Who hasn’t seen Brad Pitt in the role of Achilles in the magnificent movie Troy? The movie is about the Battle of Troy, a great Greek battle that is supposed to have taken place more than 3,000 years ago. The Battle of Troy is depicted in the classical work the Iliad by the mythical poet Homer (Ilion is another name for Troy and hence the name Iliad).

Almost all heroes in the Battle of Troy are blond. So Homer’s Iliad could never have taken place in Greece.

Brad Pitt in the role of the great hero Achilles either wears a wig or he has had his hair bleached. That may seem strange, because he is playing a Greek hero. The movie isn’t very faithful to the Iliad, but there’s one thing that the film makers have been faithful to and that is the fact that Brad Pitt is blond. Because Achilles is actually blond in the Iliad. And not only Achilles is blond; blond is the most common hair color among the Greeks in the Iliad.

One thing that, however, doesn’t correspond with the Iliad is that Achilles / Brad Pitt is fighting in a hot desert. The sun is constantly shining and Brad Pitt and the other heroes are sweating. They don’t in Homer’s poem the Iliad. There, it’s cloudy and cold. The heroes are wearing wool mantles and sometimes even furs over their shoulders when they’re not fighting. They warm themselves by fires – even though it’s in the middle of summer. Furthermore, they sleep under wool blankets during the supposedly hot Greek summer nights. One of the favorite activities of the supreme God, Zeus, is to snow and hail. He doesn’t seem to be that interested in basking with the sun. Snow and hail is his thing, more like King Bore – God of Winter.

Article 2: The Battle of Troy: was it really in Greece that the blond heroes fought in the cold?

Sketch of Brad Pitt as Achilles in the battle of Troy from Homer's book the Iliad
Copyright Annika Lagerhorn