Even as conflicting rumors suggest that the Justice League film planned for 2015 is floundering, hope for a cohesive DC Comics movie universe has come from a source unexpected even to hardcore comics fans – the occult superhero-horror series Justice League Dark. Alternately known as Heaven Sent and Dark Universe, this adaptation of some of DC's spookier characters is currently being shepherded by fan-favorite director Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim). Since the title is not remotely locked down, for the purposes of this article we'll refer to the project simply as Justice League Dark.
Recent reports have indicated that the previously nebulous prospect of a Justice League Dark movie may be solidifying more quickly than we thought. If del Toro's latest update on the project is anything to go on, audiences may end up viewing the grim adventures of John Constantine and Etrigan the Demon before those of Wonder Woman and The Flash.
In an interview with Total Film, del Toro said that work on a Justice League Dark film is actually moving forward. Del Toro stated:
"... I am going to be presenting my storyline to DC and Warners of where I want to take this universe. We do have a writer, but until that is firmed up, I have to keep it a secret. I hope it happens. It's going really really well. It's like meeting old friends. I grew up with Demon Etrigan, with Swamp Thing, with Deadman, so these are characters that are near and dear to my heart."
This coheres with previous reports that del Toro was actively crafting an outline for the movie. What's surprising about del Toro's statement is the apparent speed of the work involved – it's only been a month since the previous stories about the film's progress. That del Toro is almost ready to present his outline and has a potential scriptwriter lined up indicates that his interest in Justice League Dark is more than just a passing one.
When asked about how he intends to approach the large number of disparate magical characters involved in the movie, del Toro said:
"I'd love to use the origins that are proper to each character. I love the idea of Jason Blood as a paladin and a knight... I love the entire Constantine mythology, the Dead Man mythology, the Alex Holland Swamp Thing mythology. These are really rich things to well, and to dig."
Although del Toro's enthusiasm for the characters is infectious, it would be a mighty tall order to fit all of these origin stories into a single film. After all, almost none of them have anything to do with one another. If a Justice League Dark movie tried to stay faithful to the exact beginnings of each of these characters, the film would quickly become unwieldy. By that same token, attempts to make these origin stories more intertwined might irk fans of the source comics.
Brushing these reservations aside, the news of Justice League Dark's progress is genuinely exciting. The characters listed by del Toro truly are some of DC's best, suggesting that we might see elements pulled from classic comics such as The Demon, Hellblazer, and Saga of Swamp Thing. Guillermo del Toro is perfectly matched to this material, and it would be a treat to see him bring his combination of no-nonsense darkness, visual effects experience, and peculiar whimsy to it. We at Screen Rant will continue to eagerly follow the progress of Justice League Dark, no matter its final title.
Keep your eyes peeled to Screen Rant for updates as Justice League Dark/Dark Universe/Heaven Sent becomes less and less of a creative fever dream.
Source: Total Film