With Dark Horse’s announcement that the unmade Aliens 3 movie will be released as a graphic novel, it got me thinking about other unmade movies that should be adapted as graphic novels.
Alejandro Jodorowsky’s vision for Dune is unparalleled and inspired generations of science fiction artists despite not being made. Jodorowsky has been successfully making comics for years and finally adapting Dune as a graphic novel would be a lifetime achievement. One has only to watch the documentary about Jodorowsky’s Dune to want to read the whole story. Jodorowsky is coming out with a graphic novel sequel to El Topo, so revisiting Dune could be a possibility.
Superman Lives was a film adaption of the death and return of Superman directed by Tim Burton and starring Nicolas Cage. In Superman Lives, our hero fights Brainiac, Doomsday, ninjas, and even a giant alien spider (seen above). There’s another documentary about how this project rose and fell.
Superman Lives is more than just a dark and weird take on the character. Rather than the flawless golden boy, Burton’s vision for Superman was that of the nuanced outsider who was terrified of his own destructive power. Burton’s vision for Doomsday is a multi-headed manifestation of Clark Kent’s social problems. Superman is killed by a physical representation of his identity crisis. He’s then reborn like a pharaoh rising from a sarcophagus in black armor and ready to save the world.
Darren Aronovsky was slated to direct a Batman: Year One movie with a script written by Frank Miller. However, I’d rather see what Aronovsky would do with the caped crusader if given free reign. Aronovsky has written graphic novels before releasing comic adaptations for Noah and The Fountain in tandem with the films.
What makes Aronovsky a great fit for Batman is that his stories are always unsettling and bizarre, but never dumb. That combination is almost unheard of in the superhero genre. Directors usually embrace the weirdness and play it as comedy as in The Lego Batman Movie or directors strip away the weird elements and ground it in reality as in the Dark Knight Trilogy. What Aronovsky could bring to the character is the sense of madness, surrealism, and naturalistic horror.