Having penned a number of seminal Batman tales including The Dark Knight Returns and Year One, influential comic book creator Frank Miller almost got to make his mark on the Batman movie franchise back in the early 2000s, teaming up with Darren Aronfosky to write a version of Year One, although it was ultimately scrapped in favour of Christoper Nolan’s Batman Begins.
Speaking to Variety, Miller has briefly spoken about the aborted Year One project, as well as revealing where he’d take the movie franchise if he had his own way:
“That screenplay was based on my book Batman: Year One, and yeah it was much more down to earth,” said Miller. “In it a fair amount of time is spent before he became Batman, and when he went out and fought crime he really screwed it up a bunch of times before he got it right. So it was 90-minute origins story.”
“My dream would be to make it much smaller,” he continued. “To lose the toys and to focus more on the mission, and to use the city a great deal more. Because he’s got a loving relationship with the city he’s protecting. And unlike Superman his connection to crime is intimate; it has been ever since his parents were murdered. And he defeats criminals with his hands. So it would be a different take. But it will never be in my hands, because it would not be a good place to make toys from. There wouldn’t be a line of toys.”
Asked for his opinion on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which drew heavily on The Dark Knight Returns with regards to the depiction of Batman, Miller responded: “I’ll just say: ‘Thanks.’ What can I say? — he laughs — no, actually I’ll withdraw that; I’ll say: ‘You’re welcome!’”