Beowulf is a 2007 American 3D motion capture epic fantasy film directed by Robert Zemeckis and written by Neil Gaiman and Roger Avary, inspired by the Old English epic poem of the same name. The film was created through a motion capture process similar to the technique Zemeckis used in The Polar Express. The cast includes Ray Winstone, Anthony Hopkins, Robin Wright Penn, Brendan Gleeson, John Malkovich, Crispin Glover, Alison Lohman, and Angelina Jolie. It was released in the United Kingdom and United States on November 16, 2007 by Paramount Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures, and was available to view in IMAX 3D, RealD, Dolby 3D and standard 2D format. The film received mixed-to-positive reviews from critics and it earned $196.4 million on a $150 million budget.
Beowulf (Ray Winstone) is a legendary Geatish warrior who travels to Denmark with his band of soldiers, including his best friend, Wiglaf (Brendan Gleeson). They travel in response to the call of King Hrothgar (Anthony Hopkins), who needs a hero to slay a monster called Grendel (Crispin Glover), a hideously disfigured troll-like creature with superhuman strength. Grendel attacks Hrothgar's mead hall, Heorot, whenever the Danes hold a celebration there, and Hrothgar was forced to close the hall. Upon arriving, Beowulf immediately becomes attracted to Hrothgar's wife, Queen Wealtheow (Robin Wright Penn), who does not love her husband and reciprocates Beowulf's interest.