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Two-Episode Watchmen Series Set as a Prequel

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the reluctantly-optimistic dept.

Media 65

We were a bit disappointed when we heard the recent two-episode Watchmen series announcement since it was to be set as a brawler. However, it seems that these two games will be set as a prequel with the ability to play either Nite Owl or Rorschach in the days before superheroes were outlawed. "If you're wondering who could possibly replace the much-revered Alan Moore in the scripting department -- as the story is the linchpin upon which the whole Watchmen experience pivots -- comic fans will be glad to know that respected comic veteran Len Wein (co-creator of DC's Swamp Thing and Marvel's Wolverine characters) is on board to provide the dialogue, and original Watchmen illustrator Dave Gibbons is lending his insights as the game's adviser. Due out around the same time as the film's theatrical release, the game will be released in multiple parts designed to lead the player up to the graphic novel/film's events."

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Man... (3, Funny)

millia (35740) | more than 6 years ago | (#24321521)

I hope Alan Moore's been taking his blood pressure medication today.

Prequel. Good, bad, he's going to be grumpier than normal about things...

Re:Man... (5, Funny)

frankie (91710) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322323)

Aw, shucks. If only they had pushed the prequel even farther back in the storyline, to its ultimate pre-clusion: Watchmen Babies: V for Vacation! [google.com]

Re:Man... (1)

BadMrMojo (767184) | more than 6 years ago | (#24323179)

From what I remember, Alan Moore has expressed very little concern about what is done with his stories in other media. I don't have a link handy, but I recall an ancient interview with the AV Club over on The Onion in which he essentially said that what other people did with his stories really wasn't his concern and he had enough of his own work to keep him busy. He'd just let it go and take the paycheck.

You can call it selling out but it sounds like one of the more rational ways of handling it. How else are you going to stay sane during the dark days of 'LXG'?

(Disclaimer: His opinion may have changed over time. I think this may have been in response to the From Hell movie, which puts it back around 2001, and I haven't really been keeping up on such things.)

Re:Man... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24324087)

Did you really just quote the Onion as a legit news source? Am I the only one who may not believe that it's accurate?

Re:Man... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24325131)

Their "AV Club" (media news and maybe clubs also?) is an exception to their standard content.

Re:Man... (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324159)

You can call it selling out but it sounds like one of the more rational ways of handling it. How else are you going to stay sane during the dark days of 'LXG'?

Oh, I don't know... Maybe by not selling out? People can't just come along and do whatever they want with his work, they have to purchase the rights and such. He is either signing said rights away (and is thus to blame), or never truly held the rights to begin with due to some inane contract he signed with the original publishers (and is thus not necessarily to blame, unless for short sightedness).

-1 Incorrect (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24326755)

Moore is extremely outspoken against adaptations of his works. As DC comics owns the properties, he has no say over whether movie adaptations get made or not. All he can do is take his name off the project and refuse to accept payment, which instead goes to the artists. So, no, he doesn't collect a paycheck.

Re:Man... (1)

sesshomaru (173381) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324051)

On the other hand, Steve Ditko may be decidedly cheerful, "Make Mr. A into an insane hobo will you..."

Ok, that's some good news at least (3, Interesting)

Weaselmancer (533834) | more than 6 years ago | (#24321717)

when we heard the recent two-episode Watchmen series announcement

I was wondering how in the hell you'd do The Watchmen in a single 2.5 hour movie. It'd be worse than the Fantastic Four movies. Here's the heroes, here's the bad guy, here's 10 minutes of action, there's the door.

Anyone have a reference where it says The Watchmen will be two movies?

Re:Ok, that's some good news at least (1, Interesting)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 6 years ago | (#24321831)

Saw the preview before Dark Knight. It looks like is going to be beautiful. How faithful it will be is anyone's guess. Not sure how faithful it could be. IIRC, the comic was lots of talking and stuff about relationships. Ah well, i'll be there opening night.

Re:Ok, that's some good news at least (3, Informative)

sesshomaru (173381) | more than 6 years ago | (#24321839)

Hmm... yes, that's because they are doing The Black Freighter [comingsoon.net] and Under the Hood as a seperate DVD set to coincide with the movies release.

Re:Ok, that's some good news at least (2, Informative)

mad.frog (525085) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322071)

Hmm... yes, that's because they are doing The Black Freighter [comingsoon.net] and Under the Hood as a seperate DVD set to coincide with the movies release.

Shameless self-promotion: see my re-creation of the Tales Of The Black Freighter story here:

http://boredomfestival.wordpress.com/2007/12/11/tales-of-the-black-freighter/ [wordpress.com]

Re:Ok, that's some good news at least (1)

sesshomaru (173381) | more than 6 years ago | (#24323937)

Hmm.. that reminds me of why I'm not so upset about this Watchmen movie. It's being treated by people as if their Koran is being made into a (possibly) bad movie...

.

Well, my Koran was old E. C. Comics... such as Tales from the Crypt which Black Freighter is loosely based on (both the art and the story could have appeared in an old Vault of Horror with no changes). So... my favorite comics were already horribly desecrated, and yet the sun still comes up each day. C'est la vie...

In fact, I've always seen Watchmen as an obituary for the comics industry... this black, funereal thing morning an artform's lost potential, so I'm interested to see how or if this is translated to the screen. I think that's why they included Marooned in the book, as a history lesson.

Re:Ok, that's some good news at least (2, Informative)

LMacG (118321) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322317)

Although TFS is poorly written (hello, I must be new here), the "two-episode Watchmen series" mentioned would be the subsequently discussed games, not the movie, of which there will be just one. Not counting the Black Freighter stuff, noted elsewhere.

My only worry at this point is that they've spent so much time and money recreating the look that they will have forgotten the story.

Re:Ok, that's some good news at least (1)

jmoriarty (179788) | more than 6 years ago | (#24330347)

I was wondering how in the hell you'd do The Watchmen in a single 2.5 hour movie.

I was wondering the same thing. I took a quick pass at how Snyder could squeeze 12 issues into two hours [writingiscake.com] , and it just doesn't make sense even with the Black Freighter removed.

I wish they had done this as an HBO mini series or something, but alas. The trailer looked pretty, so we'll just have to keep our fingers crossed.

It's funny... (2, Interesting)

sesshomaru (173381) | more than 6 years ago | (#24321771)

A while ago I bought the one only other Watchmen things (other than the comic) with Alan Moore's imprimature on it, the Watchmen Sourcebook [watchmencomicmovie.com] . This was part of a selection of products for Mayfair's DC heroes game.

.

Too bad nobody thought to use these for a PC game... a Watchmen American style RPG could be fun....

Re:It's funny... (2, Funny)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322821)

Too bad nobody thought to use these for a PC game... a Watchmen American style RPG could be fun....

How about a Watchmen JRPG?
"DAMNIT, ADRIAN, YOU CAN'T CATCH BULLETS FIRED BY DRAGONS FROM ORBIT."

Re:It's funny... (1)

sesshomaru (173381) | more than 6 years ago | (#24323493)

JRPG Watchmen? Doctor Manhattan: Why do people rebuild things they know are going to be destroyed? Why do people cling to life when they know they can't live forever? Think how meaningless each of your lives is! Life.. Dreams... Hope... Where'd they come from? ...And where are they headed? These things... I am going to to destroy!

Re:It's funny... (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324263)

Needs more ellipses.

Re:It's funny... (1)

sp332 (781207) | more than 6 years ago | (#24326073)

...Here...you...go...!

Re:It's funny... (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324187)

JRPGs aren't really RPGs, they're slightly interactive cinematics.

Re:It's funny... (1)

LearningHard (612455) | more than 6 years ago | (#24335935)

Mayfair's DC Heroes, I remember that one. God that was an awesome pen and paper rpg. Did heroes right.

Chewing The Cud (2, Insightful)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 6 years ago | (#24321833)

Why is it that the entertainment industry must chew the cud of its past successes over and over. Why is it seen as acceptable, and even desirable, that a work be "brought to the big screen". Frankly it's obscene.

Watchmen was a great comic. A fantastic graphic novel. No one "Should make a movie of this". Or a game. Or a TV show. Great works do not need to be paraded before the masses in order to be vindicated in some ridiculous fashion. Fans do a disservice to their favorite work by suggesting this.

Famous works that go to Hollywood are essentially just like the actors that go there. A minute few make it big, regardless of talent. Most end up washed out with their dreams; waiting tables, mailing second rate scripts or working in the adult industry. Is that what you want to happen to Watchmen? I don't.

Watchmen will not work on the big screen. They will defile it. Expect the Happy-Meal version, with Dr. Manhattan in a leotard throughout, A cigar-less Comedian, and a kung-fu fighting Rorschach who find happiness in the end. Silhouette will make an appearance, and you know in exactly what context. Ozymandias will probably die a brutal death after his plot is foiled at 6 seconds to midnight. It will be a gruesome spectacle, like watching a car hit a truck in slow motion. Why would anyone want this?

The answer is.... (1, Insightful)

brunes69 (86786) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322091)

... no one cares about anything you just said because we all know you and everyone else will go see the movie regardless of how bad it is or is not, and they will all make a tankerload of money from it.

Re:The answer is.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24327955)

A. Fucking. Men.

(Incidentally, the quote above is public domain licensed! Anonymous karma whoring FTW!)

Re:Chewing The Cud (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24322113)

Have you even _seen_ the trailer? The scenes in there are panel-for-shot recreations of the comic.

http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/article/watchmen_trailer_to_comic_comparison

Re:Chewing The Cud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24322119)

To be fair, in the trailer you can see Dr. Manhattan naked in the scene where he first appears in blue form at the lab. It's just not 100% noticable because of the blue glow around his junk, but if you look closely you'll see it.

Re:Chewing The Cud (4, Insightful)

millia (35740) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322167)

Watchmen was a great comic. A fantastic graphic novel. No one "Should make a movie of this". Or a game. Or a TV show. Great works do not need to be paraded before the masses in order to be vindicated in some ridiculous fashion. Fans do a disservice to their favorite work by suggesting this.

There's a difference between exploitation and exploration. I saw a wonderful adaptation of Salman Rushdie's 'Haroun and the Sea of Stories' as a play, and it went places that even the (wonderful) original didn't. Every medium has compromises, and as long as the work is adapted well, it can be rewarding.

Well, by the way, does not include standard Hollywood tricks. Orson Scott Card's ruminations on the subject of why you change and when come to mind.

Watchmen will not work on the big screen. They will defile it. Expect the Happy-Meal version, with Dr. Manhattan in a leotard throughout, A cigar-less Comedian, and a kung-fu fighting Rorschach who find happiness in the end. Silhouette will make an appearance, and you know in exactly what context. Ozymandias will probably die a brutal death after his plot is foiled at 6 seconds to midnight. It will be a gruesome spectacle, like watching a car hit a truck in slow motion. Why would anyone want this?

Possibly. However, Manhattan is already showing up nude in the trailer and the Comedian has his cigar- I'm guessing you haven't seen the trailer, because those are poor examples. Or have read the recent articles, where they state explicitly that it still ends with the villain accomplishing his nefarious goal, in spite of studio pressure.

Alas, that goal might not be the squid, so I'm holding judgment on the subject.

I get your point, I really do. I've seen too many bad adaptations, too. But there can be good adaptations, and the odds look decent for this.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324963)

it still ends with the villain accomplishing his nefarious goal, in spite of studio pressure.

Awesome! Hopefully the ambiguity about whether or not he's a villain is still present. It would be pretty cool to have real Americans actually talk about moral relativism in response to a flashy movie. Batman may have just prompted some of that, but it's the kids' version compared to the Watchmen comic.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Tragedy4u (690579) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324967)

Dr Manhattan isn't quite nude in the trailer, he has no genitalia. Either they've blocked out his manly bits for the advert or they intentionally made him a genderless eunich. Either way he's just not Dr Manhattan without his dork hanging out in every scene.

Re:Chewing The Cud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24322177)

Did you not see the trailer? We already got a climpse of Manhattan penis and Comedian has a cigar. You are way to pessimistic. I'm not saying that I think the movies is going to be a fantastic, perfect version of the comic, but I doubt it's going to be as horrible as you seem to think it will. Watch the trailer and couple of your crazy fears should be soothed.

I did hear somewhere that they had changed the Ozy creature end to something else blowing up NY. Of course I also heard the tossed the changed-ending script to go with one closer to the comic. So, i'm cautiously optimistic, with a hefty side of skepticism.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322243)

You might not want to RTFA. This article is not about the movie. Movies based on comic books have been getting better since the 1990's -- nigh presentable.

TFA is about the same-day-released videogame based on the movie based on the comic book. Hope you have some medication handy.

Re:Chewing The Cud (2, Insightful)

ZombieRoboNinja (905329) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322275)

First off, at least two of the things you mention are specifically disproven in the trailer.

But yeah, screw this adaptation to new media crap! What the hell was James Joyce thinking? Clearly the only way to do justice to a good piece of art is to shrink-wrap it in its original context so that only a privileged few are able to bask in its full glory.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

alan_dershowitz (586542) | more than 6 years ago | (#24323455)

No one could ever possibly be concerned that a movie adaptation might emasculate a story for commercial viability, because that's never happened, especially not to an Alan Moore book.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

jvkjvk (102057) | more than 6 years ago | (#24328137)

You cannot emasculate the story. You can only emasculate the adaptation.

Re:Chewing The Cud (4, Informative)

tedivm (942879) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322293)

The trailer already has Dr. Manhattan pretty close to nude (which seems to be a big deal for you) and the Comedian smoking a cigar (in Vietnam no less).

Zack Snyder (director of 300) used the comic as his storyboard and even brought Dave Gibbons in to assist with artwork. While we all know there isn't a chance in hell of this happening, Mr. Snyder has said that his ultimate goal is to make a film that Alan Moore will watch and thing represents the comic.

Is there a chance this movie will fail, and horribly so? Of course. I'm not going to be that jackass who doesn't give it a chance though. Watchmen is one of my all time favorite works of fiction (not just comic), and I will be very disappointed if it sucks, but if it doesn't then it will introduce that many more people to the ideas and world of Watchmen, something which I think is a good thing.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324231)

Zack Snyder (director of 300)

Uh-oh! Interest... waning...

Re:Chewing The Cud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24322781)

Read the interview with Snyder on EW.com. He gets the comic book. He explains that a movie wouldn't have worked before because the book was a deconstruction of comic books, and a movie would have to be the same. With the glut of super hero movies over the past five years, mainstream culture is so steeped in the genre now, that the movie finally makes sense to do. I read a review of "The Love Guru" that says Mike Myers parodies things that no one knows about -- this seems to me to be what Snyder is getting at, and that understanding of the subject is just part of what has made me very hopeful about this movie.

Also, as others have said, the trailer alone dispels most of what you're worried about. I suppose you'll whine that Ozymandias' suit isn't purple enough or something, but some people just enjoy hating.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Zantac69 (1331461) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322829)

I think its pretty elitist to say it "wont work" because it wont be as good as the graphic novel. Show me a movie adaptation of any publication that is better than the original? Its all down to opinions...and what people like. Is this movie really being marketed to fans of the graphic novel? *shrug* Sure it is...a little...but the base they are going for is the people that have not read the novel and will say "Hey...this looks neat - superheros that I have never heard of..." In the end, it will likely be a watered down version of the graphic novel...that will hopefully appeal to a wider audience. It may inspire some to read the novel and see the true image...and it will certainly turn off some die-hard fans because "thats not like it was in the book..." *shrug* Thats what movie making is all about...

Re:Chewing The Cud (4, Informative)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 6 years ago | (#24323683)

The movie of Fight Club was arguably better than the novel, and even the author agrees.

Re:Chewing The Cud (3, Funny)

Tragedy4u (690579) | more than 6 years ago | (#24325193)

I disagree, the book was better...lets fight!

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

EdgeyEdgey (1172665) | more than 6 years ago | (#24326403)

Shhh..
Remember the 1st rule of book club!

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 6 years ago | (#24328153)

The movie of Fight Club was arguably better than the novel, and even the author agrees.

...and there's talk of a musical, with Trent Reznor... no joke.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Snufu (1049644) | more than 6 years ago | (#24331389)

Whew! I know what novel I won't be reading anytime soon.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

cptnapalm (120276) | more than 6 years ago | (#24326271)

"Show me a movie adaptation of any publication that is better than the original?"

Godfather.

"it will likely be a watered down version of the graphic novel"

Not sure they could do anything other than water it down; it would take 12 hours to put everything in it an would cost a billion dollars.

From everything I've read and seen, the movie people are trying to do a faithful adaptation, though I have reservations about some of the stylistic choices.

If it seems good, I'll go see it.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Z34107 (925136) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322999)

Watchmen was a great comic. A fantastic graphic novel. No one "Should make a movie of this". Or a game. Or a TV show.

Why not? It's how Japan does it. An author writes a paperback ("raito noberu"), and if it's successful, maybe he'll pursue a manga adaptation. Or get a studio for an anime production.

Granted, it's a somewhat different situation, and I will never be able to "appreciate" the originals until I learn Japanese. But, as many ways as there are to ruin a series (horrible dubbing of an anime, or almost anything Hollywood does over here) there are still more to do a good job.

Now, if they do a good job, you're going to have to go watch it. And then you'll feel silly for all the terrible things you said about the movie now ^.^

Re:Chewing The Cud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24328921)

You know, some Japanese light novels are getting translated into English and published in the US. Granted, it's not the true original if it's not in Japanese, but close enough for most practical purposes.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Z34107 (925136) | more than 6 years ago | (#24329575)

That's what I meant - I'm looking forward to Haruhi in October! But, in the context of the parent I was replying to, that translation couldn't be anything but a travesty to the original, no?

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

bob.appleyard (1030756) | more than 6 years ago | (#24335285)

And that's why I only ever read the King James Bible. Any translations from the original are an affront to Jesus.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

zullnero (833754) | more than 6 years ago | (#24323973)

Because it's either this, or more unimaginative drivel during a time when getting people to spend money on movies is much harder than usual. They're basically pulling all the wild cards out of their pockets they can find and throwing them all down on the table this year. This is a blatant attempt at trying to get a particular demographic that makes the most disposable income on the average to come out to the movies.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

myth_of_sisyphus (818378) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324867)

I just saw the trailer (watched it many times) and it looks incredible.

The Comedian has a cigar...and a slight grin as he burns a VC to the ground. (Viet Cong not Venture Capital).

One point however, the assailant of Ozymandias had his gun changed to a walkie-talkie in homage to Spielberg on the trailer.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Rokas (1254280) | more than 6 years ago | (#24326175)

What people like me are scared of is that movies become the one and only medium. For quite a lot of people if it's not on the big screen it doesn't exist. I mean look at this discussion. I have never seen a musical or a play, even if it were based on something I like. But I bet I will never be called elitist if I refused to go to "watchmen on ice".

Also I never met anyone who never saw a film in the same way I never saw a stage musical. Yet there are loads of people who never read a comic book. Film adaptation of a comic book is no different than a novelization of a film. It's just that all the hype that builds up about them that's annoying.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

Om (5281) | more than 6 years ago | (#24326637)

If I had mod points you would get every single one of them, my friend.

Re:Chewing The Cud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24328581)

Probably good that I never read it then. I can enjoy the work that is on the screen instead of hand wringing and moaning about the horrible Hollywood producers raping my golden calf.

Get over it, it's the mighty buck that drives the
entertainment industry. I know, I work there, I'm a distributor.

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

fmstasi (659633) | more than 6 years ago | (#24331717)

Well, the "entertainment industry", of course, does it for the money. But the director does it as a challenge. I, as a fan, see it as a chance to have a few millions more read the comic book, after or before the movie. I know the movie will *never* be as good as the book, by far; but if you avoid reading the book in the three months before seeing the movie, you may be not too disappointed (it surely worked for me with "V for Vendetta").

*** SPOILER *** (weeell, you never know who reads a thread...)








As many suspected, you *surely* didn't see the trailer: there is a scene with Ozymandias "alien creature" in New York, and I think I had a glimpse of Rorschach's death (BTW, I am not sure he died, but this is a separate trhead...)

Re:Chewing The Cud (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#24337469)

Things don't magically appear on 'the big screen' they have to be conceived and recorded first. Would you demand that a work must remain in its original format from the moment it was written until the sun runs out of hydrogen?

Sometimes there were stories that didn't originate as screenplays. Simply because they weren't originally intended for screenplays doesn't mean that it is somehow wrong to try and adapt the story.

Watchmen Motion Comics on iTunes (2, Informative)

_|()|\| (159991) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322195)

Warner Bros. is also releasing an animated version of the actual comics on iTunes. The first chapter is available for free (for a limited time, I think). Alan Moore's name is absent from the credits of this one too.

Re:Watchmen Motion Comics on iTunes (0, Troll)

CestusGW (814880) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322407)

That horrifies me. The point of the graphic novel was that you could take your time, and absorb every little nuance - graffiti of lovers burned into a wall, the headlines on the newspapers, the reflections in windows. And then you animate that? Everything that made the comic great will wash past in low-detail animation, moving too quickly to allow even the faintest bit of appreciation.

Superman to Brainiac, re: Kandor: Let my people... (2, Interesting)

JoshDM (741866) | more than 6 years ago | (#24322437)

... grow - Len Wein.

Wish they'd do The Watchmen TV series (5, Funny)

aapold (753705) | more than 6 years ago | (#24323131)

Then the nielsen ratings could tell us who watches The Watchmen.

I dare ya (1)

Kenrod (188428) | more than 6 years ago | (#24324403)

We were a bit disappointed when we heard the recent two-episode Watchmen series announcement since it was to be set as a brawler.

I dare you to make less sense.

Re:I dare ya (1)

vegiVamp (518171) | more than 6 years ago | (#24331443)

Pony pancakes ?

This FP for GNAA. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24325589)

Gawker At most ANYONE THAT THINKS prima 3onnas, and bought the farm...
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