Chris McKay recently talked with Collider, at the press day for The LEGO Ninjago Movie (a film he worked as producer upon after previously directing The LEGO Batman Movie) about his new project with Warner Bros. and DC – the highly anticipated big screen outing for Nightwing, defender of Blüdhaven and Batman’s right hand man.
Whilst many fans are very enthusiastic for the Boy Wonder to hit the big screen under his Nightwing persona, no one seems more thrilled about the prospect than the director himself, with McKay stating that: “I’m a big comic book fan, and being able to do the story of Nightwing, to do a Dick Grayson story, which is a character that every single person in the world knows, but has never really had a lot of screentime…I’m a big fan of underdog stories, and he is one of the biggest underdog stories in comics. And he’s a character that I grew up with. I like the arc.”
Enthusiasm aside for the character himself, it appears that McKay has a very tight idea of how he wants to adapt this vigilante to the screen, and to make him feel a lot more real and grounded: “It’s gonna be a badass action movie with a lot of heart and emotion. It’s gonna be a crazy, fun ride. It’s gonna be real stuntwork, and they’re gonna need to do all of the stuff on camera and do it credibly. For the cast and the crew, it’s gonna be a visceral experience, and for the audience. It’s not gonna be like a lot of these movies where there’s a lot of CG and flying, and things like that. Everything he does is gonna have to be real.”
UPDATE: McKay has also spoken to Metro about DC’s filmmaker-led approach, stating that: “These movies are not trying to follow the Marvel model, they’re trying to do their own thing with filmmakers that they like, and produce things that are wholly original and wholly unique. They still want to build a universe, and that’s why it takes a lot of time and a lot of people banging their heads together trying to figure out what to do. Because it’s hard. It’s hard to get all these people, and all these egos, and all this stuff in one place and get it all to work out. But they are committed to that, and that’s what’s amazing about working with Jon Berg and Geoff Johns. They’re real partners, and so is everyone at the Warner Bros. family.”
McKay may be referring too the action sequences currently associated with the DCEU so far, many of which culminate in a large battle with a CG villain. His take on Nightwing would fit the character much better, and keep in tone with the tone of the comic books. This could well be a very positive step forward for the studio with a more practical, stunt-based action film.