D&D: 10 Movies To Inspire Your Wizard Characters | Screen Rant

The realms of Dungeons and Dragons allow players to explore and create new worlds and characters since the '70s, and millions of players have plunged themselves into the realms of fiction and fantasy ever since. While the game does offer players the chance to pick up the sword, the bow, or a trusty set of daggers, no adventure is complete without a spellcaster or two in the party.

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Wizards, sorcerers, warlocks, and their kind are practically essential to many parties, from the Fellowship of the Ring to various entries in the Final Fantasy franchise. Although the bearded sage is a common trope, some players might want to break away from tradition and experiment with their characterization. Fortunately, there are tons of inspirational outlets, such as movies and films, to inspire players' masters of the mystic arts.

There are a few more recognizable images in all of sorcery than the one of Mickey Mouse commanding the stars and planets as he stands at the top of a high mountain. But while "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" is only one segment of Walt Disney's concert feature, there's still plenty of inspiration to be drawn from Fantasia.

From the abstract imagery of "Toccata and Fugue" to the mythic themes of Beethoven's "Pastoral Symphony," a player can weave a magnificently musical magic-user or even a bard character that draws from both classic themes and organic elements. A mousefolk sorcerer certainly wouldn't be a bad idea either.

There are a few more famous or powerful wizards than Merlin the magician, and Disney is responsible for creating one of the most recognizable versions in modern media. The wily old wizard with the blue pointed hat and long white beard has essentially been the cookie-cutter mold for many magic users that have come since, and for very good reason.

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Simply put, some stereotypes are fun. For a bit of levity, sometimes it's fun to play the crotchety old wizard with an animal familiar and a dry sense of humor. Either way, players can't go wrong with using a character like Merlin as the base.

A common joke amongst most dungeon masters is that a campaign might start like Lord of the Rings but end up turning into Monty Python and the Holy Grail. That being said, the iconic British comedy is an excellent source of inspiration for both players and DMs.

Tim the Enchanter is a great base for any warlock or druid in the party, especially if they're looking to play them a little wild. Like the previously mentioned Merlin, sometimes it's fun to make a truly bizarre character for some comic relief.

J.R.R. Tolkien is one of the largest names in the fantasy genre, essentially building modern fantasy as players know it. His immortal Lord of the Rings series is the bedrock on which most traditional high fantasy is built, but it's not nearly as approachable as The Hobbit.

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Peter Jackson's might be the more elaborate affair, but the 1977 animated version captures more of the mystical nuances seen in the book. Simply put, it's the more traditional approach that any player should take notes on. Wizard players should pay attention to both incarnations of Gandalf and Elrond if they're looking for a more strange and mystifying approach.

Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings is an absolute masterpiece that every fantasy fan deserves to see, but he wasn't the first to adapt the iconic series. For players and DMs looking for something more of a traditional and classic approach to their campaign and characters, it's Bakshi's version that deserves their attention.

Everything is deliciously over-the-top, especially characters like Gandalf, Saruman, and the Ring Wraiths. It's that mix of eccentric and traditional that makes for excellent inspiration for both environment and characters.

The saga of King Arthur is a narrative most fantasy fans are familiar with, but Excalibur is a film that puts the epic in epic fantasy. It's a highly romanticized version of the King Arthur legend that directs more of a focus on swords and sorcery than chivalry and romance.

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The film's take on Merlin is particularly spectacular, as the wise old wizard archetype is traded for a mysterious spellcaster who plays just as big of a role as any of the knights of the round table. For players who want a wizard that acts more offensive than defensive, they wouldn't be wrong for taking inspiration from this film.

Although Tales of Earthsea would also be an acceptable Studio Ghibli film, wizard fans would be making a massive mistake if they didn't take a little time to appreciate the heartthrob that is Howl Pendragon. Simply put, Howl is just a warlock who maxed out his charisma stats.

Califer is his patron, since he owns his heart and soul essentially, and the castle can be viewed as a masterful work of sorcery or the work of a master artificer. Either way, Howl and the world he inhabits have more than a few elements that can be applied to a variety of magic users.

Not all wizards are the robe-wearing bearded sort, sometimes a touch of class goes a long way to make for a stand-out character. If players are looking to give their spellcasters a touch of showmanship and skill, they should take notes from the two dueling magicians in The Prestige.

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Christopher Nolan gives a new take on the idea of a wizard's duel with a splash of science-fiction to tie it all together. Since there's a School of Illusion background in a standard wizard build, a stage magician inspired by those seen in the film would definitely be possible.

Perhaps the most obvious source of most magic-user-players has to be the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Essentially, J.K. Rowling incorporates a multitude of different brands of wizards to create her fantasy realm, and players are practically given an artist's palette of inspiration to play with.

Old wizards, young wizards, wizards who turn into animals, wizards who follow an evil cult leader, both the books and the movies practically offer a full range of spellcasters to experiment with. The possibilities are nearly endless.

Of course, players can never go wrong with looking to Marvel's Master of the Mystic Arts, Doctor Stephen Strange. The version of the wizard archetype presented in the MCU relies heavier on spiritual and cosmic elements to separate itself from others in the genre. Players pulling from this incarnation will have to be excruciatingly committed to their art.

The MCU's wizards are the scholars, the masters, and the professionals of the magical world. They have achieved knowledge that is both arcane and cosmic and they know the repercussions of tampering with the fabrics of reality, space, and time. A player version of this brand of magic requires exceptional and unquestionable skills.

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