“DC doesn’t think Wonder Woman can carry her own movie, but Marvel is going to make a movie about a talking raccoon.”
I couldn’t help but laugh when my friend and fellow comic enthusiast Justen uttered this quip in a conversation a few weeks ago. While terribly funny, it is also a pretty accurate indictment on DC’s philosophy when it comes to making movies. Unless it’s about Superman or Batman, or the occasional graphic novel, DC doesn’t seem interested in making movies about their properties. Though I can’t completely blame them. They tried with a couple and both bombed horribly.
There in lies the difference. DC is gun shy about releasing movies about their lesser-known characters because a couple of them failed, while Marvel, despite a few bombs of their own, continues to pump out films about any property that someone is willing to write a script for. Outside of Green Lantern and Jonah Hex, no secondary DC characters have been given the opportunity to make an impact on the silver screen. On the flip side, Marvel created the most successful comic movie franchise of all-time (The Avengers) on the foundation of perceived “B-List” super heroes. On top of that, characters like Daredevil, Elektra, The Punisher, Ghost Rider, and soon to be The Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant-Man, have all had the chance to carry a movie.
Even the franchise that really started the comic boom in Hollywood, Blade, is based on a Marvel character that wouldn’t even qualify for the B-List. But Marvel had faith that their characters were marketable, and in turn knew how to market them. They were rewarded for their faith. It’s just a shame that DC doesn’t have the same faith in their characters or their abilities to market them.
With the announcement that the third installment in the Captain America franchise will be going head-to-head its opening weekend against the currently unnamed Superman/Batman team-up movie, it will be an interesting showdown between the biggest comic publishers in the world. Even more interesting is the fact that while DC is teaming up their favorite sons for their project, Marvel is content to march out The Star Spangled Avenger on his own.