EDITORIAL: How To Make The JUSTICE LEAGUE Movie
Hal Jordan again, back for another addition to my DC Cinematic Universe editorials. In the midst of Man of Steel’s success, there are countless ideas and wishes for the film. Through ten points, I present not only my wish list, but also my idea on how to make this movie the only way it should be done: right.
Recently, I did an article on how a Justice League movie could be made successful. However, I also realized that there was a more definitive way of doing this. Having now seen Man Of Steel, I present you fellow CBM fans with the “Ten Commandments”, if you will, of a Justice League movie, along with a few personal suggestions and wishes for Warner Brothers. As always, feel free to check out my previous “How to…” editorials for the DCCU in the article box or my fan site. Remember to save all applause, trolling, and boobs until the end of the article and enjoy!
1. Don’t Add Too Many Characters
Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman are, otherwise, known by fans as the Trinity of the league. They are the core of the core members. From there, we branch out a little more to the likes of Green Lantern, Flash, and Aquaman. Martian Manhunter is also in this outer area too, as well as a few other candidates that only lead the way for more heroes to be added to the roster. Like The Avengers, these are the world’s greatest heroes and you can be sure that there are plenty to choose from, even if just narrowing it down. This brings me to the most logical area of thought: don’t overload your movie with characters. I understand that, in theory, it’s not impossible to include ten, twenty, or even thirty main characters in a movie. However, the key word is theory. It’s impossible to add that many characters in reality because a movie with 10+ main characters, assuming the proper development was put in place, would expand the movie’s run time longer than anyone would be willing to spare. The film should be between 140-180 minutes max, so keep that in mind when deciding the roster. I suggest going the New 52 route with Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, and Flash, but add in Martian Manhunter. From here, expand the universe out as planned with the solo outings, while also opening the doors to another hero;*cough*Aquaman*cough*.
2. Cast Gina Carano As Wonder Woman
What is better than a well-developed love story? A real one! However, the key words here ladies and gentlemen are real and well-developed. There is nothing worse than watching a movie with a love story that feels forced, shows no visible chemistry, and is just thrown together for the sake of cashing in on romance. Don’t believe me? Sit down with a bottle of Scotch and watch Twilight; the scotch is for the healing process later on. Luckily for us DC fans, the DC Cinematic Universe is now heading towards us at full speed and there is sure to be some sort of romance between Wonder Woman and Superman in the future. This is exactly why Gina Carano should be cast as Wonder Woman. Are there better built actresses to play the part? Yes. Are there better actresses out there? Absolutely. However, with Goyer writing the script, I am worried that, if the romance is included, he will under develop the romance between the two and, in return, increase the chance of any chemistry coming through. Some may suggest that a romance will not be added for Superman and Wonder Woman. However, these are two characters fighting for the fate of the world they love and the good of all people, while knowing they would give up their lives to do it. They watch each other’s back and save each other’s lives. With all of that in mind, how is it unsafe to assume some romance will spawn from this? They have very recently broken up, but it’s Hollywood, so who knows how long that will last. Since Henry Cavil and Gina Carano had a romantic history, it’s safe to assume that the only thing that could save an under developed romance is if it was covered up by real romance and real chemistry between the two actors, who have proven to be talented in their line of work. On top of this, she has the believability and fighting experience to pull of the role of Wonder Woman, which is never a bad thing.
3. Matt Bomer For Bruce Wayne
As amazing as Christian Bale was in the Nolan films, it has been confirmed that a new Batman will be set to debut, which leaves him out of the question for casting choices. However, there are a few other actors that could bring something new to the role that we had not really seen before, as well as draw in some audience members. I’m talking about the one and only: Matt Bomer. Anyone who has seen this guy knows he has the acting chops to pull off the Bruce Wayne and that he has the build to be Batman, provided he puts on a bit more muscle. Put him in a good looking suit, Armani or Bat, and he pretty much steps out of the pages of Detective Comics. Not only that, but he presently plays a character on the show White Collar who is not only handsome and charming, but is also smart, resourceful, and pretty good with investigative skills. As much as I love Keaton and Bale, the one thing that has lacked from previous portrayals of The World’s Greatest Detective is the detective aspect, albeit a few nods and examples. The bottom line is that this new Batman needs to be different in that he is not only resourceful, a skilled fighter, and smart, but he is also a great detective and can convince. I must point out, however, that Matt Bomer can do just that.
4. Redeem Green Lantern
Anyone who has read an article or comment pertaining to Green Lantern knows my stance on the subject. For those who have not, I believe that Hal Jordan should be brought back and Ryan Reynolds should reprise his role for a sequel and/or Justice League movie. I believe he did the best with what he was given, which is all a fellow Green Lantern fan could ask for. However, I am also aware that others believe the film is linked to various forms of cancer, which wouldn’t surprise me. Never the less, I realize and respect that one of the other options is to just bring in a new actor for Justice League and reboot the franchise from there. Some have even tossed around the idea of going with another Green Lantern, since there are now five to choose from. No matter what Warner Bros decides to do, despite my personal beliefs and differences to others, the bottom line is that the character and franchise should be redeemed.
5. Don’t Conform
Ok, so I know some may feel that I may start ranting about how Warner Brothers is going to most likely copy Marvel’s success for financial benefit, but I’m telling you it’s a conspiracy formed by the fascists at Marvel to further destroy the foundation of my childhood man! I joke, but, in all seriousness, I do believe that it’s not insane to think Warner Bros may just try to copy The Avengers and substitute the roster with it’s own characters. On paper, and from a business stand point, it’s not automatically a bad idea. After all, the movie did combine the main heroes of the franchise into an action packed, well written, and entertaining billion dollar product. However, there is something that I, as well as other Marvel fans, can agree on: Marvel had the advantage. They had over ten hours of accumulative character development, 4 years of expectation, and a cast and crew. Justice League, so far, has a definitive 143 minutes of questionable development, some audience expectation, an incomplete cast, and a doubt inducing writer. You cannot simply just copy The Avengers and expect a great movie that garners both critical and financial acclaim. I mentioned in my previously similar, but completely different article that this mentality will kill the DCCU before the cast is even finalized. “Well who cares about quality, as long as we make a profit?” This may be a reasonable question, but I think we all know how Green Lantern turned out. One of the main reasons it bombed was due to the negative reception and word of mouth, which pulled audiences away from the theater. The broad idea of this is that Justice League needs to be an individual. Rather than rely on humor to entertain, add it in when appropriate and, instead, ground the film in realistic emotion. This team should be together because it needs to be, so emphasize that. I’m not saying it should be completely “Nolanized” or anything like that, but it should be developed around the basis of a darker theme than Superman saving kittens and Batman handing out free ice cream. This brings me to the next key aspect, as well as a big want from this fan.
6. Development Is Key
The title should give a pretty clear description. Never the less, it is often missed by people in the film industry. If one were to examine a great film, such as The Dark Knight, they would most likely find it very enjoyable and character driven. I don’t mean to sound like a Nolanite, but it’s hard to deny that his Batman movies all had a major component to them, which was character development. It drove the plot of the movie, it shaped the characters, and it helped cause the audience to actually care about what was happening. However, development is not just simply present in a film; the idea of developing characters must be present to the writers. Will Beal’s Gangster Squad had this aspect missing. The dialogue was believable for the most part, the film had a great cast, it had a perfect backdrop for it’s genre, the action was great, and the cinematography was great, but the pattern noticed by many was the lack of development for a some of the main characters. I just hope that Goyer takes his sweet time, digs down to his days of Blade II, and really fleshes out the members of the league.
7. Define Through Action
This is another pretty short point to make, but it is an important one, none the less. The movie will involve a team effort, but it does not mean that there aren’t certain aspects to each team player. Traditionally, Superman is the leader of the league; Batman is his right-hand man; Wonder Woman is his right-hand woman. These three usually spearhead the attacks and/or defense, which identify their role as leaders. Flash and Green Lantern are the “second wave” of the group. They either help with saving civilians, or they are involved in the direct attack/defense. Aquaman is a little of both, especially in the New 52. The point is that anyone who has picked up a Justice League comic from the last decade knows the role each member plays based on their actions, not because it was bluntly pointed out. I specify the time period because I understand the older comics were usually very straight forward with the information. What I believe would be ideal is to have Superman and Batman be the main leaders by developing the team together, starting with Batman joining, and have them branch out from there to include Wonder Woman as a major player. The Flash could be shown to use his speed as not only a diversion for the villain(s), but he could also be directed by Superman to go help save the civilians or something along those lines. The same goes for Green Lantern. On a side note, this would be the perfect time to show some pair up potential, such as World’s Finest or a Barry & Hal team up. I could go on about how to define the member’s roles through their actions, but that is because there are so many members that can be eventually added. This, once again, brings me to my next point.
8. Easter Eggs
For comic book movies, I believe we are all familiar with a little word called, “CONTINUITY! Boom.” Oh man, that never gets old. Anyways, the Marvel Movies used Easter Eggs throughout their line-up to connect each film together. This is one of the only things that should be taken away as a lesson from Marvel’s plan. As we all know, the plan is to produce solo outings after the events of Justice League. In this regard, it would be beneficial to have Easter Eggs at multiple points of the film. These could range from subtle to in-your-face-product-placement style, but what matters is that they’re there and are relevant. If David Goyer called me up and said, “Hey man, I know you can’t wait for this and want it to show potential for future DC movies, so what nods do you want in the film?”, I would probably have to gasp for air. However, I would also recommend the following for the subject: Atlantis, Mars, Boom Tubes, something involving Zatana, Billy Batson, and for the love of Zod can I get a nod to Robin in one of these movies?!
9. Use An Appropriate Villain
Just like a prostitution ring, a good movie villain for this kind of job needs to have a few qualities. It needs to bring these people together, it needs to satisfy the paying customers and it cannot have been used multiple times in the last few decades. Look at Lex Luthor, for example. Snyder was smart about keeping him for a possible sequel because the character has always been a “go to” character for the Superman franchise. Even Joker, as awesome as he is, was saved for a sequel to Batman Begins. In order to fully get the most out of the villain chosen for the movie, it needs to be appropriate in every way: tone, believability for that universe, development, motive, ect. I don’t think Darkseid should be used right away. However, I also don’t think he should be used for a final film, assuming this involves a trilogy of JLA films. I want to see them do something involving the Atlantians or maybe the White Martians for the first film. I’m open to some original origin villain too, like Doomsday, as long as it makes sense. Save Darkseid for the sequel and emphasize the focus on threats from out of our world. Finally, explore the idea of our threats living amongst us and on our planet. This could be done with the Legion Of Doom or something along those lines. It shows not all threats are from out this world and that they can take us all by surprise, plus it would change up the patterns in the trilogy.
10. Don’t Rush
Arguably, I saved the best for last. It is a pretty simple concept too, but it’s still important. This should, arguably, be the greatest DC movie to date. In order to please fans and audiences everywhere, the crew needs to take the human factor into account and know what the audience wants. Be unique with your story. Hell, as similar as it is to The Avengers, I wouldn’t mind seeing a live action adaption of the Justice League of America cartoon movie, with Hal Jordan of course. Don’t throw money at the film expecting to make it any better than what is presented. If you throw paper on a fire, it only gets worse. Don’t rush the casting, don’t rush Goyer, and, above all, don’t rush this production.
What do you think? Do you even want a Justice League movie? I hope so, because I have Liam Neeson on speed dial if you don’t. Anyways, be sure to let me know what you think and feel free to thumbs up if you like it. Look out for next week’s DCCU editorial. Until next time, this is Hal Jordan signing off.
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