200702051234Shawn Levy, hot of the blockbuster NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM has been named as the new director of the FLASH movie. This comes on the heels of David S. Goyer announcing he was off the picture.

Sources said that Levy, who before “Museum” had been known for such comedies as “Cheaper by the Dozen” and “The Pink Panther,” has no intention of making “Flash” a comedy but is aiming for a lighter movie than previous Warners comic book adaptations, such as “Batman Begins” and “Superman Returns.” Goyer’s “Flash” also had been dark-themed.

Levy will oversee the writing of the new draft, and it is believed elements of Goyer’s script will be used in the development process.

Goyer had expanded on his take on the Flash over at his MySpace blog and gives a peek behind the curtain:

To be honest, when WB first approached me about doing The Flash, it seemed a little too good to be true. A part of me thought they’d never really make a movie like that. For the record, the script did involve both Barry and Wally as The Flash. I wanted to showcase the legacy aspect of the hero — as that was something that hadn’t been explored yet in film. Like Batman Begins, the script drew on some seminal comicbook runs (Mike Baron, Mark Waid, Geoff Johns).

There have been other super-hero scripts of mine that fell by the wayside. An R-rated Ghost Rider script that Stephen Norrington was going to direct. A horror-centric Doctor Strange script for Sony (which portrayed Mordo and Dormammu in a very Lovecraftian light). Even a pretty crappy Venom/Carnage script that I got roped into writing for New Line!

Andy Walkers script for Batman/Superman was great. And I’m sure Whedon’s Wonder Woman is pretty damn cool as well.

The truth is, I’ve had a remarkably good track record with these kinds of films so far, so I don’t have a lot to complain about. My peers and I are well-compensated for what we do. We’re essentially living the dream we’d envisioned when we were kids. Now we get to meet and work with people we viewed as roll models and heroes.

Just the other day I had lunch with Wendy & Richard Pini, the creators of Elfquest. (And I can remember buying their very first issue back in 1978 when I was just thirteen). I got to have dinner with Neal Adams before the Batman Begins premiere. Work with the likes of Stan Lee and Mike Mignola.

In the coming weeks I’ll post a bit more on the projects I’ve been working on since the Flash’s demise. (One of them takes place in the DC Universe.) Until then…

Meanwhile this story from The Hollywood Reporter expands on the bookend story of Joss Whedon going off the Wonder Woman movie.

It’s interesting that Goyer had a “dark” take on the hero rooted in (to the general public) obscure continuity. With what was widely perceived as a disappointing box office return on SUPERMAN RETURNS, its likely that Warner Bros. is taking a closer look at these “reinventions” of their core characters. As Goyer and Whedon leave behind these high profile projects, the former in favor of today’s hot flavor director, it’s also the first sign that the grip of the fanboys may be loosening a bit in Hollywood.

We don’t want to make too much of this. Goyer and Whedon are talented folks and we’re sure to see them around again. In the meantime, we’ll be poking around a little but more for…the rest of the story.


  1. “With what was widely perceived as a disappointing box office return on SUPERMAN RETURNS, its likely that Warner Bros. is taking a closer look at these “reinventions”

    Superman Returns was super faithful to the previous film incarnations. A total tribute. It was for the older generation.

    Batman returns was a bit more of a “new take” on the franchise (even more growup and serious except with ninjas and a hummer car)

    The sense I get is that studios prefer lower budget complete reinventions that are hipper for the kids of today. Especially if it can help them sell toys and t-shirts.

  2. I was going to say that mayhaps Superman Returns did have disappointing b.o. returns – but it was still one of the top five grossing films of last year.

    That’s gotta count for something.

    I hope it finanically warrants the WB enough to see the day when Supes dukes it out with Brainiac on celluloid.