gets killed by an archer. The Trojans celebrate their victory and the whole of Troy is in drunken stupor when several Greeks, hidden inside the horse, launch a surprise attack and open the gates of Troy to allow the Greek army inside the city walls. Helen and Andromeche are able to gather a large amount of women and children and other Trojans who take the secret path Hector showed to Andromeche. Paris refuses to leave and hands the sword of Troy to Aeneas, quoting his father by telling Aeneas that "So long the sword of Troy remains in the hands of a Trojan, our people have a future". Priam yells to the Greeks who break statues in the temple, "Have you no honor?" but before he can act, he is killed by Agamemnon. In the Director's Cut before Priam dies he asks Agamemnon to spare the innocent, but Agamemnon refuses saying "No one's innocent."

Achilles frantically searches for Briseis, who is at the shrine of Apollo being threatened by Agamemnon. She kills him with a concealed knife, and is saved by Achilles from being stabbed to death by Agamemnon's guards when Achilles arrives. Paris manages to find Achilles and shoots an arrow that goes straight through Achilles' fatal weakness, his heel. Crippled, he is then hit in the chest by several more arrows, but is able to remove them. Though the wound to his ankle proves decisive. As she cries, Achilles tells Briseis, "You gave me peace in a lifetime of war," and urges her to leave the city with Paris, though she initially refuses to. Tearfully, Briseis lets Paris pull her up and lead her up the steps as they run towards the secret passageway and leave Achilles there. After watching them leave, he collapses with the one arrow remaining in his heel.

After a last disorganized and futile attempt by surviving Trojan soldiers to repel the invaders, the battle ends and the Greeks storm the inner palace only to find that Achilles has died just a few moments earlier. They perform the funeral rituals for him the next morning. Odysseus delivers the final words, "If they ever tell my story, let them say that I walked with giants. Men rise and fall like the winter wheat, but these names will never die. Let them say that I lived in the time of Hector, tamer of horses. Let them say I lived in the time of Achilles...."

Finance and Reaction

When the film was completed, total production costs were approximately $180,000,000. This makes "Troy" one of the most expensive films made in modern cinema. Not adjusted for inflation, it is number 13 on the all time list of most expensive films and number 16 when adjusted for inflation.

"Troy" screenings have earned $133 million (US$133,378,256) in the United States."Troy" (film data), Box Office Mojo, 2006,, webpage: [ BOMojo-Troy] .] Having cost $180 million to make, the film was a disappointment in the US. Many critics anticipated that it would flop as "Troy" barely missed the $50 million mark on its opening US weekend and wrote off the film. "Troy" was among the several historical epics released in 2004 that disappointed, such as "Alexander", "The Alamo" and "King Arthur", although it fared better than those films.

However, "Troy" did extremely well at the international box office financial success, making more than 73% of its revenues outside of the U.S. Eventually "Troy" made over US$497 million dollars worldwide, placing it in the #60 spot of top box office hits of all time. This places the film 17 spots above "Gladiator" (#77) and approximately 20 spots above "300" (#80) ["Gladiator" (film data), Box Office Mojo, 2001/2006,, webpage: [ BOMojo-Gladiator] .] in the all-time worldwide box office.

"Troy" met mixed reactions by reviewers. Rotten Tomatoes gave it a Tomatometer rating of 55% from a base of 214 reviews while Yahoo! Movies gave it a critic rating of "B-" (although that was based on 15 Critical Reviews). Roger Ebert, who disliked what he saw as an unfaithful adaptation of the "Iliad", gave it two stars out of four [ [ Troy :: :: Reviews ] ] Ebert claimed that "Troy" "sidesteps the existence of the Greek gods, turns its heroes into action movie clichés and demonstrates that we're getting tired of computer-generated armies."

Box office totals

*Budget - $180,000,000
*Marketing cost - $50,000,000
*Opening Weekend Gross (Domestic) - $46,865,412
*Total Domestic Grosses - $133,378,256
*Total Overseas Grosses - $364,031,596
*Total Worldwide Grosses - $497,378,256



Composer Gabriel Yared originally worked on the score for Troy for over a year, having been hired by the director, Wolfgang Petersen.

Yared wrote and recorded his score and Tanja Tzarovska provided vocals on various portions of the music, as she later would on composer James Horner's version of the soundtrack. However, after having screened the movie with an early incomplete version of the score, the reactions at test screenings were against it and in less than a day Yared was off the project without being given a chance to fix or change his music, while Warner Bros was already looking for a replacement. [ [ "The Score of Troy - A Mystery Unveiled: by Gabriel Yared ] ] According to Yared, his score was removed due to a complaint by the screening audience that the score was too "old-fashioned".

The replacement score was written by composer James Horner in about four weeks. He utilized Tanja Tzarovska's vocals, traditional Eastern Mediterranean music and brass instruments. Drums are conspicuous in the most dramatic scenes; most notably, in the duel between Achilles and Hector. His instrumental scenes have themes very reminiscent of Rachmaninoff's Symphony No. 1.

Horner also collaborated with Grammy-nominated American singer/songwriter, Josh Groban and lyricist Cynthia Weil to write an original song for the film's end credits. The product of this collaboration, "Remember" was performed by Groban with additional vocals by Tzarovska. The song is available from the movie's original soundtrack.

Around the time of the film's release in theaters, Gabriel Yared briefly made portions of his rejected score available on his personal website which was later removed by the request of Warner Brothers. Bootleg versions exist on the Internet. Yared's score has since gained much of attention from the fans of movie music. Several petitions were made in request to release Yared's score on either a limited edition CD, or as a bonus feature or secondary audio track on the film's DVD. Those requests however, have been denied by Warner Bros.


Major sets for the city of Troy were built in the Mediterranean island of Malta at Fort Ricasoli from April to June 2003. Other important scenes were shot in Mellieħa, a small town in the north of Malta, and on the small island of Comino. The outer walls of Troy were built and filmed in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. [ [ Troy - Malta Movie Map ] ]

Director's cut

"Troy: Director's Cut" was screened at the 57th Berlin International Film Festival on February 17, 2007, and received a limited theatrical release in Germany in April 2007. [ [ Troja ] ] Warner Home Video reportedly spent more than $1 million for the Director's Cut, which includes "at least 1,000 new cuts" or almost 30-minute extra footage (Running Time: 196 minutes). The DVD was released on September 18, 2007 in the USA. The score of the film was changed dramatically, with many of the female vocals being cut. Various shots were recut and extended. For instance, the love scene between Helen and Paris was reframed to include more nudity of Diane Kruger. The sex scene between Achilles and Briseis is also extended. Only one scene was removed: the scene where Helen tends to the wound of Paris is taken out. The battle scenes were also extended, showing much more of Ajax's bloody rampage on the Trojans during the initial attack by the Greek Army. Perhaps most significantly was the sacking of Troy, barely present in the theatrical cut, but shown fully here. Characters were given more time to develop, specifically Priam and Odysseus, the latter being given a humorous introduction scene. Lastly, bookend scenes were added: the beginning being a soldier's dog finding its dead master, and the end including a sequence where the few surviving Trojans escape to Mount Ida. In one of the commentary sequences one of the film editors said that when it came to deciding whether to follow "Iliad", or do what was best for the movie they always decided with what was best for the movie.

Awards (wins and nominations)

"2005 ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards"
* Won - Top Box Office Film — James Horner"2005 Academy Awards (Oscars)"
* Nominated - Best Achievement in Costume DesignBob Ringwood"2005 Japanese Academy Prize"
* Nominated - Best Foreign Film"2005 MTV Movie Awards"
* Nominated - Best Fight — Brad Pitt, Eric Bana
* Nominated - Best Male Performance — Brad Pitt"2005 Motion Picture Sound Editors (Golden Reel Award)"
* Nominated - Best Sound Editing in Foreign Features — Wylie Statesman, Martin Cantwell, James Boyle, Harry Barnes, Paul Conway, Alex Joseph, Matthew Grime, Steve Schwalbe, Howard Halsall, Sue Lenny, Simon Price, Nigel Stone"2005 Teen Choice Awards"
* Won - Choice Movie Actor - Drama/Action Adventure — Brad Pitt
* Nominated - Choice Breakout Movie Star - Male — Garrett Hedlund
* Nominated - Choice Movie - Drama/Action Adventure
* Nominated - Choice Movie Fight/Action Sequence

Additional information

* The Trojan horse prop that was used on the set of the film now stands in Canakkale, Turkey, near the remains of the ancient city of Troy. The horse was a gift offered presumably because of the close proximity of the UNESCO Heritage site. (coord|40|9|7.18|N|26|24|20.24|E|region:TR_type:landmark|name=Trojan horse prop

* Coincidentally, Brad Pitt tore his Achilles tendon when he jumped off his ship during filming.

* Brad Pitt's physical transformation for the role was supervised by Gregory Joujon-Roche and his team at Holistic Fitness in Los Angeles.

* Brendan Gleeson (Menelaus), Brian Cox (Agamemnon), and James Cosmo (Glaucus) had worked together before on another famous historical epic, "Braveheart".

ee also

*Epic film
*List of films based on poems


Further reading

* Petersen, Daniel (2006). "Troja: Embedded im Troianischen Krieg" ("Troy: Embedded in the Trojan War"). HörGut! Verlag. ISBN 3-93823-099-1.

* Winkler, Martin M. (2006). [ "Troy: From Homer's Iliad to Hollywood Epic"] . Blackwell Publishing. ISBN 1-40513-183-7.

External links

* [ Official website]
*imdb title|id=0332452|title=Troy
*metacritic film|id=troy|title=Troy
*mojo title|id=troy|title=Troy

Box Office Leaders USA
before = Van Helsing
year = 2004
date = May 16
after = Shrek 2

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