james wan the flash

James Wan swims into the world of superheroes this week with Aquaman, but things could’ve turned out very differently. According to Wan, Warner Bros. offered him the chance to make either an Aquaman movie, or a film about The Flash. In Wan’s eyes, this was a no brainer: Aquaman all the way. As the filmmaker tells it, making a film about the Atlantean superhero gave him a chance to give audiences something they hadn’t seen before. More on the potential James Wan The Flash movie below.

James Wan’s The Flash? It could’ve happened! The current status of the feature film starring the speedster is unclear – last we heard, John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein were in the running to direct. But at one point, Aquaman director James Wan could’ve helmed the project. Speaking with the New York Times, Wan confirmed that Warner Bros. offered him a shot at two different superhero films: Aquaman or The Flash:

“Having made ‘The Conjuring,’ I was part of the Warner Bros. family, and I knew they were doing their DC thing. I spoke with Kevin Tsujihara [the Warner Bros. chairman and chief executive] at a premiere and I said, ‘I’m interested in the properties that you have at DC.’ A few months later, I was in a general meeting with DC and they floated two properties that didn’t have filmmakers on board: the Flash and Aquaman.”

When it came time to pick one, Wan knew exactly what he wanted to do – Aquaman. Wan has a genre-film background, having helmed The ConjuringInsidious and more, and felt that Aquaman had plenty of genre-film elements he could mine. He also felt that Aquaman would give him a chance to create something fresh for viewers. After all, The Flash has already had two live-action TV shows, whereas Aquaman has remained illusive (a pilot for a Smallville-style Aquaman show was filmed, but never picked up):

“I felt the Flash had been done before. It had been on TV twice at that point. The one that had not been done was Aquaman. I realized, wow, his character resides in this crazy, big world, and I could do something very interesting with it. I look up to people like Spielberg, Cameron, Lucas, John Carpenter. I’m a fan of genre filmmaking, naturally. So I thought I could make ‘Aquaman’ a genre film, meaning a horror monster movie. DC basically said, yes, you can make Aquaman versus sea monsters if that’s what you want.”

Based on the early positive buzz swirling around Aquaman, it looks like Wan made the right choice.

Aquaman dives into theaters December 21, 2018.

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