‘Daredevil’ Writer Wants Serious New Film Adaptation

Published 4 years ago by

Daredevil movie reboot Daredevil Writer Wants Serious New Film Adaptation

The world has changed a lot in seven years, particularly perceptions of how a superhero movie should play out. And that’s why renowned comic book author Antony Johnston hopes Daredevil can have a better crack at the big screen his second time around.

It was reported earlier this year that the so-called Man Without Fear would be getting a reboot – a la Hulk and The Punisher – with a script being written by David Scarpa, whose last major project was penning The Day The Earth Stood Still remake.

Johnston, whose work includes popular post-apocalyptic series Wasteland and the graphic novel Julius (which itself is set to be given the movie treatment with Law Abiding Citizen‘s F. Gary Gray directing), is now working on Daredevil - the comic series – with Andy Diggle, the man behind The Losers.

Speaking with Comic Book Movies, Johnston shared his thoughts about the direction a new Daredevil should take after the Marvel character (arguably) misfired in 2003 with Ben Affleck playing the lead and Mark Steven Johnson (Ghost Rider, When in Rome) directing.

And Johnston pulled no punches when it came to that original version, which co-starred Colin Farrell as the villain Bullseye and Jennifer Garner as the love interest/assassin, Elektra.

“I think it (the reboot) just needs to take itself more seriously, and quit goofing around. I took my girlfriend to see the first movie on opening night, and the combination of bad CGI and nonsensical story had me cringing in my seat. The performances really weren’t bad — even Affleck was pretty good, I thought — but in 2003, producers still believed a superhero movie had to have its tongue at least half-planted in its cheek. The success of the first Spider-Man movie didn’t help matters in that regard. But that attitude just doesn’t serve a character like DD, especially when you’re ostensibly trying to tell a serious story.”

DaredevilAffleckGarner l Daredevil Writer Wants Serious New Film Adaptation

Garner and Affleck face off in Daredevil

Like most of us, Johnston has since been seduced by the power of Christopher Nolan to bring to life comic book superheroes in a not-so comic book kind of way.

“Now that the Nolan Batman movies have proven you don’t have to be cute to make a good and successful superhero movie, we’ll hopefully see something more like that for a new Daredevil. As for stories, I hope (but doubt) that we won’t need to go through the origin yet again. I think pretty much any story since (Brian Michael) Bendis’ run started would work; something like the King of Hell’s Kitchen arc could be great on-screen.”

The first Daredevil managed to cover its production costs by making a touch over $100 million at the U.S. box office, but a direct sequel was never really considered. Elektra, who stole Daredevil’s thunder from his own movie, got herself a spin-off, but the thing bombed. Not quite as bad as Halle Berry’s Catwoman, but close enough.

Two years ago, 20th Century Fox co-chairman Tim Rothman opened up about a possible Daredevil reboot after Sin City creator Frank Miller and action star Jason Statham championed its cause.

With it finally getting the go-ahead, no doubt fans of the character are now hoping that a new Daredevil will not be a slapped-together affair whose MO is simply allowing 20th Century Fox to stave Disney/Marvel off from reclaiming the character rights.

daredevil reboot Daredevil Writer Wants Serious New Film Adaptation

Of course, it starts with the script and Scarpa as a screenwriter does not fill me with an abundance of confidence. Let’s hope the producers aren’t as blind as Matt Murdock.

But what about the acting talent? Who is capable of taking over for Affleck? Johnston has an opinion on that as well, with Michael C. Hall (Dexter, Gamer), said to be a favorite among fans.

“I think he’d be a fine choice, sure. The main thing is finding someone who can simultaneously combine the heroism and vulnerability of Matt Murdock, and Hall could definitely do that. But so could someone like, say, Damien Lewis — who I’ve also seen proposed by fans, but that might just be because he has red hair…! I don’t know if I have a personal favorite; honestly, I haven’t given it that much thought, I’m not one of these writers who ‘casts’ a comic in his head while writing it. How about Zach Quinto? He’d be an interesting choice.”

Daredevil certainly deserves another chance to succeed, albeit in a much darker and grittier way than the 2003 film, but is the reboot in safe enough hands? Should Marvel itself be given the chance to take the reins?

Source: Comic Book Movies

Header Image source: Fanpop

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  1. What is the deal with all those reboots these days?! I´d prefer a sequel. The movie wasn´t that bad. It was actually way better than that crappy X3 or both FF movie combined…

    • Seriously, I completely agree dude

  2. I agree, Daredevil is a pretty good comic book hero and I think that a reboot may suceed. Although I too thought the first Daredevil was pretty ridiculous at times, I did find some promissing moments in the film; mainly in teh character of teh daredevil himself. I think we need a film thate better attacks the persona of who the daredevil is and what he represents. I think that an origin story is NECCESSARY and we need to see it through from the beginning. I think that Micahel C Hall playing the daredevil would be as perfect as it could get because you get a GREAT actor at a most likely relatively low cost. One thing they need to avoid is teh whole love story garbage. People that will be seeing this movie will not be the same fans of the notebook so keep it real

  3. Fox rebooting Daredevil is a lose–lose situation for us.

    If the reboot sucks, we'll all be disappointed and unhappy.

    If the reboot is good, Fox are going to turn it into a franchise and it'll be another damn decade before we get to see Daredevil interacting with the other Marvel superheroes.

  4. Hall could actually work for this movie, i'd like to see that. and i would definitely like to see a much darker daredevil than the one in 2003.. i mean it was ok, but nothing special.

  5. I say that all Marvel Comics related movies should be returned to Marvel. Truthfully, I really do not trust anyone but Marvel to make good movies out of their comics these days

  6. I agree with ya there. Id like to see Marvel handle the rights to all its comic book hero franchises. I liked Daredevil but thought it could of been better, even the director's cut didnt cut it for me. I thought Michael clarke Duncan did pretty well as Kingpin aswell as Colin Farrell as Bullseye. I know ill pass on the Spider-man reboot but ill wait to see who's all involved in this Daredevil film. Again i wished Marvel had the rights to the other franchises since they know what they're doin.

  7. @Goldspire, Exaaaactly,that's why I don't even like entertaining the idea at all because it's obvious who will be making it and that's bad news. I feel each character should have been given a one shot deal. If you mess up the first time (ex.Universal Studios”Hulk) GIVE IT UP and GIVE IT BACK.

  8. While I agree that DD would do well with a darker and grittier production then Affleck's 03 version, I really fear that a lot of producers think Dark and Gritty equal box office success. Batman Begins and The Dark Knight succeeded because of a fantastic narrative, talented actors (Bale's BAT-Voice not withstanding) and A director that knew the content and character from back to front.
    Honestly I think they should follow suit with the current Film-verse, which is to say to balance both the humor and the dark and grity. Ala IRON MAN and Incredible Hulk, I am very curious to see how this plays out In Captain America (it self very dark) and the THOR film which could very easily become very camp.

  9. Daredevil was awful. In my opinion, it was worse than the first Punisher film. Yes, I think it is that bad. The actors were awful – other than Colin Farrell who I thought was fine.

    I would prefer for the film to go back into the hands of Marvel who care about making it a good movie and true to the source material. It seems like Fox does everything just to make a quick buck and thats unfair to the fans.

    I didn't like any of the actors that were mentioned for the lead role. I'm not excited about this reboot at all. Everything Fox gets their hands on becomes a failure. So sad. I wish they could just do us all a favor and just let the rights revert back to Marvel where it belongs.

  10. With Fox involved a DD movie is a disaster waiting to happen.

  11. I enjoyed DD and I would rather just see sequel, with may be Matthew Fox, then have to another reboot. The first had its darkness to it. They just could just amp it up for the next one. With the Kingpin in jail that wouldn't be so hard to do.
    Elektra I liked as well. The only thing that might have kept people away is that they had brought her back from the dead. If they had kept it that part out and made it an origin tale then more people might have seen it.

  12. See, I think this is a bad approach. Daredevil wasn't always a doom-and-gloom guy, he used to know how to laugh. He was often described as a swashbuckler. He had a sense of adventure, of dare I say it….fun?
    Because that's what I found TDK and Batman Begins were missing….a sense of fun. There's nothing wrong with fun, y'know. You can tell a dramatic story and still have fun. Iron Man proved that.

  13. Zach Quinto and Guy Pierce are the only people on my list as “possibles” to play DD.

  14. Attatching Scarpa's name to this possible remake makes me shudder…
    A first-grader could have done a better job with “The Day The Earth Went Thud…”
    PLEASE,PLEASE,PLEASE, FOX….Let Marvel handle their own properties! You treat their heroes like rented cars…”Oops! I scratched or dented it! Oh well…it's just a rental…”

  15. The Director's Cut was much better than the theatrical cut.

  16. Mark Steven Johnson was making the movie the way he wanted to do, than the studio kidnapped his movie making him shoot other scenes, with a story of revenge like “who took my girl.” If the director's cut was released in the theaters at the first place, we would have a sequel.

  17. The director's cut was good but the movie overall needed some things changed or re-done in some way. The music was horrible, ben affleck was okay but not the best casting and jennifer garner also very corny in my opinion. Liked Bullseye and the Kingpin casting and the tone of the movie but could have been so much better.

  18. Punisher, Elektra, Ghost Rider and Daredevil should all return to Marvel that would be a fresh reboot. Spider-man and Fantastic Four too.

  19. Daredevil could've been a much better film if it incorporated the basic 'film noir' elements that Frank Miller, Ann Nocenti and Kevin Smith were successful with during their tenure on the comic book series.

    The film was a bit too polished for my liking as opposed to the gritty and dirty Hell's Kitchen we all know from the books. The movie could have bought to light the poor social economic status of the community at large, the community in which Matt Murdoch / Daredevil, serves and defends.

    Anyone who's read Miller's, Nocenti's and Smith's run on Daredevil knows what I mean. A Daredevil film needs to have a greater sense of drama, realism, maturity and adventure.

    Ann Nocenti's prolific run from issue #238-291 was also largely ignored by the film makers. She introduced Typhoid Mary in issue #254. I also think a Robert Rodriguez / Frank Miller collaboration would be ideal.

    Overall I didn't mind Ben Affleck in the role. I thought he did a reasonable job despite the script and poor direction, and the costume could've been a lot better. :-) The dark crimson suit worked well but the mask was just wrong.

  20. Even if Fox or Sony finds the various formulas to make D.D., or F.F., or Spider-man successful its really far less than ideal to have the properties outside Marvel's umbrella. So with that said the only success I'm interested in is what the fan base can do to move that ideal forward. If you must see these inferior adaptations then by all means rent them don't see them in theaters! Feed the property not the studio…

  21. I love Daredevil, the directors cut is amazing, it is one of my favourite modern comic book movies. Affleck was excellent in the part, but it was jennifer Garner that killed the film in the publics eye. She was terrible and given a spin off why exactly?

    I'll only go see another DD if Affleck is involved. I loved the humourous aspect was in there, amongst the violence. I do not want to see another comic book movie like TDK.

  22. Frank Miller needs to take this project on. I would love to see this movie done in the Sin City style. It would look cool and Frank wouldn't put up with the cheese.

  23. Why can't these studios let Marvel do the work and come to some sort of profit share? Surely it would be mutually beneficial…

  24. Okay people. Here is the wierd thing about doing movies like this. Everything could work. The problem is getting rid of these businessmen who are ruining all of these franchises. Give power back to the creative minds and we will start to see quality stuff again.

  25. Give us a new DD movie!!!!! If FOX can't do it right GIVE THE RIGHTS TO MARVEL!!!

  26. A darker and grittier DD would be great,but please don't try to remake TDK by using DD.

  27. if there needs to be a remake why not the punisher. why didnt they just make a sequel to the 2004 punisher, thomas jane was the best actor for that movie

  28. Boop. If people watched the Daredevil Director’s Cut, they’d know the movie was worth its weight in gold (…. or silver, or some kinda precious thing). A sequel would be good. A reboot? Well, we’ll just have to see. I loved the old movie, to be honest.

    And the DD Director’s Cut was plenty dark and gritty, with the realistic amount of death in the bad part of town and with DD being okay with leaving rapists to get run over by a train. When you cut to the law scenes, they were intriguing. Any more dark and gritty and I’ll be hitting my head against the wall at all the emo.

  29. I find Damien Lewis an untriguing choice. He was freaking fansastic in Band of Brothers and is doing some really good work on Homeland Security now. I also agree that, as DD has always been my favorite comic book character, the DD storylines have always been very dark and gritty and the film should follow the same pattern.