After seeing the film a week ago, the question that immediately sprung to my mind was: how much of this film represented director Josh Trank‘s original intent and how much was the result of studio demands?
To that point, and probably out of frustration due to the heat he’s been taking this week, Trank tweeted (and immediately deleted) the following:
*cue me pulling my collar like Rodney Dangerfield*
There were reports of reshoots on the film over the Summer, and that the filmmaker was erratic on set and difficult to work with, which in turn led to Screenwriter Simon Kinberg and Producer Hutch Parker stepping in to “pull the film together”.
On the other hand, Fox isn’t exactly known for being hands-off regarding these properties. One needs only look at Gavin Hood and the way the studio treated him during the production of X-Men Origins: Wolverine to get an idea of just how the sausage may be getting made over there behind the scenes.
I’ll just reiterate what I said in my review; in that I think Trank had some good ideas that he didn’t quite have the ability to execute, and the studio was just not on the same page at all when they came to pull the pieces together to get it ready for release. Trank was hired in July of 2012, at a point in time when the major studios all wanted a piece of that “indie director reinvents a franchise” phase of these films, post-Batman Begins, that also gave us Marc Webb on Amazing Spider-Man and the fairly dour Man of Steel. This was just before WB, Fox and Sony all decided they wanted to make their own “shared universes” akin to Marvel’s. Now that a wholly different approach than the one Trank was hired for is in favor, you can imagine the possible conflict that *may* have greeted this production.
Regardless, Trank has probably torpedoed his chances at another big studio effort, but given the response that’s greeted this reboot, that was probably the case anyway.
Entertainment Editor for The Beat covering film, television and the occasional comic book. His work can also be found at GeekRex.com and can be heard on the GeekRex podcast. Also, your go-to Grant Morrison/Love & Rockets/Hellboy/Legion of Super-Heroes expert.