Seems like folks were having a lot of fun at Wondercon this weekend, but if there’s any panel that grabbed attention it was Del Toro’s Pacific Rim panel. New footage, posters, autographs, fat jokes… seems like all the bases were hit. But while the Pacific Rim stuff has already filtered out via new posters and trailer descriptions, it was actually Del Toro’s DC project — Justice League Dark– that left with the most new details attached.
You’ll recall the project is one Del Toro is still developing with Warner Brothers, and would have the director corralling many of the DCU’s supernatural characters for a unique macabre superhero team-up. It still a ways out from a greenlight and we all know how things tend to be for Del Toro projects, but there’s been consistent enough movement on this one to stay positive.
In any event, the filmmaker described his approach to the story at Wondercon. Apparently Constantine will be the anchor, origin stories will be woven into the larger narrative, and the title is not set in stone:
On Justice League Dark, or Dark Universe, what we’re doing is we finished the bible. Then we’re going to start the screenplay with a writer we hope we can announce very soon. What I’m doing is the lead character that guides us through that is Constantine. Blonde. He is basically trying to recruit these guys. On Etrigan, I’m using Jason Blood in the time of Merlin. We get to their origin through the story. We don’t make the origin story at the top. We find it out as they each have mysteries to solve. Swamp Thing is at peace with who he is, but Deadman still needs to figure out who shot him. It’s all woven in. When I was a kid, my two favorite characters in the whole DC Universe were Etrigan and Swamp Thing, so I’m in heaven.
I love the sound of how Guillermo is planning for origins within a team-up movie that has to introduce all of its characters. It’s a unique challenge that DC/WB also face with Justice League proper- perhaps Del Toro’s ideas can feed into and improve WB’s other efforts?
This project will hopefully develop alongside and then be shot after Del Toro’s Crimson Peak. Keep your ears open for the screenwriter announcement…