Last week we got some VALIANT movie news related to Harbinger and Bloodshot where I expressed caution to VALIANT fans who have been hearing rumors about films forever, from Matthew Vaughn circling Bloodshot to J. Michael Straczynski writing a Shadowman script, a property I think could work, even if the comics themselves have been at best so-so. This week we have VALIANT’s boss dropping that he wishes someone would drop who is attached to direct X-O Manowar. What can we take from this?
Comicbook.com is citing something called Variant Comics where Dinesh Shamdasani dropped a hint that a X-O Manowar movie may be further along than anyone has expected, even dropping that director(S) were attached and that:
“but I can say that I wish that the directors on X-O Manowar would leak so that I could talk about them, because not only are they mind-blowingly awesome, the things they’re doing with X-O Manowar will make fanboy heads explode. It’s some really cool stuff, but I can’t say any more than that.”
If we assume that Dinesh did not merely misspeak or was misheard, or the transcript of an interview is not an error (which would be egregious considering both “them” and “they” are used along with “directors”), we know that there are two directors involved.
In my previous post I mentioned that until a director is named and shooting date is set a movie isn’t really a movie until you get a reputation of getting movies out (like say Mark Millar) so unless duplicity is involved, there are apparently not only directors attached but they have shown Dinesh something they have done with it.
Dinesh expresses excitement specifically not on the movie being announced but the directors leaking, as if they would mean something to us if they did, which narrows downs a list by a lot of you don’t want to disappoint fans just to be in the news cycle for a short time before NYCC. So let’s dig into this.
First, let’s all take a pause and hope it’s not the Brother’s Strause. They have done work on major films but the ones they have directed themselves were objectively awful. They certainly know their way around CGI and effects but assuming X-O has to look cool regardless, an X-O Manowar movie is going to succeed on whether or not we buy Aric out of armor.
The obvious 2 big fish in the room are Lord and Miller and the Russo Bros, both would be really mindblowing, to use Dinesh’s term but both are also booked for awhile, they have something called Star Wars and Avengers Infinity lined up.
Another crazy coup would be the Coen Brothers, but they tend to produce, direct and write their projects. They are incredibly talented and would give VALIANT instant credibility in the film industry, and they make movies for cheap. They also draw major talent and find young talent to boot and they may be a perfect choice and I don’t see another announced project but I’d be blown away if VALIANT landed the Coen brothers. It would be parade worthy if this was announced, these guys are legit masters of film.
More likely maybe The Wachowskis, who have been living off of Matrix cred for awhile now, even though they have some interesting projects since then (Cloud Atlas, Speed Racer, Jupiter Ascending) that don’t end making back their money, though V for Vendetta was solid. I would die to see Geoff Darrow storyboards for VALIANT movies though. They could use a hit and I don’t think they have anything scheduled.
I saw someone mention the Duplass brothers. This would be pretty crazy but no less crazy than the ascension of the Russos or Lord and Miller. The Duplass brothers famously make and fund indie movies and shows and have a bunch of projects all the time, including a new HBO show next year, and they have a netflix deal in place. It doesn’t seem to be in their sensibilities at all.
There are a few other duos that have at least some name recognition. Chris & Paul Weitz who made American Pie and About a Boy together. I don’t think they work together anymore as duo directors though. That said, of the two, Chris has directed both The Golden Compass and Twilight and has his hands in genre stuff like trying to get a Elric film off the ground and working with Grant Morrison.
There is also Neveldine and Taylor which would be a pretty good pick if you want to end up on the How Did This Get Made? podcast. Pass for me.
You also have the Farrelly Brothers who seem unlikely.
The last remaining duo that I think people may have heard of are the Hughes Brothers. This would be pretty interesting to me, they did Book of Eli, and a couple of childhood faves of mine in Menace to Society and Dead Presidents and have dipped into comic books before with From Hell.
For now, I’d just wait until it hits Deadline, Variety, or THR. Those are relationships people don’t want to burn with non-stories, so maybe we hear something at NYCC. I’m trying to get VALIANT into some of my annual Top 10 Movie lists, so fingers crossed. For years X-O was always the movie, along with Bloodshot, that people thought was a natural kickoff title for a VALIANT movie. It was the first new VALIANT comic released, as well as the first original to VALIANT title released in the ’90s (Rai was the first character in the pages of Magnus).
And oh guys, Tom Hardy. Let’s do it.