"You look at everything that worked and didn't work, on anything," the comic book writer and screenwriter told Collider at San Diego Comic-Con.
"Like revamping a character, reintroducing a character, I've done it a lot. The creative kind of viewpoint and way into the character and rebooting and changing it and reintroducing it, is informed by everything. It's informed by comics and both what works and what doesn't work. I don't wanna spoil any of the story there, but if people liked my run on Green Lantern, then hopefully they'll like what I'm doing."
Johns' focus is on penning a satisfactory script before Warner Bros. and DC Films president Walter Hamada move forward on the reboot — a means of avoiding the same pitfalls that troubled 2011's failed franchise launcher Green Lantern.
"And right now, look, I'm just writing a script, and hopefully this script gets into a place where Warner Bros., and DC, Walter and everybody — [once] they're really excited about it, when we get that right, then we'll move ahead on the project," Johns said. "But we gotta get it right."
In 2004, Johns penned a much-needed reboot for the Hal Jordan Green Lantern after the character — long an esteemed superhero of the DC Universe and a founding member of the Justice League — descended into villainy and madness.
Jordan's refresher came at a time when the character's reputation had sustained almost irreparable damage — a situation not too unlike Hal Jordan's jump to the big screen, where he was played by future Deadpool star Ryan Reynolds in the Martin Campbell-directed Green Lantern, a financial and critical failure.
Johns is "really taking everything into account, because that's what you do," he explained.
"You're not starting from ground zero and going, 'I'm going to tell a story about this.' It's connected to everything — animation and comics and zeitgeist and other movies — and there's a lot to kind of take in and then redirect. And I'm trying to do what I did on the comics in a way, is do a Rebirth."
The former President and CCO of DC Entertainment — Johns stepped away from his executive role in June, opting instead to take on a more creative role as writer/producer — Johns is content to resume his writing duties, earning a story credit on the upcoming James Wan-directed Aquaman and a screenplay credit on the now-shooting Wonder Woman 1984.
"As a writer — and that's what I really want to get back to, by the way — is being the writer. When I'm doing my comics, I feel like I have more control over the minutia, because the minutia, it does matter. All those little choices add up to something good or something that doesn't work," Johns said.
"And part of the reason I want to get back into the writing of it all is because I want to be able to form that minutia myself. It's kind of like if you said to somebody, 'Hey, let's try to figure out a way to write this comic.' It's gonna be a certain way unless you do it. It's a different way."
Johns writes and produces Green Lantern Corps through his newly-established Mad Ghost Productions. The film is expected to team Hal Jordan and other cosmic cops, namely fan-favorite John Stewart.
Warner Bros. previously claimed a July 24, 2020 release date.