DC TOONIVERSE: Bruce Timm Steps Down as Producer

Bruce Timm has been an integral creator in the development and evolution of the DC Tooniverse since the debut of Batman: The Animated Series, and the big news, as revealed in this article excerpt, is that he has stepped down from his supervisory position.

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By EdGross - 3/29/2013
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Interview conducted by and copyright Edward Gross

There’s a change coming to the DC Tooniverse, and not just with the cancellation of Young Justice and Green Lantern: The Animated Series, but in terms of the continuing series of made for Blu-ray/DVD films that began with Superman Doomsday in 2007 and will next be represented by this May’s Superman Unbound. Most notably, Bruce Timm, who has been guiding the vast majority of things DC animated since the debut of Batman: The Animated Series in 1992, has stepped down from his position as producer, initially to have focused his energies on GL and, more significantly, to develop some of his own projects. Stepping into his place as supervising producer is James Tucker.

TCA 2010 - Warner Bros. Studio Day

Tucker, of course, is no newbie to this world having served as producer of Justice League, Legion of Super Heroes and Batman: The Brave and the Bold. He's also been credited as a director on Batman Beyond, Static Shock, Legion of Super Heroes and, currently, Superman Unbound.

“Bruce had done a lot since Justice League Unlimited ended,” explains Tucker, “so it’s been quite a haul. I can’t speak for him, but I think going out on Dark Knight Returns was a special thing for him. If he was going to make the break, that seemed like a good time."

Tucker emphasizes that his goal is to keep things going in the "right" direction, living up to the reputation of what's preceded him in this role. At the same time, on a personal level, he hopes to "shake things up a bit."

"I'd love to use more of a variety of characters, but that's something I don't have control over," he says. "Granted Dark Knight Returns was long overdue to be adapted and I'm glad they did it and did it superbly. But beyond that, I'm not really interested in replicating, image by image, word for word, something that was in a comic book, because you can’t replicate that experience or feeling. You’re basically getting a secondary experience, so you have to make it your own in order to make it work as a movie. Creating films in which people are going through it with a checklist saying, ‘Okay, they took that out, they took that out…” I’m not interested in doing anything like that."

superman-unbound-1

For some fans who have been following the animated films, there is a growing frustration over the fact that the vast majority of the flicks center around Batman or Justice League, and then Superman, with many other characters not getting the same kind of opportunity to be featured. Of course there have been attempts, most notably with Wonder Woman, Green Lantern and even the collection of short films, DC Showcase, but the responding sale figures didn't support the idea of such forays. Tucker, for his part, believes that there’s a creative way around this particular challenge.

“I can’t go into specifics,” he says, “but I have a feeling when we announce our next slate of movies, people are going to be very excited because we will be using Batman, Superman and Justice League as a gateway to exposing other characters.”

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Dynamo - 3/29/2013, 8:57 AM
Bruce Timm will be missed, I wonder what he'll be doing now? Tucker is a logical replacement.
IgnurRant - 3/29/2013, 8:58 AM
Yes! Now bring in Greg Weismen and Brandon Vietti. They have more than prooven that they are worthy to take over as as Godfather.
IgnurRant - 3/29/2013, 8:59 AM
Never liked Bruce Timm's animation. Big body, little leg thing never worked for me.
AnitaDick - 3/29/2013, 8:59 AM
Good! Now maybe they can make films focusing on other characters in the DCU besides Batman. I bet all the Nolan fanboys are pissed.
AlReg - 3/29/2013, 9:09 AM
When I saw James Tucker was promoting the Superman Unbound movie in the sneak peek I had a feeling this was going to happen. Bruce Timm should be proud of what he has done.
JorL5150 - 3/29/2013, 9:12 AM
well, i wish the "new guy" best of luck.

bruce timm created (co-created) one of the most definitive versions of DC ever.
i'll take "B:TAS" / "S:TAS" / "JL/JLU" / "batman beyond" over the marvel cinematic in a heartbeat.
JorL5150 - 3/29/2013, 9:13 AM
btw-
timm cast himself as a villain in B:TAS. he was an obsessed toy collector.

wasnt that the one with adam west as wayne's mentor?
i think so. maybe.
AnitaDick - 3/29/2013, 9:14 AM
I said that because ever since Nolan, people have overrated Batman big time. Sorry, I know that it isn't related but I do not like Nolan at all.
Pokeysteve - 3/29/2013, 9:14 AM
Timm was kind of that light of hope that DC would keep producing awesome stuff....that's gone now.
JM4Superman - 3/29/2013, 9:14 AM
I hope he works on the DC Cinematic verse
xXkryptoniteXx - 3/29/2013, 9:15 AM
Everything must come to an end.
Rhysno1 - 3/29/2013, 9:15 AM
Bruce Timm is practically the godfather of my childhood
TheDARKestKNIGHT - 3/29/2013, 9:17 AM
VERY sad to see Timm go but also intrigued what Tucker will bring with trying to expose more characters to general audiences.

Batman: TaS was the best cartoon ever. Tucker has big shoes to fill.
TheDARKestKNIGHT - 3/29/2013, 9:18 AM
What @JM4Superman said
ScabbyJ - 3/29/2013, 9:20 AM
First of all, the character of Batman can NEVER be overrated. Second, this truly is the end of an era for DC. Here's to hoping the dark undertones still go strong. TTgo & BTB don't look very promising.
thewonderer - 3/29/2013, 9:21 AM
@onthepurdue

Nolan shouldn't even be mentioned on this article. This is Bruce Timms step down, he deserves the attention. Ironically, you just brought the attention to Nolan by hating him. Good job.
KrazyForKomix - 3/29/2013, 9:21 AM
I can't believe one of those holier than thou, faux-comic fans hasn't chimed in already with a caustic, "Timm's gone, get over it already. I can't believe you fan boys are whining over the past. What babies."

I for one, am going to miss his guiding influence over the DC line. Sucks for them.
CavEl - 3/29/2013, 9:24 AM
Good, now other DC characters might get some love. Bruce Timm loves Batman, he puts his best foot forward for Batman.

He just does Superman and Green Lantern because WB forces it on him.

AnitaDick - 3/29/2013, 9:25 AM
Sorry, maybe I'll go more into it on a thread related to Nolan. I didn't mean to bring it here. My apologies.
KNIGHT3000 - 3/29/2013, 9:26 AM
Thank you Sir, and NUFF RESPEC. You are an inspiration
marvel72 - 3/29/2013, 9:27 AM
batman the animated series is the best animated show ever!
BackwardGalaxy - 3/29/2013, 9:27 AM
AAAAAAAAAAAAAH! RABBLERABBLERABBLERABBLE!

Seriously, this just sucks. I love Timm's work and I hate the idea that they aren't going to be adapting famous comic book storylines. So, this is just one big ole' zero for me.
CavEl - 3/29/2013, 9:29 AM
Put him in charge of Batman movies, sure, but not the other DC properties.
BlackIceJoe - 3/29/2013, 9:33 AM
I am a big fan of what Bruce has done. He gave me lots of great shows from the 90s till now. But I am not the biggest fan of Batman now & I want to see other characters get the light now. So I think this should be a good thing. The Wonder Woman film he did was good but it really was not that close to who Diana is & acts like too.

I think it sounds like James gets it. That there is more then Bats in the DC universe. I myself would love to see an Outsiders or Teen Titans film. Not like the old Teen Titans show on TV. But more like they are in the comics. I also would love to see a Dr. Fate or Aquaman film or tv series.

I can't wait too see what James will do. Best of luck DC has great characters & I can't wait to finally see some more of them. Also it will be neat to see what Bruce does next too.
BboiBlack - 3/29/2013, 9:34 AM
Young Justice proves there's more to DCtoon than just Bruce Timm.
MJPETTY7 - 3/29/2013, 9:37 AM
This makes me very sad, but at the same time, I cannot fault him for this. Maybe he'll write some Batman comics in the near future!

Also, I wish Tucker luck. I've always liked the guy, and he's the next best choice to held DC Comics' animation.
unknownfacts - 3/29/2013, 9:39 AM
Bruce Timm was only part of the greatest animation department in comic book history.I mean they still have their writers,artist,and everyone else who plays a major part in making their great cartoons so I highly doubt that their cartoons will suffer greatly for it.

CavEl - 3/29/2013, 9:40 AM
@ Levitikuz - No he didn't, he said other DC heroes didn't have interesting stories. Wonder Woman was actually a good sell, it's the fourth highest bidding movie in Timm's run.

Bruce Timm is an ass.
novaprime - 3/29/2013, 9:44 AM
its cool he had a grear run, maby now we can see More Characters from the Dc Universe apear in ANIMATED MOVIES. LIKE SHAZAM, NIGHTWING, GREEN ARROW,AQUAMAN AND MORE!!!!!
SCURVYDOG619 - 3/29/2013, 9:45 AM
Bruce Timm-New head of Marvel
Animation....

Kinda LIKE the way that sounds.....

groundrunner15 - 3/29/2013, 9:46 AM
Maybe now DC will release more animated movies besides Batman and Superman.
CavEl - 3/29/2013, 9:52 AM
@ monkeyballs3 - Batman (1989) is better than Begins or TDK? It's not even better than Rises.

I get that Squaremaster annoyed you, but let's not make outlandish statements.
Darkknight23 - 3/29/2013, 9:56 AM
Sad to see Timm go, but I do like Tucker's work and his direction. Speaking of direction, he DC/Warner Bros. think you can get Timm involved in your motion pictures to give that some direction. The guy revolutionized animation. He could probably do wonders with your cinema universe. What do ya say we give it a try, huh?
Laird4Life - 3/29/2013, 9:58 AM
"I'm not really interested in replicating, image by image, word for word, something that was in a comic book, because you can’t replicate that experience or feeling. You’re basically getting a secondary experience..."

What about Naruto Comic to Naruto Shippuden? I think that's masterfully done and in many ways the animation enhances the story.
GreenLanternCanexican13 - 3/29/2013, 10:00 AM
Shame. As an animator I have always looked up to Timm. Loved his style and influence over the animation world. Sad to see him go. Seeing as how DC nation has turned to shit now that GL and YJ are gone I'm not surprised he didn't step down earlier.
marvel72 - 3/29/2013, 10:02 AM
batman(89) & batman returns are both better than the dark knight rises.
LP4 - 3/29/2013, 10:18 AM
@marvel72- Yeah Batman Returns was definitely my all time favorite Bat-film and still to this day favorite CBM of all time. Perfect hauntingly beautiful music by Elfman, Penguin was a total badass, Catwoman was awesome and sexy as [frick]ing hell and it had a nice deep story and mixed with great fight scenes as well.



TheSuperguy - 3/29/2013, 10:22 AM
As awesome as Nolan's trilogy was, my Batman will always be the 1989 BATMAN. Just like my Superman will always be the Chris Reeve movies.
LP4 - 3/29/2013, 10:24 AM
@Squaremaster- You seem to be trolling today my friend. Why else would you be starting a Burton vs. Nolan flamewar here?

No one here said Burton was better. I simply said i loved Batman Returns. But you just keep yammering on and on about how much Burton sucks and how much Nolan rocks.

Ok, we get it. DROP IT NOW.
LP4 - 3/29/2013, 10:29 AM
@Superguy15- See, I preferred Batman Returns over Batman89. Batman Returns was darker, had waaaay more action and way better eye candy lol.

Ignoring the comics for just a moment and looking at that film from a moviegoer perspective. It was a great film. The story was deep- Penguin was abandoned by his parents, left to die but survived and raised in the sewers, Selina Kyle was abused by her boss and left to die eventually.

Both of them were used by the same evil figure- Max Shreck. Was Penguin the real villain? NO. He was upset his parents abandoned him and he was used and manipulated by Max Shreck. How about Catwoman, was she the real villain? NO as well. She was also used by Shreck and became Catwoman because of him.

The REAL villain in Batman Returns was none other than Max Shreck himself. I considered him the Darth Sideous "Emperor" of Batman Returns- operates behind the scenes, manipulating people.

That's such a great and multi-layered story right there.
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