'Annihilation' Director Says He Was Influenced By Alan Moore's Swamp Thing

Writer/director Alex Garland's Annihilation might not be the biggest sci-fi event of the year, yet those who have seen it have been captivated by its otherworldly horrors and existential themes. When attempting to identify some of his biggest inspirations for the film, Garland mentioned writer Alan Moore and pointed out a specific scene that was inspired by Moore and his Swamp Thing.

"Well a part, obviously, of thinking about Jeff [VanDerMeer's] book, which you'd have to say is the single biggest influence, the real influences, not the post-rationalized or even pre-rationalized influences, are sort of unknown to me, I think," Garland shared with SYFY WIRE of the film's influences. "If I was gonna hazard a guess, I'd probably say Alan Moore, the British comic book writer. I suspect there's some Alan Moore in there."

When pressed for more specific details, Garland confirmed, "Swamp Thing. This will make sense to people who are fans of comic books in the 1980s, which is a niche crowd, but to those people, Alan Moore's Swamp Thing appears about two-thirds of the way through the film in these sort of frozen statue figures, so there you go. There's one."

In the film, a group of scientists explores a bizarre environment in which the genetic makeup of humans, animals, and plant life all seem to be merging. The researchers aim to uncover the origins of the occurrence and how to prevent the spread of abnormalities.

Comic book artist Jock served as a concept artist on the film, who echoed Garland's sentiments about Moore.

"He's mentioned in the past how the Alan Moore comics were a big influence on him and Alan is a very intellectual writer in the same way that Alex is," the artist confirmed.

Fans of the DC Comics character who aren't satiated by the references to the creature are in luck, as a new Swamp Thing live-action series was recently announced with The Conjuring and Aquaman director James Wan serving as executive producer.

"Been developing this 'vegetarian hero' for awhile now :) With a great team. Happy to finally share. Expect — mood, mystery, gothic romance, and swamp monsters!" Wan shared on Twitter following the series' announcement.

The new Swamp Thing series is set to debut on the streaming platform DC Universe next year. Annihilation is on Blu-ray now.

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[H/T YouTube, SYFY WIRE]