When I read from Los Angeles Times that the Justice League movie was a go once DC won a legal battle against the heirs of Superman creator Joel Schuster, I wanted to start jumping up and down. My inner child, who still remembers the 70s and 80s cartoon Super Friends with absolute joy and giddiness, could not stop squealing.
Of course, many are skeptical it can be done right, for valid reasons. Unlike Avengers, which has become the most successful superhero film grossing $1 billion world wide, the JL film has less time to cook and simmer. Characters were carefully developed in their own franchises and each kept giving teasers in the end which enticed viewers to expect the Avengers film with anticipation. JL doesn’t have that luxury, however… and I can only speak for myself but seriously, who in the world doesn’t know Superman? Even Batman, who has gone through so many incarnations is well known worldwide. Marvel had to develop Thor, Captain America and Iron Man because many people, especially outside the US knew very little about them.
True, the fact Batman’s latest incarnation was Nolan’s dark, more realistic trilogy could be harmful. But Batman is dark nonetheless, it’s just a matter of defining how dark JL will be. There’s no reason it has to be bright and cheery like The Avengers, in fact it could offer a stark contrast if it wasn’t. Batman is an outsider even within JL, he keeps everyone in check because he’s one of the few humans, at least that’s the way he is portrayed in Justice League Unlimited. JLU, by the way, is a brilliant animated series and Warner Bros should take notes from there. Also Justice league from the 90s along with Batman The Animated Series which is the best animated series ever in the history of the world. Ever.
To me, the hardest character is wonder woman because I honestly don’t think everybody will be happy with her no matter what. Feminists will complain she’s too sexy, some will complain she’s too manly, too weak, not relatable, I mean you name it, it will be said. So my suggestion is once again JL and JLU. She’s strong and she has trouble relating to people, which makes sense, because she’s not human, but she has a good heart. I am also very partial to Shayera and I would love nothing less than to see Hawk Girl in the film but we’ll see.
The tone of the film should be ideally darker than Avengers, to mark the difference. Unfortunately, I fear WB will be looking for a PG version to get the kiddies in on the action and who can blame them really, I grew up on Super Friends, my inner child wants to see this film as much as my adult self.
But a lot depends on Man of Steel, Snider’s film coming next year. Will it be tied into the JLA film? Since Nolan is involved, and he’s not interested in the JL film, it’s unlikely, but WB needs to find some element of continuity which according to director Zack Snyder in a recent interview with the New York Post, they trust him to “keep them on course.” Warner Brothers may be interested in making JL in 2015 because they’re scared the superhero trend will die down but that won’t happen. Many, many people have been waiting for this film to get made. I know I have. Many don’t trust it will be good, but if Warner Bros. play their cards right, they might just pull it off.
As far as the latest rumor floating around about Joseph Gordon-Levitt possibly being Batman, my knee jerk reaction was good, given that it would somehow give continuity from Nolan’s Batman. But if you’ve watched Dark Knight Rises (spoiler) then you know that he’s supposed to be Robin, so maybe he can be Nightwing? In Young Justice there’s a Nightwing and a Robin but that might be too much of a stretch, too many characters would be detrimental to the Justice League film.
Of course there will be endless rumors going around this film until any solid material surfaces, and I will be dissecting all of them with joy.