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Villain Origins: When are they Necessary?

No big blockbuster is complete without a fully realized villain. But does the villain need an origin for his or her evil? Of particular interest would be the Star Wars prequels and Maleficent.

  • It could be interesting to analyze common themes of villains' "evil" between multiple movies. Are there common origins of "evil" between different villains (such as traumatic family events - as one potential example). Have they always been "evil," or is this "evil" something that developed over time? Are there differences in representations of male villains and female villains? Just some questions to consider while exploring the topic. – aileenmaeryan 7 years ago
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  • It would also be interesting to see this discussed in relation to villains. You have superhero villains , who often are given a back-story and then villains in movies like Die Hard or action movies like that. From their you could compare and contrast the necessity of each origin and, as Aileen said above, look into common themes. – Tyler McPherson 7 years ago
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  • In modern films, villains surely need an origin because fully realized villains are more valuable than villains crammed just for the sake of competition to the hero. You can analyze the various potential kinds of origins. One being traumatic family events, as aileenmaeryan put. Another can be the situations of growing up and yet another personal morals. Especially those villains who are likeable in their own right, like Joker or V will make a good read. You can also analyze the good cases like Megamind, who wasn't really evil at all but embraced evilness explicitly as a profession. – Abhimanyu Shekhar 7 years ago
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