As we know, the winner was Zack Snyder, and his film will be in thousands and thousands of cinemas just two days from now. We’ve been talking about it an awful lot lately.
But losing out, and apparently by a rather narrow margin, was Darren Aronofsky, director of Pi, Requiem For A Dream, Black Swan.
As it happens, this wasn’t the first time Aronofsky almost but didn’t quite make a comic book movie, with a version of Batman: Year One in the works for quite a while and some months spent on The Wolverine before he left the project.
But why not Aronosky this time?
The Hollywood Reporter believe that they know, and fold the answer into their new report on “studio loyalty to talent.” And there’s your clue.
This is the big chunk that addresses the issue:
Over at Warner Bros., studio chief Jeff Robinov‘s fierce loyalty to director Zack Snyder is being tested June 14 with the $225 million Man of Steel. The relationship dates to the 2007 hit 300, even though Snyder’s three subsequent Warners films – Watchmen, Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole and Sucker Punch – disappointed. However, while giving him Man of Steel (over the other finalist, Darren Aronofsky), Robinov took out insurance with producer Christopher Nolan, the studio’s most important filmmaker (Batman, Inception). “Chris had the confidence in Zack, and based on the movie I’ve seen, Chris was spot-on,” says Warners president of domestic distribution Dan Fellman.
So, in short, they trusted Snyder and felt loyalty to him, and they trusted Nolan and felt loyalty to him too, and Nolan trusted Snyder.
And nobody was there to big-up Aronofsky.
It’s not clear if this leaves Aronofsky in pole position for another Warner Bros.’ DC Universe movie, if such things actually come into being*, but I suppose the signs are good.
Snyder, meanwhile, seems to have won himself even more trust at the studio with Man of Steel. Thatt’s fair. The boy done good.
Aronofsky’s next movie, Noah, will be along next year. It’s a comic book movie without being a comic book adaptation – part of the film’s story was adapted into a couple of albums, so far released in France but apparently not in English. I dare say we’ll be seeing those go a lot wider when the movie is out.
*They will, they will. I’m sure of it now.