Friday, September 24, 2010

You will not agree with me here

Christopher Nolan, whose Prestige I caught the end of as I was about to go to bed last night (God that's a good movie...even if the logic behind the final reveal caused me to have to explain it to my wife using props), is the Don Corleone of superheroes at DC right now. As such, he has supposedly made a list of potential capos to step in and direct Superman, the least interesting, most famous superhero of all. The clock is ticking, as there are legal constraints regarding ownership of the character reverting back to Shuster and Segal, so things will move quickly or not at all. Deadline got their hands on Nolan's short list, and it looks like this:

  • Tony Scott (Unstoppable, The Taking of Pelham 123)
  • Matt Reeves (Let Me In, Cloverfield)
  • Jonathan Liebesman (Battle: Los Angeles, Clash of the Titans 2 [upcoming])
  • Duncan Jones (Moon, Source Code)
  • Zack Snyder (300, Watchmen, Sucker Punch)
Let's take a look at these potential candidates in order of my suggestion for who to hire for this exciting relaunch...and by exciting, I mean I hope it's this:
Tony Scott - No. Just. No. He does the same thing over and over again, and that thing is cause epilepsy and nausea. No. This is clearly just a studio suggestion. Right? I mean, we're not going to get Tony Scott's vomitorium version of the man of steel...right?

Jonathon Liebesman - What's a Liebesman? I would say that while the jury is still out on the man's career and talent, he doesn't have the experience that a project like this demands. Also, you really can't have Clash of the Titans 2 listed in your resume and have me take you seriously. You saw the first one and were all "I want in on that!" Nope.

Matt Reeves - And here's where things get interesting. I loved Cloverfield, which wasn't a big movie but was an effects movie. I have heard just great things about Let Me In, which was all set to be hated by those who loved the original and ignored by those who had never dared listen to Swede talk. There's a chance that this guy is really as talented as I think he is, and he may be perfect for the gig. But...we're talking about a pretty huge jump for him. I like that he's on this list, I may even love it. But I don't recommend him as my first pick.

Duncan Jones - Oooooh, doggie. Now we're cooking with napalm. Moon was a damn revelation, and Source Code is a bigger budgeted, star-heavy (Jake Gyllenhaal) flick. Jones can nail the character, Moon taught us that. And he made that flick look like it had 10 times the budget. Again, we have the experience issue, but the confidence and style in that first effort of Jones suggests the fearlessness needed here. This is probably who I want to get it most. It's just not who should.

Zack Snyder - Okay, hold on a minute. Before you start barking about the slow-mo style he uses ad nauseum, bitching about what happened with Watchmen, or whining about the baggage that comes from hiring him, consider three things. (1) - Have you seen the trailer for Sucker Punch? Just the trailer assures me he's the guy for this gig. (2) - Watchmen was brilliant. It was. Watch it again. He's going to faithfully adapt the character in a visually exciting way. (3) - His best quality is that he understands kinetic action and frenzied pacing. Uh, that's kind of what Superman needs. I like Snyder. I like him a lot. I think he'd respect the material, wouldn't try to slather his way of doing things all over it so much as he would remedy the biggest problem: Superman is effing boring. I know that this is the least appealing of the three sexy choices (nobody wants Liebesman or Tony Scott), but it's the right one. I think after Sucker Punch does what I know it's going to do, we'll have a whole lot of converts to this way of thinking.

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