SPIRIT watch!

In only a few short days, THE SPIRIT will open, and the long, long promotional trail — and all those posters of a flapping red tie dotting the nation — will be just a memory. It was a good run.

In the meantime, Frank Lovece catches up with director Frank Miller:

What else do you think you’ll get flak for?

Because he doesn’t have a blue suit, which would have looked silly. That Ellen Dolan isn’t just a little simpering daughter to somebody; she’s a surgeon. I don’t know what I’ll get flak for – I just do the stuff I do! … Comics fans are wonderful, sincere people, but they can be a little arch.

§ The Scotsman ALSO caught up with Frank Miller:

In technical terms, Miller’s film is also at the cutting edge. Shooting against vast green screens on virtually empty sound stages, Miller says, he was able to work in a way that allowed his imagination to burn. Did he have as much freedom as when he is sitting at his drawing board? I ask. “It’s very close,” he says. “But this is a new adventure for me so I try not to compare the two. But I think that without the CGI, I don’t know what my role in movies would be. This allows my mind to really go all over the place. I draw something and then (effects supervisor] Stu Maschwitz turns it into something astonishing. There are places in the movie where it feels like a brush drawing!”

The Metro broke with tradition and caught up with co-star Eva Mendes:

In one eye-catching scene, she’s able to avoid arrest when she drops her robe — shocking The Spirit and moviegoers with a revealing backside.

“The point is my character uses everything she has as a woman to get what she wants,” admitted Mendes.

“If there were no brains behind the body I would have major qualms with it. This girl’s kick ass in every way and she’s such a smart dame that part of getting what she wants is turning up the sex.”


  1. For more interesting offerings from Eva Mendes, you might want to check out this video interview we did w/ her:


    It will blow your mind. Seriously.

  2. Mark Coale says:

    “It was a good run. ”

    Yes, for those making fun of the movie.

  3. Scratchie says:

    The Lovece piece offers an interesting glimpse into the workings (if that’s the right word) of Frank Miller’s mind:
    – – –
    Q: One of the hallmarks of Eisner’s Spirit is that he’s an ordinary guy without superpowers or Batman-like gadgets. The movie gives him a self-healing superpower, like Wolverine or the Hulk. What was the reasoning behind that?

    A: Well, I read a lot of Spirit comics when I was growing up, and he seemed to be able to take a cinderblock to the head better than anybody I ever heard of. And I just thought that he took unusual punishment was a fact of the character that should be explored.
    – – –
    So I guess the real reason Frank couldn’t let anyone else do the Spirit movie was apparently because nobody else would have been visionary enough to realize that the one thing that was always missing from Will Eisner’s signature creation was superpowers.

  4. Ah, now. Yes. Here’s the thing: I read that Kitchen Sink Spirit anthology series, and there was that one story where he was in the future, and the same nebulous age, only he wore a really douchey polo shirt and beard. Alan Moore wrote it. There were all these Eisner-text buildings everywhere.

    So…is this not without precedent?

    Also: that poster is ACE, and makes me think of Brad Bird.



  5. I wold’ve happilly sacrificed several small woodland creatures for a Brad Bird/Pixar movie about the Spirit

  6. The thing that’s really chapping my hide right now is that flapping red tie is too reminscent of The Shadow’s scarf.

    I first thought that this was a teaser poster for our (Sony Pictures) Sam Raimi’s Shadow movie.



  7. Rick: there are three words that come to mind after watching that video:


    Then again, does anyone care? It’s not like she’s famous for her mind.

    To paraphrase a Steve Coogan character lamenting the fact that people often said David Beckham wasn’t too clever: “Well, no one ever says: Steven Hawking? Yeah, well – he’s shit at football.”

  8. Alan Coil says:

    That’s right, Jim D., tis the season for making fun of the handicapped.

  9. The Mendes interview video clip wouldn’t play on my Mac, so I’ll take people’s word that it’s really good.
    As far as the warning poster goes, it is okay. I can’t tell from the screen resolution whether it indicates buildings blowing up, or it that is supposed to be white scratches on the surface of the poster.
    The poster introduces yet another graphic style, with the consistent element being that cool Spirit wordmark.

  10. Alan – Eva Mendes isn’t mentally handicapped. She’s just a stupid person trying to sound smart.

    (Oh, and she’s CLEARLY not physically handicapped, if you know what I mean.)

  11. Glenn Simpson says:

    Jim, I think Alan thought you were making fun of Hawking.

    Which you’re not, which is the whole point – saying he can’t play football is not a valid critique because that’s not what he’s famous for anyway.

  12. “Closed-captioning for the humor-impaired has been provided by Glenn Simpson.”

  13. Glenn Simpson says:

    Facilitating communication is my life…

  14. Wow, what a thoroughly boring movie. Seriously. There’s a good movie to be made of the Spirit, just like I’m sure there’s a good Catwoman movie lurking somewhere. T’ain’t seen it, though. The Miller movie was way campy, to the point of reminding me of Batman Forever & the nippled Batsuits.

    :/ The stylized visual bag of tricks was not enough to distract me from how much I was vexed by this flick. *headshake* The animated tie & sneaker soles made me think of some cool 80’s music videos, so I guess it wasn’t a total loss. & I saw it for free, so there’s that.

  15. Sphinx Magoo says:

    Ouch! Roger offers his take: http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20081223/REVIEWS/812239987

    Perhaps when everything dies down in 10 to 15 years and everyone’s forgotten, then Brad Bird will work with Pixar to put out the definitive version. In the meantime, we’ve still got Pixar’s John Carter to look forward to!


  1. […] 3.) Ever since the trailers went up, I’ve been complaining about the fact that The Spirit was in black instead of blue, and that he looked more like The Shadow than The Spirit. (Look how Shadow-y he looks here!) I’ve since heard that Miller experimented with blue, but it just didn’t look right, which I can sort of see. After watching the movie, the general colorless-ness of the whole film really makes what color The Spirit is wearing seem moot. If it were true black and white—i.e. his tie wasn’t brilliantly red, and there weren’t random splashes of color throughout—it would have rendered the coloration completely moot. After all, dark blue looks black in black and white. […]

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