The latest TV-tastic DC Comics related news items for September 28th – 30th, 2013!
“Constantine” and “Gotham” set for network TV series!
It has been quite a busy weekend for DC Entertainment as not one, but two new TV shows based on their iconic characters are in development with two major networks.
The first is “Gotham”, a police procedural series with Fox – the network which aired DC’s “Human Target” for two seasons and presumably holds some ownership rights over the 1960’s “Batman” series. According to Deadline, Fox has tapped Bruno Heller, the creator of “The Mentalist”, to helm the show which is set to take place before the arrival of Batman and many of his colorful villains and star a younger James Gordon as a detective with the GCPD. This would make the second dipping into the Batman well for a TV show for DC Comics; “Birds of Prey” ran for a season on The CW (then “The WB”) in 2002 and it featured Gordon’s daughter Barbara as well as Helena Wayne, the daughter of Batman and Catwoman, as star characters. It is unknown if it will feature any characters from the comic series “Gotham Central”, which was a police procedural featuring regular GCPD officers going about their jobs under the shadow of Batman (and other heroes) which ran from 2003-2006 and was written by Ed Brubaker and Greg Rucka. Surely, Gordon will need a cast of fellow officers for such a show, and characters like Renee Montoya, Crispus Allen, and Harvey Bullock would be easy locks for such roles. Fox has issued a “series commitment” for “Gotham”, likely figuring combining a police procedural with Batman is as close as TV executives get to a “no brainer” decision.
The second is “Constantine”, which is a drama based on the long running “Hellblazer” star set for NBC, the network which tried (and failed) to launch a “Wonder Woman” pilot from David E. Kelley in 2011. David Cerone, an executive producer for “The Mentalist” alongside screenwriter David S. Goyer are going to run the show, which is about a detective who dabbles with supernatural mysteries. A feature film starring Keanu Reeves of the same name debuted in 2005. Created in 1985, artist Stephen R. Bissette stated that none of Constantine’s creators will see any pay out from a TV series immediately. The creators apparently did get a pay out for the film but any grosses for a TV series would be down the line. Unlike “Gotham”, NBC has not committed to “Constantine” yet as a series and it could always die during the pilot stage.
This is in addition to “Arrow” starting a second season on The CW with a “Flash” spin-off due down the pipe.
“Wonder Woman” fan film hits internet; shames Warner Brothers?
Timing, as they say, is everything. While DC Entertainment has been busy setting up live action shows to counter “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.E.I.L.D.”, it is also known that Wonder Woman’s second stab at a TV show died in development at The CW back in July. Today, Rainfall TV has created a 2.5 minute fan film based around “Wonder Woman” starring Rileah Vanderbilt and directed by Sam Balcomb. The teaser style real offers a look at the Amazons on Paradise Islands facing off against giant minotaurs as well as Wonder Woman herself taking on thugs. It has gotten a lot of buzz online, including over 307,000 views on YouTube in less than 24 hours.
Fan films can occasionally spark mainstream attention. “Batman: Dead End” was a fan film made in 2003 which debuted at the San Diego Comic Con directed by Sandy Collora. It gained the notice of types like Kevin Smith and Alex Ross as a way to direct Batman in live action at a time when Batman hadn’t been seen on the big screen since “Batman & Robin” at the end of the 90’s. Ultimately, Chris Nolan would go on to direct “Batman Begins” in 2004-2005 and the rest is history. The time is thus right for Balcomb to get some notice with a fan film of his own, which is riding atop the current “why isn’t there a super heroine film” trend online.
“Superman/Batman” is “further along” than everyone knows?
In an interview with the Associated Press, screenwriter David S. Goyer stated that the upcoming “Superman/Batman” film set to star Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck is “further along than […] people realize”. It also seems as if a conflict between the heroes in a “versus” style battle is an inevitable part of the story. If Goyer is true to his word, it seems as if this was in the works while “Man of Steel” was also in development.