ARROW EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Executive Producer Andrew Kreisberg

Anyone expecting Smallville’s Green Arrow on this fall’s Arrow will be disappointed. What they WILL be getting, instead, is a grittier take on the character. In this exclusive interview, executive producer Andrew Kreisberg discusses the approach being taken.

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By EdGross - 8/30/2012
Interview conducted by and copyright Edward Gross

COMIC BOOK MOVIE: One big difference I notice about this show is that in the old comics and cartoons, Green Arrow used to shoot arrows with little boxing gloves on them, but in here you’ve got sequences where there are corpses laying there with arrows protruding from out of them. Is that risky at all? Normally your hero is not going to, even with bad guys, leave them with arrows sticking out of their dead bodies.

ANDREW KREISBRERG: We were just talking in the writer’s room yesterday that that’s another difference between Green Arrow and Batman. The Dark Knight movies make it really clear that there is a line that Batman will not cross, and that is to take a life. We very clearly and very early on establish that our version of Green Arrow doesn’t have such limitations. Is it risky? I don’t know. Honestly we don’t think, “Hey, this is risky, let’s do this” or, “Hey, this is risky, let’s not do this.” I think that’s very dangerous. I think the goal should always be tell the best story you can, be true to that story and don’t think about the risk or the reward, because that just gets in the way of you telling the best story possible. Is it risky? Maybe, but it’s not something that we’re factoring in to our creative decision making. We’re trying to do right by the property and the character.

COMIC BOOK MOVIE: Let’s face it, when you have a guy shooting arrows at people, there are going to be corpses with arrows sticking out of them, so I applaud it.

ANDREW KREISBERG: We don’t think of this as a superhero show, we think of this as a show about a hero and we think about it as a crime drama. A lot of our touchstones for the character were more Jason Bourne and Ethan Hunt from Mission Impossible; those characters that kill when necessary. Oliver is not a murderer, but if deadly force is called for, he will use it.

COMIC BOOK MOVIE: Stephen Amell did this great job of showing two versions of Oliver Queen, but in your mind who is Oliver Queen/Green Arrow? What kind of character is this man?

ANDREW KREISBERG: Honestly that’s the answer we don’t want to give. To us that’s the engine of the show. One of the things we said from the beginning was the show is kind of a mystery; it’s a procedural and the mystery happens to be Oliver Queen. We don’t want to spoil the answer to all those questions in an interview, because that’s really what the series is about, and our hope is that people will tune in to the series to get the answers on who exactly is this guy and what makes him tick. In the first episode we give you a hint, sort of the first chapter of a much larger story in the evolution of how this male Paris Hilton evolves into this cold-blooded fighting crusader. The series will continue the flashbacks that we leave off in the pilot, which is approaching the island; we want people tuning in to see how that transformation takes place. Even in the second episode, we start to deal directly with the question of who is Oliver Queen and of the four different iterations of Oliver Queen you see in the pilot, which is the real one? Who is the true man? We want to let the series answer that question rather than us doing it with a sound bite.

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22 Comments
Jollem - 8/30/2012, 11:53 AM
good stuff, Ed

also, saw you in geek magazine. that's pretty cool
EdGross - 8/30/2012, 11:58 AM
Thanks, guys. And, jollem, I'm looking forward to seeing the issue myself. I was a regular contributor to the old incarnation of the mag, so I'm really happy it's back.
Jollem - 8/30/2012, 12:09 PM
@EdGross - good stuff in there. i read that it's starting back up again in the #1 spidey issue. weird that i never heard of it before but now i'm seeing it in places
EdGross - 8/30/2012, 12:14 PM
Jollem, it had a really good run before, actually. They've done a hell of a job with the magazine; a real stand out.
EdGross - 8/30/2012, 12:16 PM
Nomis, the deaths make sense; so much more effective than cartoon violence where everybody gets up and says, "Man, he grazed me with that arrow." Don't know if you've seen the pilot yet, but it's really effective.
EdGross - 8/30/2012, 12:52 PM
Hey, grif, how's it going?
Redhood2k10 - 8/30/2012, 2:31 PM
People need to realize characters need to evolve with times. It would be stupid to watch a show thats similar to Adam West's Batman. People will be blown away when it premises.
FireKnightRises - 8/30/2012, 4:46 PM
this series is looking good, hope they're not make it chessy and too drama like smallville but still its CW :(
Super12 - 8/30/2012, 5:47 PM
I can't wait for this show. So excited to see a live Arrow on the small screen!
superhoodie018 - 8/30/2012, 5:51 PM
the only thing about this show that sucks is that we won't see black canary :(
Boogie138 - 8/30/2012, 6:03 PM
green arrow just edges in as my #1 dc comics hero. while i am excited i am unsure of the future of this project. remember heroes? if you don't have a clear plan about where your show is heading, and if creative talents get let go or leave then things begin to unravel and never get stable footing again.

i want this to kick ass. for a few seasons and have a ending the show can be proud of. please prove my fears incorrect. crime drama sounds like a good start but if the show can't evolve in a natural way then its pointless.

oh and if they doing a no superpowers take on it, i better not get any water-down villians. use non powered (there are plenty and freely borrow from dc universe) and if every baddie is some organized crime boss or business man looking for a 'hostle' takeover then your already fighting an uphill battle. lets see how fresh that is come season 2.

if this is some hidden 'lets turn green arrow into a grim and gritty realistic (somewhat) hero cuz it worked for batman, they both lack powers' crap then i will die a little more inside.

not sure how much more my nerd heart can take
Minghagz - 8/30/2012, 9:15 PM
I'm actually glad that they are establishing him to have no limitations. I kind of noticed that from the previews and clips. I think this sounds very promising.
PeterParker1991 - 8/31/2012, 6:49 AM
Bring on October 10
KeithM - 8/31/2012, 7:44 AM
"We don’t think of this as a superhero show..."

Shame that.
AutoFreek - 8/31/2012, 2:05 PM
Obviously, this director's perception on superheroes is untruthful. These directors blind themselves with the thought of making it "realistic" and neglecting the hero's original concept therefore dissapointing diehard fans. I guess what I'm saying is take a realistic approach but don't change a character's concept trust me it's happened before.
bigdaddy73 - 8/31/2012, 3:43 PM
Oh wow.... he's killing.. still gonna be a lame ass show.
direct2logan - 8/31/2012, 11:30 PM
Personally I think this show will fail. What do I mean by that well in my opinion if a show cant last more than three seasons its a fail. I would love to see a Green Arrow TV show done right. SO far every thing they are saying about it is wrong. Just my opinion nothing more.
Jer3miah - 9/1/2012, 2:17 AM
I liked this interview. Engaging questions with engaging characters. I wonder how I'll be able to follow this show online? I don't watch tv, so I don't blow my money on cable. There must be a site that'll air this after it airs on tv.
DPeterParker - 9/2/2012, 1:06 AM
i don't know guys, i really like the fact that they'e crossing the line because it is a super bold decision however..CMON super heroes don't kill, especially justice league. don't make the green arrow the dc version of the punisher...but i'll wait to see the show.
Connerkentver1 - 9/2/2012, 9:59 PM
That is exactly what they are trying to do here. Murdering serial killer vigilante shit like a Robin Hood meets Punisher mash up. Could prove to be interesting. But really why bother. Justin Hartley did a fine job as Oliver Queen/ Green Arrow in Smallville. Story told. I wish CW would have picked up The Grayson's or Paradise Cove.
lokibane2012 - 9/3/2012, 6:40 PM
"ANDREW KREISBERG: We don’t think of this as a superhero show"

Well you SHOULD, faggot. Maybe then your show wouldn't be TDK-lite that is doomed to fail.
lokibane2012 - 9/3/2012, 6:42 PM
And to those who think that they're "taking risks" or something. No, they are not. They are trying to appeal to the Billion Dollar TDK crowd. It's just masked pandering. Except the people involved with this show are talentless hacks who will botch it.

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