Daredevil Showrunner: "It's Like Batman Without The Money"


Today, was a pretty exciting day if you're a fan of Marvel Comics' blind superhero, Daredevil. Marvel officially released the full trailer for the Netflix 13-episode series.

With that out of the way, Marvel’s Daredevil executive producer/showrunner Steven S. DeKnight ("Spartacus") has opened up about what fans can expect from the series. First off, DeKnight revealed in a new interview that Charlie Cox, who play Matt Murdock/Daredevil, had an interesting audition that was quite what they wanted, but when they made some adjustments they were thrilled. "It wasn’t quite the direction we were going in but it was so nuanced and well thought out that we called him back in and we talked to him and made some adjustments and he made fantastic adjustments and he had such a depth of character that we really responded to," Deknight told IGN. "He can exude such inner turmoil and pain that is really vital to Matt Murdock."

DeKnight was largely influenced by Frank Miller's run. He especially liked showing Daredevil "pushing himself to the limit who can get hurt and can get killed." Yes, Daredevil has his heightened senses, but at the end of the day he is a superhero with no real superpowers. "Really, it’s like Batman without the money," DeKnight stated. "He is just determined. It’s sheer force of will that keeps him going when a normal man would fall over and a lot of that I think, also in the Matt Murdock mythos, comes from his father and being a boxer and that kind of thing, where you just don’t quit."

Daredevil is one of the few mainstream superheroes that relies on the character's religion. We saw in the trailer that Murdock was confessing to future sins, but will that be a big aspect in the show? "I think it’s vital to the character. Matt Murdock is, I think, one of the most, if not the most, religious characters in the Marvel Universe, with the heroes," DeKnight explained. "His Catholicism is so much part of his being and part of his conflict, I think it would be incredibly disingenuous to attempt to do the show where that’s not a big part of it."

From the official stills and the trailer we've only seen Daredevil wearing an all-black costume. This is a costume that Daredevil wore in the comics when he was first starting out and DeKnight wanted to stick to that instead of jumping right to the red suit most fans are familiar with. "His suit, which we call his vigilante outfit, in the beginning - we tried practically everything, design-wise," DeKnight said. "We experimented with a lot of different head pieces. One version was a ski mask with the eyes sewn shut. We tried everything until we found something that just felt right. And also, really going back to that Man Without Fear, I can’t say where his costume ends up, where it goes, but there is definitely an evolution."

DeKnight was quick to praise Vincent D’Onofrio (Full Metal Jacket), believing he is one of the few actors that "embodies Wilson Fisk," aka Kingpin. What can we expect from Daredevil arch-nemesis this season? "Fisk plays a crucial role in Season 1, as the adversary of Matt Murdock," he replied. "Also, on the flip side, Matt Murdock is the fly in Fisk’s ointment. What I love about this show is we’re able to explore some gray areas of who is really good, who is really bad, and which person is really better for the city in the long run. It's a question we really examine."


Finding the right actor to play Matt Murdock's blind martial arts instructor Stick, was a bit of challenge. DeKnight had originally wanted Sonny Chiba, but that didn't work out. He found his Stick when he noticed how fantastic Scott Glenn was in HBO's The Leftovers. "I saw him and I believe he is in his earlier 70’s and in better shape than me or anybody I know," he said. "So I suggested everybody take a look at The Leftovers and his performance and everybody was on board. We reached out to his people and were delighted."

Daredevil debuts on Netflix, April 10th.