We just got a new trailer for Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves and people are once again talking about the owlbear that was originally featured in the first teaser. Now, the film's co-directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein have finally addressed the backlash to the creature's appearance in the movie.
In Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, it is revealed that the tiefling Druid Doric can wild shape into an owlbear. It's a glaring departure from the original role-playing game where druids are barred from transforming into an owlbear because the creature is classified as a monstrosity. Needless to say, the idea of Doric's transformation has been met with outrage and controversy.
So why veer away from the source material? Co-directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein told IGN that owlbears were the D&D creatures that they had wanted to bring into Honor Among Thieves.
"We went through so many iterations because these owlbears, when you're looking at an illustration in a D&D book, you can get away with a lot in terms of the angles and how it lumbers and how it looks," Daley said. "But when you're actually seeing it in a three-dimensional space, it changes how you perceive what it should look like in the sort of most aesthetically pleasing but also formidable creature that you can make."
"We're aware that there was a certain amount of controversy that emerged in the D&D fan community after the first trailer showed our Druid wild-shaping into an owlbear. And it was something we discussed a great deal when we were writing it," Goldstein said. "We know that technically, it's not permissible, but we subscribe to the 'Rule of Cool.' And we felt that if we, as the dungeon masters of this movie, would let our players do this, then why should we deprive the audience of something that's as cool and fun as this?"
Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves will hit theaters on March 31, 2023.
Related: New Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves Trailer Pits The Party Against Chonky Dragons