Frank Miller on His Ideal Batman Movie: “Lose the Toys, Focus on the Mission”

     October 29, 2016


There has been a lot of discussion among Batman fans and DC fans about Zack Snyder‘s take on the iconic character, whose appearance in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was met with mixed reactions, to put it kindly. The fallout from those reactions has seen star Ben Affleck taking the reins with the character as he movies forward post-Justice League, in an attempt to recapture what fans want to see from Batman moving forward.

Now, Frank Miller — who created The Dark Knight Batman comics series — is weighing in on where he would like to see the movie franchise go next. Miller’s take on the character has been the basis for almost everything Batman-related that we’ve seen in the modern movie era. Variety interviewed him at the Lucca Comics & Games meet-up, where he shared his candid thoughts on the film franchise:

My dream would be to make it much smaller. To lose the toys and to focus more on the mission, and to use the city a great deal more. Because he’s got a loving relationship with the city he’s protecting. And unlike Superman his connection to crime is intimate; it has been ever since his parents were murdered. And he defeats criminals with his hands. So it would be a different take. But it will never be in my hands, because it would not be a good place to make toys from. There wouldn’t be a line of toys.


Image via Warner Bros.

Bow down to these truths, folks. There are so many fans who would love to see Batman go back to being a street-level vigilante in a way that would really honor his Detective Comic roots. Batman deserves some noir, and that doesn’t have to mean a constant, gravelly-voiced angst and — perish the thought — him using guns.

Miller also commented on the Batman movie project with director Darren Aronofsky that never was:

That screenplay was based on my book “Batman: Year One,” and yeah it was much more down to earth. In it a fair amount of time is spent before he became Batman, and when he went out and fought crime he really screwed it up a bunch of times before he got it right. So it was 90-minute origins story.

I want to see this. Please, Warner Bros., let this happen at some point. I mean seriously, after everything else we’ve been through with Batman recently, what is there to lose?

Miller was also asked about Batman v Superman, which he acknowledged that he has seen, but wouldn’t say much more about:

I’ll just say: ‘Thanks.’ What can I say? — he laughs — no, actually I’ll withdraw that; I’ll say: ‘You’re welcome!’


Image via Warner Bros.

As for Superman, Miller also has an exciting project planned to explore the heroes’ Jewish origins:

Yes. It’s something I want to do. I’ve only discussed this briefly with DC; it’s not a work in progress. But there is no denying what the actual origins of Superman are. They’ve been clouded over through the years. Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster [who created Superman in 1933] must have been aware that they created him during a time of rampant anti-Semitism. All this was timed in the shadow of a war being waged by the worst anti-Semite the world has ever seen. So I would just like to bring it back home.

When you tell a superhero story you tell it in broad strokes. You don’t sneak you message in. I would love to see the visuals of Superman facing a Panzer tank and the emotional release of him smashing a place like [the] Buchenwald [concentration camp].

Honestly, this is the most excited I’ve been about any Batman or Superman related project in a long, long time. Let us know what you think about Miller’s thoughts in the comments.

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