Darren Aronofsky has a history with comics. His currently-in-prep next movie is The Wolverine, he produced a comic book version of his film The Fountain before getting to shoot the film (but after his first attempt to film it went awry), and he even attempted to get a big-screen version of Batman: Year One, co-scripted with Frank Miller, off of the ground.
It would seem he’s returning to his Fountain playbook for another comics project. Speaking to Clothes on Film he says:
Well, we’re actually doing [a comic]. It hasn’t really been announced, I don’t know if I should give you the scoop! But we’re getting there. We’re doing a comic book of a script that’s really hard to make and we’re going to do a comic version first and see what happens…
It seems like if you come up with an original script, in Hollywood it’s not as effective as a comic book. It doesn’t even have to be successful as a comic; I mean how successful were Kick-Ass or Scott Pilgrim? Those were fringe comics, right, and they were basically turned in to big pictures.
Of course, Kick-Ass was successful, and Scott Pilgrim became a little bit of a phenomenon, even earning mainstream press comparisons to Harry Potter as a hot-cake series that just flew off the shelves and inspired bustling midnight openings.
But the point stands – even some seldom-read, little-known comic books have been turned into movies.
The question, I guess, is which of Aronofsky’s previous, yet-to-be-filmed projects is it that he’s looking to sneak in through the Comic Book pipe? I think we can cross off any projects that didn’t originate with Aronofsky, anything adapted from a novel or a script that was brough to him by the studio…
…and while I’m sure I don’t know one half of what Aronofsky has been cooking up behind closed doors, of the projects I can recall the only good match seems to be Noah.
The idea for the film predates even the production of Pi, Aronofsky’s first feature. He eventually got a script written with Ari Handel, his collaborator on The Fountain and here’s how he described it to The Guardian:
Noah was the first person to plant vineyards and drink wine and get drunk. It’s there in the Bible – it was one of the first things he did when he reached land. There was some real survivor’s guilt going on there. He’s a dark, complicated character.
It’s a great script and it’s huge. And we’re starting to feel out talent. And then we’ll probably try and set it up… It’s the end of the world and it’s the second most famous ship after the Titanic. So I’m not sure why any studio won’t want to make it…
I think it’s really timely because it’s about environmental apocalypse which is the biggest theme, for me, right now for what’s going on on this planet. So I think it’s got these big, big themes that connect with us. Noah was the first environmentalist. He’s a really interesting character. Hopefully they’ll let me make it.
And if they don’t, he’ll go to comics, first of all, where the freedom to be more experimental is greater? Paper’s not cheap, but it sure comes easier than celluloid.
Hopefully more information will be forthcoming on this project. As appealing as Noah sounds, I wouldn’t be surprised if it were something new that never became public before. Either way, we’ll tell you when we find out.