Q & A 27: What’s your dream comic book movie adaptation?

In Q & A, a weekly feature of Fantastic Fangirls, we ask our staff to tackle a simple question — then open the floor to comments.

What’s your dream comic book movie adaptation?


A while ago, when Joss Whedon was going to write and direct the Wonder Woman movie, someone suggested Gina Torres as Diana. This is genius. Okay, she does not precisely resemble the comic book character design, but she is easily believable as an amazon princess and Diana is made out of clay and lightning. She is certainly my favorite of everyone suggested, seriously or not (Megan Fox = No). But the movie is stalled and as it turns out Gina is 40 years old, which is at least considered too old. That said a Wonder Woman movie is still conceivable so my dream (or at least fantasy) adaptation is something else.

I would like a movie based on Young Justice/Teen Titans, specifically the Superboy, Wonder Girl and Robin triad. It would be directed by Alfonso Cuarón whose works include Y tu mamá también, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, A Little Princess, and Children of Men (all of which I love). As that list illustrates he absolutely excels at coming of age stories, love triangles and serious drama with an action flair. He’s also skilled in making the atmosphere the action takes place in into a character in itself, something I feel every comic book drama should have.

I love this idea so much I want to pitch it to Warner Brothers.


Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull isn’t much of anybody’s favorite movie. It’s certainly not one of the better movies I saw last year. But there’s a brief stretch before Jones and Company head off to the jungle, which takes place on an American college campus in the 1950’s, where Stephen Spielberg’s direction just sparkles. Spielberg’s affinity for the World War II era, and for futuristic vistas, is well-known. But that glimpse of ’50s America reminded me of the Twilight Zone-inspired Amazing Stories series I loved as a kid.
I’d love to see Spielberg sink his teeth into the late-’50s/early ’60s era of America for a feature-length film, and that era just happens to coincide with the dawn of both space exploration and the Silver Age of comics. Writer/artist Darwyn Cooke realized that when he created the New Frontier series, and, while there’s been a great animated version of New Frontier, I can’t help imagining what Spielberg could do with a live-action version of that project. Alternatively — maybe even better — I’d like to see him tackle a ’50s/’60s version of the Green Lantern story. A Hal Jordan-GL movie is supposedly in the works right now, and I’m sure there will be all kinds of attempts to update it and thus “make it relevant.” All I can say about that, is, please don’t. But then, I’m a sucker for the ’50s.


I want a movie about the Marvel Universe.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m thrilled that Marvel is moving in this direction with its plans for an Avengers movie, incorporating characters from several solo films. But what I would love to see — in my dreams, since I know this isn’t in any way financially or creatively feasible — is a movie that shows the full scope of the universe, with cameos (at least) from every major character. I want Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man to be able to hang out with Chris Evans’ Johnny Storm; I want Ioan Gruffudd’s Reed Richards to work with Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark to solve a scientific problem; I want Wanda and Pietro Maximoff brought in to act as ties between the mutant universe of the X-Men and the larger universe of the Avengers. I want to see Joe Pantoliano’s Ben Urich working for the Daily Bugle, not the New York Post, and I want SHIELD to watch over it all, interfering where they feel it’s necessary.

I don’t know what the story of my dream movie would be. It could be a pre-established story, like Secret Wars or even Civil War, or it could be something entirely new, invented for the film. Either way, it would be a thrill to see live-action versions of all of these characters I love interacting, and it’s a shame that rights issues and the necessity of accessibilty for a wider (i.e. non-nerd) audience mean that it can never really happen.


That’s dead easy. My dream comic book movie adaptation is a movie based on a comic I write.

However! Other than that, I want:

1. Guillermo del Toro’s “A Game of You,” from Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. That’s right, del Toro — who created Pan’s Labyrinth. If ever there was a director who understands how freaking creepy imaginary worlds are, it’s del Toro.

2. Jane Espenson’s reimagining of Chris Claremont’s “Dark Phoenix Saga,” produced and directed by Ronald D. Moore. Jane would get the dialog to snap, get the character moments to sparkle, would make every scene do two or three things at once. Ron Moore would make the Hellfire Club look sexy and evil, make the moon look alien, make the Shi’ar frightening and not so much like weird feathered humans.

3. Nora Ephron and Ron Howard’s Dykes to Watch Out For. Ephron’s comic timing on Bechdel’s dialogue? Howard’s gift for making prickly characters vulnerable and appealing? Just think on it. Pure genius.

So what about you? What’s your dream comic book movie adaptation?

  • Hmmm. I think I’d like to see a “Marvels” movie adaptation. I think it’d be a great way to see the history of superheroes seen through the eyes of a reporter. And I’m still waiting for decent renditions of Dr. Doom and Galactus on the big screen :(

  • Dan

    These are all great ideas. (Although, as much as I loved the FANTASTIC FOUR movies, I don’t need to see Ioan’s Reed Richards ever, ever again. Recast!)

    I’d love to see a TITANS movie, whether it’s the Tim/Connor/Cass era or the Dick/Wally/Donna era.

    Ironically, I think a movie based on the “New World Order” arc from JLA could be incredible. The irony being, of course, that it’s written by Grant Morrison and has one of the coolest Batman moments of the last 10 years or so.

    And, finally, I might be the only person on the planet who wants a POWER PACK movie. But, it has to be classic PACK. Little kids. Horse aliens. Original power allocations.

  • handyhunter

    I don’t think I have any dream comic book movie adaptations, but I would possibly watch an Alias (Jessica Jones, not Sidney Bristow) movie. And Deadpool, of course.

  • DreamWing

    It would have to be a TV show I think; but Joss Whedon doing Runaways would be beyond wonderful as far as I’m concerned. He wouldn’t have to work that hard through the first couple seasons. Just adapt the comics to TV and he’d have plenty of time for the five billion other projects he’s always involved in.

  • TEEN TITANS. Seriously, it would work so well! Raven has to summon a group of teen heroes to fight her demon father because the adults won’t take her seriously! And they also have to deal with becoming a team! And there are wacky hijinks along the way! And betrayal. And it would be wonderful.

  • @euthanatos Oh, a Marvels movie would be EXCELLENT. I’d definitely be interested in that.

    @Dan I’d see a Power Pack movie, though I admit I’m glad that Dakota Fanning has aged out of any potential role as Katie.

    @handyhunter Oh, Alias, yes! Ever since I saw that fan film on YouTube, I’ve been craving that.

    @DreamWing Didn’t they announce a Runaways project? Of course, a potential Whedon version would be awesome, but I’m excited to see if a version gets made at all!

    @Margot Awww, awesome. I’ll be reading the Judas Contract soon and will tell you what I think of my first Titans experience.

    I would totally see Caroline and Anika (Cuaron!) and Sigrid’s movies, too. Everyone has had great ideas.

  • @Jennifer & @Dan POWER PACK MOVIE! Oh goodness, he beat me to suggesting it. Personally, I think Sammi Hanratty or maybe even Elle Fanning (because Elle is adorably hyperactive) would make wonderful Katies.

    @Dan I completely agree about Ioan. Actually, I’d love to see a reboot FF further down the line.

  • When I saw the title to your post from Twitter, my first thought would be a Teen Titans movie, so I agree!!

  • Wally East

    I do love Kingdom Come. I’d have Victor Garber as the Rev. Norm McKay. This would be the opportunity to use someone older in a lot of hero roles. Mark Hamil as Batman. Brooke Shields as Wonder Woman. I’m not sure for Superman. Wil Wheaton, of course, as Billy Batson/Captain Marvel.

    Peter Jackson directs and makes all of the landscapes gorgeous, from Clark’s farm retreat to the blown apart Kansas landscape to the seething rage in the Gulag.

  • Wes Anderson’s Doom Patrol.

  • sigrid

    @Paul Montgomery Zomg. That would be awesome.

  • Cash

    Quentin Tarantino directing Kyle Baker’s Why I Hate Saturn.

    It’s got everything. Crackling dialogue. Pointed snark. Crowded bars. Chicks in spacesuits carrying bazookas. Okay, not quite as much blood as the typical QT flick, but it would be a treat from start to finish.

  • Dave

    I know Spider-Man has already been done, but I think the “Kraven’s Last Hunt” storyline would make an amazing movie if done correctly. I doubt it’ll ever happen though because I think that’s a little too dark of a story for such a mainstream character.

    Other than that I think a movie based on the original Shadowhawk (Paul Johnstone) would be extremely cool. Spine-breaking vigilante heroes are few and far between.