Saturday at the Los Angeles Times Hero Complex Festival, Guillermo del Toro was on hand to discuss his two greatest and most personal films: The Devil’s Backbone and Pan’s Labyrinth. During the far-reaching conversation Del Toro gave updates on the currently in development Justice League Dark and the status of his HBO series Monster (based on the Japanese manga by author Naoki Urasawa).
On Justice League Dark, Del Toro revealed that his script features Constantine, The Swamp Thing, Madame Xanadu, Deadman and Zantanna as the team. He stated that there are other characters in the mix too (“everybody that doesn’t feel like a repeat”) – but any additional info would be too ‘spoilery’ for the hypothetical film. However Del Toro is still waiting for the go-ahead from Warner Brothers (perhaps box-office returns on Man of Steel and Pacific Rim will dictate it’s fate). Per Del Toro “If they [Warners] like the [script], I’ll do it; if not…” For additional highlights from the Q&A including an update on Monster and an all new trailer for his summer tent-pole robots-vs.-monsters flick Pacific Rim, hit the jump.
On Monster, Del Toro said that he just submitted the pilot script to HBO last week and that they’re reading it right now. He revealed his version is very respectful of Urasawa’s manga. Del Toro gained permission from Urasawa to adapt his work, only if he submitted to the author an outline for each episode of the theoretical first season. Del Toro was quick to chime that the series would have a short shelf life – as it will strictly follow the manga’s 18 volumes, nothing added to increase seasons or episode count.
After screening The Devil’s Backbone (a film Del Toro affectionately calls his first film*), a new trailer for Pacific Rim played to the attentive audience. The new trailer was mostly re-contextualized footage from the WonderCon 2013 trailer: the winged kaiju, the Jaeger hitting the alien/monster with a boat, Idris Elba’s ‘Cancel the Apocalypse’ line, etc… Among the new footage shown, a couple more brief glances of Ron Perlman’s character Hannibal Chau – who seems to share more than a few scenes with Charlie Day’s Dr. Newton Geiszler. The trailer featured a bit more of Charlie Day than previous iterations as he looks up pensively at the action unfolding around him, ducks, hides, stares off in the snow Perlman at his side, and of course offers up the obligatory “This is going to be awesome” line/hopeful merit indication. All-in-all another successful bit of marketing for Pacific Rim; but to be fair how the hell could you mismarket monsters-vs.-robots?
*Technically The Devil’s Backbone is Del Toro’s third film; but the filmmaker offered that Cronos (technically #1) is only 50% the movie he wanted to make due to budgetary restrictions and inexperience. On Mimic (technically #2) Del Toro not so affectionately compared the experience making the movie to “being in prison and bending over in the shower.” The Devil’s Backbone is the first film, Del Toro claims, to be 100% him – and for this reason it is the first true Guillermo del Toro feature.