Speeding past several other candidates, Warner Bros is close to choosing Pride And Prejudice And Zombies and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter author Seth Grahame-Smith to write and direct its 2018 superhero film The Flash. We’ve confirmed the deal isn’t done but that talks are very close to completion.
Warner Bros’ reported previous choice to bring the Fastest Man Alive into movie theaters was The Lego Movie duo of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, now attached to direct the Han Solo stand-alone Star Wars film for Lucasfilm/Disney.
Planned as the sixth installment of the DC Extended Universe (WB’s answer to the Marvel Cinematic Universe), The Flash would be Grahame-Smith’s feature directorial debut, an interesting choice given the high stakes involved. Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice has a reported budget of $200 million, and while WB hasn’t disclosed the numbers for Suicide Squad, some estimates place that film’s budget just above the $100 million mark. If those films and their successors Wonder Woman and Justice League Part One are hits, The Flash is certainly getting a comparable budget. That’s a lot of trust to place in someone with just two screenplays — Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows adaptation, and the adaptation of his own book Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter — and a couple of episodes of his TV series The Hard Times Of RJ Berger under his belt.
The Flash is scheduled for release March 3, 2018, and Ezra Miller has already been cast as the Scarlet Speedster. Of course this isn’t the only incarnation of the Sultan of Speed. The CW’s version of The Flash, played by Grant Gustin, has been a hit for the network and is about to begin its second season. Interestingly, TV show executive producer Greg Berlanti was at one point a candidate to write the film version, though so far Warner Bros and DC have indicated there is no connection between the television DC universe, which also includes Arrow, the upcoming Legends Of Tomorrow and, tangentially, the now-cancelled NBC series Constantine.
The Flash comic series is, however, notable for delving deep into absolutely crazy territory, with time travel and alternate universes a mainstay of the series. In fact, The Flash is where DC introduced its concept of a multiverse back in 1961. As such, producers of the show have obliquely hinted at the possibility of connections between the TV series and the upcoming film, though naturally nothing has been announced.