Marc Guggenheim is a busy, busy man. One of the Arrowverse’s chief architects was just set on the script for Sony’s Jackpot movie yesterday, but what does that mean for his adaptation of Rob Liefield‘s Prophet? When Guggenheim hopped on the phone with Collider’s Christina Radish to talk Legends of Tomorrow, the writer also offered an update on his big-screen superhero project.
Guggenheim is still plugging away at Prophet—which is set up at Jeff Robinov‘s Studio 8—and trying to find a unique way into the crowded comic book movie world.
“It’s, how do you be original, and how do you not make it feel derivative? That way that I tend to look at superhero movies, both as a writer and as a viewer and audience member is that I now think of superheroes as its own sub-genre. You can do a superhero movie that feels like a Western, or you can do a superhero movie that feels like a horror movie. If you approach it with that in mind, you can avoid things that have become cliche. But you always have to find the thing that makes the character unique and different, and that’s what will make the movie unique and different. Another way of putting it is, why does this character have to get adapted into a movie? What is it about this character that is different from all of the other characters that you could be making a movie about, or all the other characters that have already had movies made about them?”
Prophet, a character that first showed up in Liefeld’s Youngblood series, is a genetically-enhanced super-soldier who wakes up in our modern-day from cryogenic sleep. He also just happens to be the result of Nazi experiments, which Guggenheim finds to be an interesting moral dilemma for the character.
“Interestingly enough, in the comics and in my adaptation, he was created by the Nazis. My goal with the movie is to place him in a position where he has to face very similar, almost parallel moral questions. I’m a big fan of stories that place the hero on the horns of an ethical and moral dilemma. Having come out of great evil, to then have to go and face a new form of that evil, is very interesting to me. I’m being vague because I don’t wanna get too specific about my take.”
In the comics, Prophet often teams up with fellow suped-up soldier Cable—portrayed in 2018 by Josh Brolin in Deadpool 2—but a live-action reunion seems unlikely, given the various character rights. But still, Guggenheim says “conversations” have been had about creating some kind of shared universe with Prophet. But first, he has to make his own Iron Man.
“Certainly, those conversations have been had, and whenever they’re had, I always say the same thing, which is that I think the biggest mistake a lot of people make is they run before they can walk. The reason the Marvel Cinematic Universe exists is because they made one good movie. They made Iron Man. And then, they made another good movie, and another good movie after that. So, while I’d be lying, if I said that we never discussed the possibility of a larger cinematic universe, I’m a firm believer that you don’t truly talk about that stuff, until you have the bones of just a very good, independent, standalone film.”
Be on the look-out for the rest of our conversation with Guggenheim next week. For now, here is what he had to say about Ruby Rose departing Batwoman before season 2.