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I’m a Marvel and you’re a slowpoke

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Borys Kit picks on Warner Bros:

As Marvel embarks on transferring its universe of comics characters to the big screen, it is determined to succeed where DC Comics and its corporate sibling Warner Bros. have stumbled. But then, Marvel always has been one step ahead of DC.


Turns out that Marvel is not only tying together its comics into one vast universe,ut is now doing the same with its movies. Something Warners has yet to emulate:

Warners has successfully revived Batman with the help of Christopher Nolan and Christian Bale, but its Superman franchise, as if encountering Kryptonite, is struggling. Wonder Woman, under producer Joel Silver, can’t get her invisible jet off the ground. And the much-ballyhooed Justice League movie has lost steam: Bale had no intention of reprising Batman in that movie, and all the actors Warners had attached skewed young, making it almost a “Teen Titans” movie.

Here is the problem: Warners lets its filmmakers dictate what happens in its superhero movies. There’s not a hint of the existence of Gotham City in “Superman Returns,” for example, because Warners franchises have become filmmaker fiefdoms, where no one plays with each other. Worse, the filmmakers and executives take it upon themselves to make wholesale changes to DC’s mythology. Witness the fact that Superman has a kid!

  1. well, remember that Lorenzo di Bonaventura wanted to relaunch Superman and Batman off Superman vs. Batman, which would had direct unity.

    The HR has a good point, but what he’s not accounting for is Warner’s success with Superman and Batman as film franchises and properties, not comic book adaptations.

    Now, if Dark Knight bombs, then Warner should listen up. But to what extent? A bunch of movies directed in sitcom-style like Iron Man? At least Dark Knight and Superman Returns have a visual style.

    I’ve always thought DC ought to exercise the HBO connection for some interconnected series, selling them online then on disc….

  2. There’s not a hint of the existence of Gotham City in “Superman Returns”

    Yes, there is.

    Daily Planet City Room, just as Lex’s plan begins to get, to get, to getting kind of hectic. Listen to the news anchor on the television.

    Also, and please forgive the strong language, but fiddlesticks to all this talk of interconnectedness.

    //Oo/\

  3. That’s SOUNDS cool to connect all the properties. But what if the movie bombs and is connected to a really good movie. I’m really looking foward to an Avengers movie but what if the Hulk is ass. A good movie is a good movie and while it may seem cool to connect it to another movie, if that other movie is a bad movie I don’t care if Nick Fury is in it or not.

    What if Superman Returns was connected to Dark Knight? People hate SR and would it lead to a bad stigma to DK?

    I don’t think Marvels’ way is inheritantly better than Warners, I just don’t want shitty movies gussied up with an appearence by Downey Jr. in an attempt to get me to see it.

  4. Giving Superman an illegitimate child as a main plot point was a terrible decision as far as I’m concerned. Siegel & Schuster would be disgusted.
    Injecting adult themes into what was always meant to be a children’s character (or at the very least, all ages-appropriate) struck me as unimaginative and unnecessary.

  5. Is there any fiscal evidence that this approach works yet? As far as anyone can tell, the only “interconnection” has yet to arrive, and this article seems to imply that the strategy has already paid off.

  6. Re : Here is the problem: Warners lets its FILMMAKERS dictate what happens in its superhero MOVIES.

    Ouch – as much as I enjoy most of Marvel movies, well, this sentence is rather odd : Boris Kit tends to forget that those are Movies first, super hero is just a genre, like western or thriller or romance.

    And thank god MOVIES are ‘dictated’ by FILMMAKERS – not by comic book readers.

    Sorry for the geeks in all of us…

  7. Well, this kind of article is not unexpected considering the success of the Iron Man and Spider-Man movies. Or even the Blade series. Plus the bit at the end of the Iron Man movie has everyone salivating for the next steps in opening up the Marvel Universe to the movie-going public.

    However, I think the tent-pole mentality of building up a movie that will successfully carry all of Warner’s financial hopes kind of works against DC. To wit: so far all of Warner’s DC movies basically bring characters who’ve had TV life to the big screen. Superman, Batman and Robin, and Wonder Woman. The “Super Friends”, really, but without Aquaman who’s had the bad luck of being turned into a punchline for bad jokes. Warner is looking for built-in name-recognition. That’s why a Blue Devil or Shazam!/Captain Marvel movie has an uphill battle being made at Warner. Unless a big-name star agrees to star in the movie and then we might be talking. For example, if Tom Hanks decided he wanted to play the Barry Allen Flash, that movie would get made.

    Personally, I think the movie-going public would go for a Blue Devil movie if it starred Jackie Chan as Blue Devil. Lately everyone’s been treating Blue Devil as DC’s version of Hellboy, but in the old days, Blue Devil had more of a classic Spider-Man or Daredevil feel to it with crazy acrobatics and more chances for comedy. People would go to see Jackie Chan first, but they’d be introduced to a DC character they’d never heard about, which would be cool. That kind of thinking is how movies like Constantine and Ghost Rider got made, after all.

  8. Great…. just we everyone needs–comic book continuity forced onto films. They don’t seem to understand that a majority of the audience for film doesn’t give a damn whether Superman’s world intersects with Batman’s world. They just want a decent film. All of those little hints are great for people who understand them, but they should stay in the background where they belong. The success of Marvel films has more to do with the filmmakers who made them than Marvel executives dictating to said filmmakers.

    Continuity is evil.

  9. Well, Marvel have already busted their film continuity, because Stan Lee has appeared as different people in most of them…unless he was really playing an aged Jamie Madrox.

  10. Without the influence of “other media”, there would be no Kryptonite (created for the Superman radio show) or Barbara Gordon Batgirl (created for the Batman TV show). There’s a longer list, but really, sometimes a shared universe for other media is a horrible idea and might kill another great idea for the sake of an imaginary continuity.

  11. Barbara Gordon/Batgirl appeared in Detective Comics in 1964, thus predating the television series.

    On the other hand … Alfred Pennyworth was killed in the series around the same time. Since the television series featured him prominently, DC writers contrived a method of bringing Alfred back into continuity.

  12. “Well, Marvel have already busted their film continuity, because Stan Lee has appeared as different people in most of them…unless he was really playing an aged Jamie Madrox.”

    So did Bruce Campbell! The Spider-Man films need a Crisis on Infinite Campbells.

  13. “Marvel always has been one step ahead of DC.”

    Except of course, where it comes to punishing swiping artists on their books.

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