A few days ago it was announced that the next issue of Empire Magazine would be themed all around Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and to herald said announcement was an awesome cover featuring the two titans. Now thanks to Comic Book Movie we’ve got a look inside the mag, and boy is there a treasure trove in there. First up, Zack and Deborah Snyder chat about the (unsurprising) non-existant Marvel VS DC rivalry.
“Right from the beginning it is different tonally from where those movies are. You know, DC is an ancient world in a lot of ways.”
“I can see how people would want to make it this big, intnse rivalry. Listen, they are so great. I loved Guardians of the Galaxy…our films are a bit more serious. They deal with things that are a little darker. Things that place them in our world.”
I wouldn’t say that the themes Marvel deal with aren’t relevant to our world, but alright.
One of the things which people have bashed DC for in the past (and present) is their lack of universe-building until now. For a long time it felt as if they were too scared to tackle any heroes other than Batman or Superman, and whenever they tried it always ended in failure. Obviously that is no longer the case yet fans still wonder just how the studio are going to create a functioning shared universe without a clear figurehead, which Marvel does have in Kevin Feige. While they don’t have someone whose job it is to run their universe, from the looks of things Zack Snyder will be a creative consultant on pretty much every movie as will his producer wife Deborah and producer Charles Roven, but aside from that it seems that filmmakers will retain creative control so long as it doesn’t mess up other plans.
“What we are doing is ground up all the way. It is one giant story. The first thing we had was the Justice League concept. The other movies, in a way, have to support that. That is our Wonder Woman, our Aquaman. They have their own creative concepts that supports them, but they do serve Justice League in the coming together of those heroes.”
“I want all the other directors of the other films to be able to stretch their legs and do what they want, but at the same time there is a big interconnected universe. I have given everyone amazing access to our story, to me, and what we are doing. All the films have like minded conceptual jumping on points.”
The lucky bastards at Empire even got to see a shared universe timeline, which Deborah Snyder describes as the “sandbox”.
“Kind of a timeline of what every movie is, where it is going, and where the films fit in relation to each other. We call it the sandbox. It has borders around it, but everybody gets to play in the sandbox. On Suicide Squad, David Ayer has a lot of specific control over his area of the sandbox. Even if he crosses the line a little bit, we see if we can push our boundaries back a little bit.”
This just affirms what I originally thought – especially that last little line. It’s exciting because Marvel are known for their strict creative control; sometimes that works (The Avengers), sometimes it doesn’t (Iron Man 2) and sometimes it does work but the overall product feels very manufactured (Ant-Man). There is obviously no guarantee that this approach will work any better but I guess we’ll see come next August with Suicide Squad, which is the first DC Universe movie not directed by Snyder. Hey, speaking of that…
Apparently all of the villains you’ll see in the movie were put in prison by Batman. It’s pretty awesome to think that at some point Ben Affleck came to blows with Will Smith. The overall approach to the Caped Crusader has me incredibly excited; he’s my favourite character and it feels like we’re finally gonna see the Bruce Wayne on the big screen, almost thirty years after his major big-screen-debut.
“Initially I thought, ‘I’m older, it doesn’t seem like the right sort of fit for me’. Then Zack pitched me his concept for this older, more broken, kind of fucked up Batman. It was something we haven’t seen. We have seen that Batman is willing to cross the line to protect people. That vigilantism has been a part of his character all along, and we are tapping into that mentality when faced by something as potentially as deadly a Superman.”
Admittedly, this quote is slightly worrying. The whole “pushing boundaries” makes me think that Batman may be doing a Superman in this movie; i.e. killing somebody. There’s already a shot in the trailer that looks like he’s snapping somebody’s neck. Even though I didn’t like Man of Steel I ended up a staunch defender of killing Zod at the end. The whole “no kill” thing with Superman has been broken a bunch of times and it’s less integral to his character, in my opinion. In terms of the movies he is just starting out and it can kick off some good character growth of learning to control his anger and emotions, eventually leading into becoming a Superman who doesn’t kill. Why would he be a boy scout right off the bat?
The same can’t be said for Batman. He’s been active for 20 years (the magazine said so) and it’s built-in to Bruce Wayne not to kill after his parents were shot. It puts him on a higher level than other superheroes. Yes, he’s a brutal vigilante but he doesn’t intentionally kill people (accidentally is another matter). If he did then the Joker would have died back in the 40’s. Not only would it make no sense at all for the character we love from the comics, but it wouldn’t make sense for how he’s presented in the movie either. Sadly, I fear that he will most certainly be killing somebody in Dawn of Justice, and I’m not sure if I’ll be able to defend it.
And here are the rest of the images.
And on a final note: if you’re still not excited for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice then we’re really not sure what is gonna do it.