Zack Snyder is no stranger to superheroes. Before taking over as the director tasked with launching the DC Extended Universe, Snyder adapted another work of distinction in Alan Moore’s Watchmen, back in 2008.
Moore publicly distanced himself from the project – as he does with most adaptations of his work – but the response from Watchmen fans was mixed, to say the least. Some felt Snyder had not skillfully translated Moore’s irreverence, satire and wit onto the big screen.
The Batman v Superman director was asked by the LA Times about the evolution of R-rated superhero movies, prompted by the success of Deadpool, and Snyder recalled a meeting he had with The Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan as they collaborated on an approach to making 2013’s Man of Steel.
“It’s interesting. When I had my initial meeting with Chris Nolan about doing Man of Steel, he said to me, ‘Watchmen is a movie you made too early.’ Because that movie was written deep into comic-book culture, as a way of exploring the why of heroes within pop culture. Deadpool shows that audiences have now gotten to the point where they can understand the satire of the genre. Before that, audiences were like, “I’m not ready for that. I’m not there yet.”
Ben Affleck, set to debut as the Caped Crusader in Dawn of Justice, added: “Look, in the broad sense, from a long-term portfolio perspective, Warner Bros. has already won. They own this vast underexploited [intellectual property] that is DC. They’re going to make all these movies regardless. Will every DC movie be great and be successful? No. Would it be good if “BvS” works for them? Yes, obviously. But if any one of the movies doesn’t work, it doesn’t mean it all goes away. “Green Lantern” didn’t work, and Green Lantern is going to come back and work for them.
“Zack spent two years of his life on this movie, and we put in months and months. We are truly, deeply invested in this movie. We want the movie to be good. We want to be proud of it. I want to make a movie that my kids think is cool. It’s not just us punching the corporate clock. You know, you get up at 5 and go to work at 6 in the morning and put on the suit. It’s not particularly fun and sexy to roll around in a rubber suit fighting a stunt guy.
It would be interesting to see what Snyder would do at this point in his career with a Watchmen adaptation but with news coming out last October that HBO are considering making a TV show based on the celebrated graphic novel, with Snyder as producer, he may indeed have a second chance.