In the post-credits scene of 2017’s Justice League, the costumed mercenary Deathstroke (Joe Mangianello) emerges onto Lex Luthor’s yacht and suggests that if the good guys have their own league, perhaps the villains should have a league of their own. That setup has yet to be paid off in a DC Comics movie, and since the priorities at the studio have shifted, it seems like it never will.
But three years ago, The Raid director Gareth Evans was attached to direct a Deathstroke film which would have told the character’s origin story. Even though that project fell apart, Evans is now spilling some details about what his approach would have been if everything had fallen into place.
Deathstroke Movie Details
While promoting his new series Gangs of London, Evans spoke with Yahoo UK and explained what he wanted to do with the Deathstroke movie that never happened:
“The plan was, I wanted to tell something that would be a lean story, that would be kind of an origin of that character. Something that felt like it could be 100 minutes or 110 minutes long, max – not to go over the two hour period with it. Back then, I was massively influenced by the noir films coming out of South Korea, so that was my pitch. I was like, these films are amazing: the texture, and the tones of colours, the grit and the aggression of them is super interesting to use to tell Deathstroke’s story.”
That does sound pretty damn cool – and I must say, a DC movie clocking in at under two hours would have been refreshing as well after the bloated runtimes of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Aquaman.
Evans admitted that he wasn’t much of a comic book reader before being hired, but he says he did enough research into the character to pinpoint how he wanted to treat Deathstroke’s origin:
“When I read up on it, there were about three different versions of how his character originated,” explains Evans, “And so I thought we could do something quite Shakespearean, in terms of how he loses his eye, and how he gets created as the character that he is…We had ideas of the kind of style that we would have gone for with that, which would have married some of the more grounded style that I have, but then because of the world of it, it would allow me to be a bit more flamboyant and a bit more stylized. We could have taken it in some really interesting areas. We had some pretty bold ideas there that could have been really visceral and really fun.”
Though Evans hasn’t heard anything concrete about the project in years, he didn’t completely slam the door on possibly returning to it someday. He indicated that he might be interested if Warner Bros. and DC became energized about the project again – but considering how Deathstroke seemed to be a lynchpin for a more connected DCEU, that seems unlikely since WB has pivoted to more of a movie-by-movie approach and has become less concerned with every story aligning perfectly with all the others.
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