The Final Lap Issue #10: The Flash DCEU Movie, Take 3 – ‘Creative Differences’
Rumors, twists and madness have surrounded The Flash solo movie since its announcement at San Diego Comic-Con in 2014. We have seen it lose three directors, plot changes, delays galore and the last couple of months have been no different. Now, there is the possibility of the film’s protagonist possibly leaving his Flash ring behind! If these recent murmurs are true and the tales of the Script Wars between Miller and directors Daley and Goldstein are to be believed, this might lead to a huge turning point in this film’s production. Let’s dive into all this bochinche and try to figure out what this could mean for the Scarlet Speedster’s race to the big screen.
If you are reading this, you are a fan of The Flash and have been keeping up with the latest news and updates in regards to the film’s pre-production journey which has been tumultuous to say the least. Though a lot of us received a ray of hope through the release of an interview with Ezra Miller rather recently, were he talks about the movie that the directors, John Francis Daley and Johnathan Goldstein, Ezra himself and the production team were preparing as a gift to the fans; if the recent whispers are validated, that hope is looking dimmer and dimmer by the second.
This dark cloud started to hover through the webs two weeks ago when it was rumored that Ezra Miller and The Flash directors Daley and Goldstein were at a creative impasse. And the differences were such that Ezra had begun writing his own script for The Flash movie alongside comic book legend Grant Morrison with the Studio’s support. The biggest detail of that story to me wasn’t the fact that Ezra was writing his own script; but that his tenure as The Flash could be linked to the studio’s decision of whether or not to use his and Morrison’s script over the directors’ treatment.
Now, the word on the street is that Ezra’s might be the losing party of these Script Wars and we may have a lost our Barry Allen, whether by the actor’s own volition or the studio’s mandate. From a project that seemed to be picking up steam towards its long-awaited finish line to it possibly losing its protagonist is bonkers!
Now, how did we get here? Run a lap with me…
My time at Revenge of the Fans and learning from my cousin’s (EIC of Revenge of the Fans, Mario-Francisco Robles) work at the site and in his podcasts, The Fanboy and The Revengers, have taught me many things about the film industry from a production and marketing standpoint. One of those lessons is that just because we are now hearing about a piece of gossip or news from the trades or the studio, that doesn’t mean that these rumblings have not been occurring for months behind-the-scenes. We are simply just hearing about it now. A perfect example of this is the Ezra interview that was conducted during the press tour for Fantastic Beasts 2. Though the video was released late February, press tours pre-date theatrical runs. This means that the interview that we witnessed in February actually occurred around the film’s release which was November of last year.
Though many fans were excited to hear Ezra’s words on The Flash movie during that interview, my feelings were mixed (hear my thoughts on Ezra’s comments on The Scarlet Fan Unplugged Ep.2) and I kept my expectations tempered. But with the revelations that came in the advent of the Script Wars rumor (trademark pending) and the creative differences that were behind them; it makes me wonder if the comments made by Ezra about The Flash movie in that interview were not a shared vision, but actually his own! What if Ezra has been pushing for the multiverse angle and a darker tone, but the directors’ have strongly opposed it? The DC Multiverse is a very complex animal that can serve for a dense and sci-fi driven story; but I can imagine how daunting it could be to explore it as a franchise starter, which is what the first The Flash movie should aim to be. Ezra Miller is great actor and known comic book fan. After the scraps that were given to his character in the DCEU so far, I can understand him advocating for these dense and other worldly themes. The actor seems to believe that The Flash deserves his due, which could explain him going to these lengths to tell the story that he believes the character deserves; as opposed to the lighter fare that Daley and Goldstein have apparently prepared.
The piece that makes this whole idea plausible is Mr. Grant Morrison himself. Not only are Miller and Morrison known acquaintances: but Morrison is credited for helping sketch out the modern DC Multiverse which makes him a powerful ally in making the multiversity-of-it-all in Miller’s script work, with all the nuance and complexity that goes with it. Though writing a script with comic book royalty can be seen as an ace up Ezra’s sleeve, one could see how executives can view such themes and ideas as a step backwards towards the Snyder-Versian undertones that they are trying to move away from.
If the fallout ends up being what we all suspect at this point, it would make Miller the third DC leading man to be “dismissed” for fighting over creative control of their character, considering that Ben Affleck (Batman) officially, and Henry Cavill (Superman) presumably have gone through the same thing. Which would be a shame.
Now, what could this all mean for The Flash movie?
Here are my thoughts:
- Though the studio had hired Daley and Goldstein as directors and gave them a shot at the script, the studio either wasn’t entirely happy with it enough that they would give Ezra a shot at it unless they were simply trying to appease the actor due to his relationship to the studio.
- These creative differences are not only between the directors and Miller; but could also be between the studio, the directors and producers, which in turn explains why the buzz around it continues to die down as soon as it appears to be moving forward.
- With the fallout of Justice League, the WB/DC renaissance birthed by Aquaman‘s success and the studio push for a filmmaker-driven landscape; the studio still hasn’t found a place for The Flash movie to fit in. The film has been through so many identity shifts that no knows what it should or needs to be yet and it’s still lost in the Speed Force.
- If the studio really wasn’t satisfied with Daley and Goldstein’s take: could they walk away from the project as well if the studio decides to meddle or will WB/DC really trust their vision as they continue to state that they are striving to be filmmaker-driven studio?
- If Ezra is out, how long will it take to cast a new Barry Allen/The Flash and how will affect the rumored production start date of November 2019? Is this date still a thing? It could be, if the script is officially finalized and a new actor is cast promptly. That being said, The Flash is still not part of the official slate of films up to 2021.
- If Ezra leaves, I can see The Flash being a soft-reboot of the character that forgets all the Justice League shenanigans with a completely new cast.
Personally, I am not a fan of all the hardships that this film has gone through; but I am grateful that they have all happened while the film is still in pre-production. We would be having another Justice League situation if WB/DC were trying to fast-tracking this movie like they did that one. If you have read my previous issues on The Flash movie (Issues #4 and #9), you are well aware that I love Ezra Miller as an actor, how I trust that he can give us an amazing performance as The Crimsom Comet and why the Barry Allen we met in JL was not comic book Barry Allen/The Flash. I’ve also stated how The Flash solo film should be a personal and grounded story that centers on Barry entirely as a CSI for Central City Police Department and as a hero. It is my hope for the perfect Flash movie that helps me as I patiently wait for the truth about Miller, the directors and the production start date to come out.
My biggest concern with The Flash movie as of right now, considering that Ezra Miller might vacate the role, is what Daley and Goldstein’s take on the character is going to be. Though I loved Spiderman: Homecoming, which was written by the directors; I hope that they don’t attempt to translate the lightheartedness that relates to Peter Parker’s naïve and teenage worldview or even the quirkiness that distinguishes him within the MCU. Barry Allen is a man on a mission that experiences the world from very different lens than that of a high school hero. With the disappoint that I found in Justice League’s version of The Flash; I pray that Daley and Goldstein look to emulate the source material as a course correction or a reboot of the character and that the Studio does not reinforce the pre-established version, truly allowing the directors’ vision lead the race.
That’s all I got, fellow speedsters! What are your thoughts in regards to all the madness that has surrounded the Flash movie in the last 4-5 years? Do you think that the script will be ready for November? Will Ezra Miller leave or stay? Share your comments on the comments section below or find me on twitter.
If you enjoy The Final Lap column here at RevengeofTheFans.com and want to hear my crazy thoughts and theories in a more unfiltered setting, check out my Flash-Centric Podcast, The Scarlet Fan Unplugged. On these recordings, I share more insight on already existing theories from different issues of The Final Lap column among other original takes exclusively for the pod, share my thoughts on Flash news and take listener questions from awesome people like you. It doesn’t have a fixed schedule since I record only when there is something special to share; but it does expand The Final Lap in a way that I believe to be fitting. If you are up for a tour to my special corner of the Speed Force Check it out The Scarlet Fan Unplugged.
Thanks for reading,
And as always, I’ll see you at the finish line,
The Scarlet Fan