One of the many projects put in development for Warner Bros.' DC Films was a solo Deathstroke movie with Joe Manganiello reprising his role and with The Raid writer/director Gareth Evans attached to the film. The project was announced in the trades in 2017 and.....quietly went away. Though the star insisted it was still in the works as of 2018, nothing ever came of the movie and DC's strategy has seemingly shifted into other areas. Evans has previously spoken about ideas for the movie, but in a new interview has offered details about the visual style of the film and conversations he had with Manganiello.
“I was actually quite enthused and excited about [Deathstroke] back in the day, when it was first pitched to me. I met with them, and talked to them about it, and was certainly attached to it at a certain point,” Evans revealed to Yahoo Movies UK .“I've spoken to Joe Manganiello, who was attached to star as Deathstroke. I spoke to him a while back, and we both lamented the fact that it didn't happen.”
Evans elaborated on the style he had considered from the film which would have utilized his trademark martial arts seen in The Raid movies with a bit of a comic book flavor to them. The writer/director also said it would have been "really visceral and really fun."
“We had ideas of the kind of style that we would have gone for with that, which would have married some of the more grounded style that I have, but then because of the world of it, it would allow me to be a bit more flamboyant and a bit more stylised. We could have taken it in some really interesting areas...We had some pretty bold ideas there that could have been really visceral and really fun."
The director revealed that his plan would have been to make a movie that was 100 minutes or less and not a regular two-hour plus superhero movie. Evans says the film would have taken a "Shakespearean" turn on Deathstroke's origins and exploring how he lost his eye and became the mercenary we know.
"I wanted to tell something that would be a lean story, that would be kind of an origin of that character. Back then, I was massively influenced by the noir films coming out of South Korea, so that was my pitch. I was like, these films are amazing: the texture, and the tones of colours, the grit and the aggression of them is super interesting to use to tell Deathstroke's story.”
Evans himself said he wasn't even sure why the film never happened, but that communication about the project simply ceased one day. The director went on to say that it's possible it could still happen one day, but it's unclear if the director will still be interested if that phone call comes.
Disclosure: ComicBook is owned by CBS Interactive, a division of ViacomCBS.