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James Wan Turned Down 'The Flash' to Make 'Aquaman'

James Wan has now brought his vision of Aquaman to life in the upcoming solo film, but it turns out he turned down another Justice League hero to make it happen.

Wan recently revealed that he could've had his chance with the scarlet speedster Flash, one of several projects in development at Warner Bros. that haven't taken off as quickly as some might explain. As he explained in a new interview, the discussions really started after his work on The Conjuring.

Having made “The Conjuring,” I was part of the Warner Bros. family, and I knew they were doing their DC thing," Wan told the New York Times. "I spoke with Kevin Tsujihara [the Warner Bros. chairman and chief executive] at a premiere and I said, “I’m interested in the properties that you have at DC.” A few months later, I was in a general meeting with DC and they floated two properties that didn’t have filmmakers on board: the Flash and Aquaman."

The Flash would be a tempting deal for any filmmaker from a few perspectives. It has the potential to be a stunning film thanks to the many uses of the speed force, and The Flash is already one of DC's most popular characters, without the same hills to climb as someone like Aquaman. For Wan, though it came down to wanting to do something never done before.

"I felt the Flash had been done before," Wan said. "It had been on TV twice at that point. The one that had not been done was Aquaman. I realized, wow, his character resides in this crazy, big world, and I could do something very interesting with it. I look up to people like Spielberg, Cameron, Lucas, John Carpenter. I’m a fan of genre filmmaking, naturally. So I thought I could make “Aquaman” a genre film, meaning a horror monster movie. DC basically said, yes, you can make Aquaman versus sea monsters if that’s what you want."

Now Wan has put his stamp on the King of Atlantis, but creating this world wasn't easy.

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"There really aren’t a lot of visual cues from existing films to pull from," Wan said. "That was exciting for me, because I get to create a new world. In terms of the technicality of it: It was a pain. The actors would be suited up in their costumes, and placed inside these really awkward, uncomfortable rigs. Then visual effects would come in and add the flowing hair, the floating costumes and capes, and then paint in the entire world. A simple scene of two people talking underwater would just take days and days to shoot."

You can see Wan's Aquaman for yourself when the film hits theaters on December 21st.