“Logan” Director James Mangold is a Perfect Fit to Helm “Swamp Thing” For DC Studios

Director James Mangold knows a thing or two about delivering deliciously hardcore superhero action. Mangold was the man who helmed what was once Hugh Jackman’s final turn as Wolverine in the excellent 2017 film Logan. You know, the one where Wolverine dies. Sure, Jackman’s Wolverine is coming back in Deadpool 3 (the film is set before the events in Logan, so it makes some sense!), but for many folks, it will be nearly impossible to top the adamantium-clawed sharpness of Logan, which gave us an ailing, failing, but still ferociously heroic superhero in his twilight. Mangold crafted a stripped-down, hardcore stunner that revealed a future world in which the surviving X-Men were scattered, and an ailing Wolverine was trying to stay alive long enough to drag an even sicker Professor X to a sailboat so they could both find safety at sea. This never happened, however, as Mangold took us through Wolverine’s thrilling, heartbreaking final days in a role he never wanted but was born to inhabit; the protector of a young mutant, Laura (Dafne Keen) very much like himself. (In fact, she was created from his DNA.)

Now, as Mangold revealed to the world yesterday, it looks as if he’s headed over to DC Studios to helm Swamp Thing, the final film in the first chapter of James Gunn and Peter Safran’s brand-new Unified DC Universe. Mangold teased the potential via Twitter on Tuesday night (the image was drawn by Swamp Thing co-creator Bernie Wrightson), and then Gunn retweeted it, which seems to indicate this deal is looking good:

Swamp Thing would tap into many of Mangold’s strengths that were evident in Logan; treating the superhero genre as something visceral, bloody, and with real stakes. Gunn and Safran have talked openly about how they want to see the DC Universe evolve going forward, with not just a unified, coherent single universe (The Batman Part II and other films and series not in the DC Universe will be tagged as “DC Elseworlds), but also to completed scripts done before any film goes into production. Story will be king in their new DC Universe. And that works great for Mangold, who is said to be a huge fan of the character, and who proved with the Logan script he co-wrote with Michael Green and Scott Frank that he believes in a superhero universe wedded to very human drama, beat by beat, act by act.

The character Swamp Thing was originally created by writer Len Wein and the aforementioned artist Wrightston, appearing in a 1971 stand-alone story “House of Secret No. 92.” His most iconic iteration was written by “Watchmen” creator Alan Moore and drawn by John Tolteben and Stephen R. Bissette. There was a film adaptation in 1982 from none other than Wes Craven, and a TV series that ran for a brief time on the DC Universe Platform, but in Mangold’s hands, and under Gunn and Safran’s plan, Swamp Thing would be the biggest, boldest adaptation yet.

At their big DC unveiling this past Tuesday, Gunn and Safran said the new film will investigate “the dark origins of Swamp Thing,” it will be a “horrific film,” but that the character will also be a big part of the DC Universe.

As for Mangold, while we wait to (hopefully) share the news he’s officially the Swamp Thing director, he already has a massively high-profile film coming out this May. Perhaps you’ve heard of it? It’s called Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, Harrison Ford’s last go-round as Indy, and the first film in the franchise not to be directed by Stephen Spielberg. The film is set to hit theaters on June 30.

For more on all things DC Studios, check out these stories:

James Gunn Reveals New DC Slate: New Batman, Superman, Supergirl Films, a Green Lantern Series & More

“The Batman Part II” is Part of Newly Branded DC Elseworlds Projects, Arrives in 2025

James Gunn Says “The Flash” is One Of The Best Superhero Movies He’s Ever Seen

Featured image: Director James Mangold and Hugh Jackman (Logan) on the set of LOGAN. Photo Credit: Ben Rothstein.


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