Welcome to the newest feature here at DC World. For Director’s Chair we will be putting you in the hot seat and asking questions all about your cinema experiences and what you would like to see next for DC films.
In this edition it’s DC Worlds Max Byrne answering the questions and telling us about his cinema experiences and what he wants to see from DC next.
If you would like to be involved and have a go then please get in touch with me on Twitter and send a message to @thefilmbloke. I look forward to hearing from you.
It’s always better to see a film on the big screen, how often do you get to the cinema and what is your snack of choice?
I go pretty much once a week to my local cinema in Bolton, I love it! I’m a tight Northerner so don’t like paying those absurd cinema prices for snacks, but on occasion it has been known that I’ll treat myself to a sweet bucket of popcorn.
Outside of Comic Book films what other films and franchises do you love?
I love Star Trek, Terminator, Alien, Predator, Kevin Smith, Rocky, Rambo, all the typical stuff. I adore the Godfather trilogy, even Part 3 which I happen to think is a masterpiece of a film, it just suffers in comparison to the first two, which are flawless. I’m a sucker for 80’s films, they are the films I grew up on and still hold a special place in my heart.
It’s fair to say that critics weren’t blown away by Justice League but since then the likes of Wonder Woman, Aquaman and Shazam have all helped to get the DCEU back on track. What are your thoughts on the DCEU so far?
I love it. But, I’m still unhappy that WB threw out all Zack Snyder’s work and planned story arcs for the future. They had something very special and they blew it. It’s the single biggest crime in cinema that Ben Affleck is no longer Batman, even though I am looking forward to the next incarnation. I would kill to see the Snyder Cut of Justice League, even though I think it’s a distant dream. When you read about what they had originally planned for parts two and three of Justice League it sounded amazing, but it breaks my heart that we will never get to see it now. I do applaud the course correction that WB has since applied though, the last few films have been superb.
Have you seen Birds of Prey and if so what did you think of it?
Thoroughly enjoyed it. Really off the wall and zany stuff. It’s a shame that it hasn’t made more money at the box office but such is life. It deserves a sequel as I thought that overall, they did the characters justice, Cassandra Cain apart. In a world where so many big budget films are cut from the same cloth and are made by numbers, it is a breath of fresh air to get a film that takes chances and dares to be different. I can see why it is not to everyone’s taste, but we should enjoy the diversity on offer.
With Wonder Woman 84, Suicide Squad 2, The Batman and possibly the Flash movie all in the works how excited are you for the future of DC cinema?
Very excited. With the slate of movies announced for the next couple of years, it is mouth watering stuff indeed! After so many rumours and half truths, it is great to see a list of confirmed films with actual release dates. I cannot wait for Black Adam personally, I think this is going to be an excellent film. With the promise of several JSA characters making an appearance in the movie, I get the feeling this is going to be right up my street. I just hope and pray that they have an overall plan that can span multiple films over several years. No passive planning, just decide on a direction and stick to it come hell or high water.
Henry Cavill’s Superman almost seems to be the forgotten man of DC. The fans definitely want him back. What are your thoughts on a Man of Steel 2?
Well technically we have had a MOS2, it was called Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice. Everything in that film was a direct consequence of the events of Man of Steel. But yes, I want to see another Superman movie with Cavill in the role. It staggers me that there isn’t one in active production right now. Along with Batman, this is DC Comics’ flagship character and a brand that needs to be out there as much as possible. Cavill was a fine Superman and deserves another go. Whilst Christopher Reeve will always be the definitive portrayal of the character, Cavill is the perfect modern day actor for the part. I don’t want to see the role recast in a couple of years with another actor so get it made WB!
A simple one now… Keaton, Bale or Affleck and why?
Affleck all day long. To me, he is the quintessential cinematic Batman. Not only that, he is the perfect Bruce Wayne too. At the risk of offending a legion of fanboys, I’ve never been a huge fan of Keaton’s take. He is a superb actor no doubt, but to me he lacked the stature needed to be Batman. It’s hard to look at him and buy into him being able to single handedly take down a room full of mercs as Affleck does in BvS. Bale was amazing in the role and I am a huge fan of what he brought to the table but Affleck is the one for me. He got jacked up beyond belief for the role, had the intensity and rage needed and looked impressive in the suit. Yet, he was also smooth and charming when playing the billionaire playboy side of Bruce Wayne. He had all the bases covered.
Now it’s time to take your seat in the Directors Chair…
Warner Brothers approach you with a huge budget of $300million to make a film that fits in with Wonder Woman, Aquaman and Shazam but which DC character are you making your movie about and how will the film play out?
Green Lantern. Make the film epic in scope, played out on multiple planets and a visual feast to boot. But, don’t forget the very human part of Hal Jordan, and make sure that enough of the film takes place on Earth to help the audience engage with the character. Have it as an origin story, showing the inner workings of the Green Lantern Corps on a level we haven’t seen before. Give the character a reason to crossover with the existing DCEU landscape too, so it doesn’t feel shoehorned in if a team up movie is ever on the cards again. There are so many interesting characters in the Corps that the possibilities are endless.
Of course your film is a huge success and WB want more, only this time it’s a much lower budget and they want a film that will fit easily in to the world of Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker. Which Hero or Villains are you going for and what happens?
Green Arrow. Keep it street level and rated R. Portray him as a vigilante doing whatever it takes, having lost his moral compass on Yian Lu and struggling to find his place back in the world. Barely keeping it together, he has to present to the public as Oliver Queen the billionaire but the only time he feels safe is when he puts on the hood and takes it to the streets, dishing out brutal justice.
Your second film cleans up at awards season and now Marvel want to be involved and they offer you any of their characters to put in a DC film. Who are you bringing over and what team up or face off would we see with our DC favourites?
Frank Castle, The Punisher. I would love to see him go up against Batman. Their ideologies are fundamentally similar but Batman would never cross that line and take a life willingly. To see them clash on the streets would be quite something as they brutally face off before inevitably team up to take down a common enemy.
And that’s that. Some great ideas from Max on what he would like to see next when it comes to DC on the big screen. Green Arrow is definitely coming up a few times here and proving a popular choice from fans. Will we see Oliver Queen make the jump from small screen to big in the future? Time will tell.