James Mangold in Early Talks To Direct ‘Swamp Thing’ For DC Studios

James Mangold (Walk The Line, Ford v Ferrari) is reportedly in talks to direct a new version of Swamp Thing for DC Studios. James Gunn and Peter Safran have recently taken over the superhero-based subsidiary of Warner Bros., and Mangold, as a longtime fan of the comics, approached them with his idea for the project.

Mangold’s interest in Swamp Thing comes just days after Gunn and Safran announced the first 10 film and TV titles within the rebooted DC Universe. The co-chiefs explained that these films make up Chapter 1 of the DCU, which they are calling ‘Gods and Monsters.’

Swamp Thing was created by writer Len Wein and horror artist Bernie Wrightson, and first appeared in a standalone story in 1971’s House of Secrets No. 92. That was followed by a popular run under Alan Moore, Stephen Bissette, and John Totleben in the 1980s.

The character first appeared on the big screen in 1982’s Swamp Thing, directed by horror legend Wes Craven, and most recently headlined a short-lived series created by Gary Dauberman and Mark Verheiden for the DC Universe streaming service in 2019. He also appeared in Season 3 of HBO Max’s animated series Harley Quinn, as a vegan health-nut voiced by Sam Richardson.

There’s no word on what this version of Swamp Thing would look like. But Mangold is no stranger to comic book movies, having directed Logan not too long ago, which is widely considered to be the best of the X-Men movies. So there should be plenty of trust in him if this project does indeed move forward.

The problem right now is that Mangold’s a little busy right now. The fifth Indiana Jones film, which he has taken over directing duties from Steven Spielberg, is due to arrive in May, while he’s also working on Searchlight’s Bob Dylan biopic A Complete Unknown, which is set to star Timothée Chalamet.

We’ll wait and see what happens with Swamp Thing. It doesn’t feel like a key title for Stage 1 on Gunn/Safran’s new DC Universe, but it’s sometimes surprising what films and characters become hits with audiences. It’s possible Swamp Thing turns out to be DC’s Hulk.


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