Marvel and DC Run the Show—Time for a Change?
As I’m sure we are all aware, comics-based movies are taking theaters by storm. Marvel and DC command much of the popularity within this genre, but are there titles and characters that could benefit from film adaptations that aren’t from Marvel or DC?
I have a few ideas.
Yes, I’m aware he’s now in DC’s New 52. However, he had a large following before then, and for good reason. Midnighter would be a great character to see on the big, live-action screen. He’s violent, dark, and smart. He enjoys killing his enemies, he’s unstable, and (for an added bonus) he’s gay. He was one of the first comic book characters ever to be canonized as a homosexual and married. In a time where audiences and fans are looking for a more inclusive environment in films, we should not overlook Midnighter’s importance.
Not only that, but people seem to be gravitating to more complex, darker, anti-hero types. Netflix’s Daredevil and Jessica Jones serve as great examples, as well as Deadpool. The revival in the popularity of The Joker and Harley Quinn, Christopher Nolan’s darker, more realistic take on Batman in the Dark Knight trilogy, the Kick-Ass films—the list could go on. Midnighter definitely has the potential to be a new favorite, but could it happen?
Harbinger is an easy pick for a film adaptation (and series). Harbinger follows a group of super-powered outcast teenagers. We love our misfit young heroes, especially with Stranger Things killing it on the sci-fi scene. Harbinger would be an easy win with audiences. Also, it is slated for production later in 2018! So maybe I cheated with this one, but I can’t overstate my excitement. Harbinger has some great potential.
Fallout/Elder Scrolls (Bethesda Softworks)
I know they’re not comic properties, but hear me out on this one. I know video-game based films are almost a sure-fire flop, but the Fallout and Elder Scrolls series have two of the most interesting, lore-filled worlds in any video game. A film could be set in dozens of post-apocalyptic Earth locations or the many places in Tamriel. The sights, sounds, action, creatures, and various storylines would be perfect for big-budget films. Not only that, the plethora of different locations to explore, sequels could all be anthology films. Like the games, each could be independent. Either of these properties could be a great series.
Star Wars Expanded Universe (LucasArts/Disney)
With the arrival of the sequel trilogy in 2015, a lot of the Expanded Universe titles were stripped of their previously-canon storylines. However, there are plenty of Star Wars novels and comic properties that could do very well to be re-canonized on the big screen. Boba Fett’s fate is one long speculated about; his untimely, pathetic death in Episode VI didn’t seem fitting and there are existing stories that tell of the famed bounty hunter’s survival. This is just one of the many existing Star Wars properties that could be explored in the future.
More Manga/Anime Adaptations
Japanese anime has skyrocketed in popularity recently. With a Death Note film, a new FullMetal Alchemist movie, Ghost in the Shell, these stories within this medium can do a lot of good. I’m not saying that the movies I just listed are all winners, but there is something special about these titles coming to the big screen. There are a lot of properties to explore and give the great live-action treatment I think many deserve. As long as they’re properly cast, I think we’ll see the number of manga-to-film adaptations continue to grow, and I’m really excited about it.
I know there are many properties that could be great films today. I know a lot of passionate readers and movie-goers would like the see their favorite non-Marvel/DC characters take the spotlight. This short list is merely a handful of my own choices for film adaptations. I know there are many I didn’t list. As the comic genre of film continues to grow, so will its options. We as fans need to be clear that we have diverse interests and show production companies that we will be there to support our favorite “underground” comics heroes.