9 Ways Warner Bros. Can Make an 'Edgier' Green Lantern Sequel
Studio boss Jeff Robinov confirmed this week that Warner Bros. and DC Comics have every intention of exploring a sequel to Green Lantern, this despite a meager $53 million opening, a disappointing global gross around $160 million, a budget rumored to be well north of $200 million (plus $100 million in marketing) and -- insult, meet injury -- a fusillade of scathing reviews. "We had a decent opening so we learned there is an audience," Robinov told the Los Angeles TImes. "To go forward we need to make it a little edgier and darker with more emphasis on action.... And we have to find a way to balance the time the movie spends in space versus on Earth." Huh. "Edgier"? "Darker"? But how? Time to put on our Green Lantern 2 development thinking caps!
1. Hire a new, younger, hungrier director
Legendary and Warners did it before with Christopher Nolan. Sony hopes they did it with Marc Webb. Fox thought it did it with Matthew Vaughn. Sources (and common sense) have all but confirmed that Martin Campbell -- a bloat hog who made an exceptional hour of a James Bond film once -- is out. Who should take over? Two words: Rian Johnson. OK, two more: Duncan Jones.
2. Alternatively, hire Lars von Trier
I mean, obviously.
3. Deploy one of those "edgy" semi-numerical titles
To paraphrase Sean Parker's sage counsel to Mark Zuckerberg: "Green Lantern 2 isn't cool. Green Lan2ern is cool." Or... something.
4. Jam Ryan Reynolds in a box by himself for 90 minutes
It worked in Buried!
5. Avoid a hideously disfigured villain
I'm sure Warners et. al thought they were going edgy and dark with Hector Hammond's lumpy, oblong visage. But from the first time anyone laid eyes on Peter Sarsgaard as the deformed mad scientist, it was clear that this was not going to be a character you wanted to spend any time with. I mean, the Joker was scarred. Red Skull had his face burned away. But they didn't give grown men nightmares.
6. Come up with a better pre-release scandal
I mean, Blake Lively is gorgeous and all, but reported nude-photo leaks are so... Miley. Everybody knows mysterious pregnancies and/or topless publicity stills are the way to go with comic-book heroines in 2011.
7. Add Smurfs
First of all, they're no more ridiculous than Sinestro. Second of all, you know what's the one phrase you haven't heard from anyone around Hollywood in the last four days? "Hoo boy, The Smurfs. What a disappointment." Third of all, Harrison Ford decapitated Papa Smurf not because he hates him, but rather because deep down the actor knows that only one of them remains relevant at the movies. Guess which.
8. Have Odd Future compose a soundtrack album
Let hip-hop's outrageous teen sideshow carry the day with critics and hipsters alike. You know you want it.
9. Release it in 2-D
A radical move? Sure. But sometimes looking good is worth the risk.