Why Frank Miller Changed His Mind About Zack Snyder's DC Movies

Zack Snyder's first comic book movie was "300," an adaptation of the Dark Horse series of the same name, written and illustrated by Frank Miller. "300" came out 15 years ago, before Snyder ever tackled DC Comics properties such as "Watchmen," "Man of Steel," and "Justice League." Snyder hasn't been shy about his love for Miller's comics, but until now, we haven't heard much of what Miller had to say about Snyder's movies.

In a recent podcast appearance (via ComicBook.com), Miller finally aired some of his thoughts about the give-and-take between his comics work and Hollywood. Specifically, he discussed his influential 1986 miniseries, "The Dark Knight Returns," which informed the costume design and other aspects of "Batman v Superman."

Here's what Miller had to say about his comics inspiring films like Snyder's:

"I really gotta say about that—a few years have gone by since all this started, okay? And at first, my reaction was to be very territorial and all that. And now I've kind of sat back and with a much deeper breath and longer view on the whole thing and all I can say is: this is great.

"I mean, I came in and I came up with my idea for The Dark Knight Returns and that basically was the big splash I made, which started my whole career going. And since then I've seen the two fields collaborate back and forth. I benefited greatly from Dark Knight Returns and so have they and continue to. And it can only be looked at as a healthy relationship."

Miller's Own Forays Into Filmmaking

Of course, Miller isn't just some creator who has watched from afar as his comics were mined for movie material. The year before "300" hit, he himself was credited as a co-director with Robert Rodriguez on "Sin City," which remains one of the most faithful and unique comics-to-film adaptations of the 2000s. By approaching "Sin City" as a translation rather than a loose adaptation (like so many other comic book movies), Rodriguez and Miller were able to offer something new stylistically.

"Sin City" blazed a trail for "300," and it opened the door for Miller to direct his own neo-noir adaptation of the comic strip, "The Spirit." That film was poorly received, as was the belated "Sin City" sequel, "A Dame to Kill for," which Miller again co-directed with Rodriguez. Beyond the first "Sin City," Miller hasn't had much luck in Hollywood, with his scripts for "Robocop 2" and "Robocop 3" having yielded two old '90s sequels that are not very well-regarded, either.

He's also courted controversy over the years and suffered a creative decline in comics. Yet his early work inspired some of Netflix's "Daredevil" series, and it continues to inspire filmmakers like Matt Reeves, who cited Miller and David Mazzuchelli's "Batman: Year One," as one of the three biggest inspirations for his film, "The Batman," due out next year.

As for Snyder, he still hopes to make a proper adaptation of "The Dark Knight Returns" someday, but right now, his plate is full with zombies and his Netflix sci-fi epic, "Rebel Moon."