David Goyer is coming fresh off the success of The Tomorrow War and looking to the future with Apple TV+’s Foundation and an adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s graphic novel Sandman for Netflix, but that doesn’t mean he’s not willing to look back on past projects. During a chat with “The Hollywood Reporter“, Goyer looks back on the debacle of Blade: Trinity, what did or didn’t happen during his clash with Wesley Snipes, THE DARK KNIGHT, and Man of Steel, to name a few.
Speaking on Blade: Trinity, Goyer is asked if Patton Oswalt’s story about Wesley Snipes trying to strangle the director on set is true. Goyer doesn’t exactly confirm the story but he does make it clear that he and Wesley Snipes are no longer friends while indicating that Blade: Trinity was a very troubled shoot:
“Let’s just say I have tremendous respect for Wesley as an actor. He used to be a friend. We’re not friends anymore. I am friends with Patton, and I worked with Patton since, so … I don’t think anyone involved in that film had a good experience on that film. Certainly, I didn’t. I don’t think anybody involved with that film is happy with the results. It was a very tortured production.”
Sounds like he’s saying a lot without confirming if the alleged attempted strangulation was true. The Blade: Trinity shoot was said to be very troubled and is the stuff of legend now and Goyer doesn’t really mince words on that. What seemed like a more positive experience was Man of Steel and Goyer was asked if he thought there was some unfinished there because we still haven’t gotten a direct sequel to the film with Henry Cavill in the lead. When asked if there was some more to tell in that regard, Goyer agreed that there was but he indicated he’s no longer involved in that world at the moment. He’s heard all the rumors but couldn’t offer up more than that. One thing he could touch on was Zack Snyder claiming that it wasn’t off the table to set Man of Steel in Christopher Nolan Dark Knight-verse. When asked if this was ever discussed, here is what he had to say:
“Not amongst us when I was doing Man of Steel, or among Nolan and myself. Chris always wanted to keep the Dark Knight films as a separate entity and [the studio] kept wanting, understandably, to pull him into a whole DC expanded universe. Chris obviously was a producer on Man of Steel, and it’s tempting to think they were linked, but they really weren’t. I mean, I’m sure one could retroactively do it.”
In another story related to Superman, Goyer was asked about Bridgerton breakout star Rege-Jean Page being up for the role of Superman’s grandfather in Goyer’s Krypton series, which ran for two seasons. It was reported that DC president Geoff Johns put a stop to the idea by saying Superman couldn’t have a black grandfather. Goyer comments on really wanting Jean Page for the role but he doesn’t exactly touch on the reason why it was passed on:
“All I will say on this is that I was the one who wanted to cast Page. I thought he was amazing. I thought his audition was amazing. I advocated very hard to cast him in that role. I thought he was a fantastic actor back then and he continues to be a fantastic actor. I wanted him to play Superman’s grandfather.”
One of Goyer’s biggest achievements is The Dark Knight Trilogy with the second film, The Dark Knight, widely considered one of the best comic book films of all time. Heath Ledger famously stole the show as Joker in the second installment, winning a posthumous Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor since he sadly passed away before the film’s release. Many believe that Ledger would’ve returned in some capacity as the character in The Dark Knight Rises if he hadn’t passed away and Goyer is asked what role he might’ve played if he was in the third film. He acknowledged that Christopher Nolan wasn’t one to discuss what might happen in the next film and really focused on the here and now but Goyer also assumes Joker would’ve made an appearance:
“Wow. Obviously, that would have completely changed the polarity of the third film. And it’s true we didn’t discuss the third film until two or three months after The Dark Knight had come out. Chris wasn’t interested [in discussing] what might happen in the next film. He always wanted to focus on the film in hand. He didn’t want to lay any groundwork for something that may or may not happen. But it’s a logical assumption that the Joker would have been released, and it’s certainly interesting to think of what would have happened if we had done that.”
Goyer is also asked an interesting question about what he would do if he were running DC and while he quickly says it’s something he would never do, he does offer up an insightful reason why Marvel has thrived in areas where DC has struggled:
“I think one of the issues is that Marvel’s had consistent leadership for the last 15 years or more, whereas DC hasn’t. There have been all of these changes in terms of who is running DC. That is fundamentally very hard. It’s hard to make any headway when leadership is changing. One of the other things that’s made Marvel incredibly successful is all of their adaptations are true to the source material. Ant-Man feels like Ant-Man. The Hulk feels like the Hulk. They don’t try to change things up. I would say, try to hew closer to what was the original intent. So, it’s having a consistent universe, having consistent leadership and staying true to the source material.”
David Goyer really does sound like an insightful guy and the full interview from “The Hollywood Reporter” is a pretty good read. He really is focused on the future with Foundation and Sandman, while upcoming lower-budget horror efforts like The Night House and Antlers also have him excited for what’s to come. Seems like he’s in a perfect place professionally and is happy with his current career trajectory.
What are your thoughts on some of David Goyer’s comments about past projects?