Why Doug Liman Walked Away From Justice League Dark

Justice League Dark

The recently announced DC slate has something for everyone. Wonder Woman 2? Definitely. The Flash: Flashpoint? You bet. There's an avalanche of exciting DC projects on the horizon, but one of the most disappointing omissions from the current DC schedule is Justice League Dark -- which made headlines earlier this year when director Doug Liman stepped down from the project. I recently had the chance to ask Liman why he walked away from the ill-fated DC adventure while talking about the upcoming home release of The Wall, and he explained that the story simply never got to a place where he felt comfortable pursuing it:

You know, I develop more movies than I make. There's a weed-out process, and it's just that when you get to the comic book one, suddenly everybody hears about them. So, the script never got to a place that was special enough for me. Not for lack of trying.

If you keep up with comic book movies, then that sentiment should ring true to you. It sounds like Justice League Dark simply never got beyond the development stage, and Doug Liman eventually opted to move on to new projects instead of investing himself in a narrative that he wasn't entirely comfortable with. We have seen what happens when directors and studios allow half-cooked ideas to make it to the silver screen, so his decision to walk away from Justice League Dark seems to show a fair degree of restraint.

For newcomers to the greater DC mythos, Justice League Dark is just that -- a dark take on the traditional Justice League. With a roster filled out with supernatural heroes like Constantine, Deadman, and Anton Arcane (just to name a few) the team deals with magical, demonic threats that the standard Justice League wouldn't be able to handle. They've never appeared on the silver screen before, and it looks like we're going to have to keep waiting a little while longer.

That's not to say that the Justice League Dark team hasn't had a chance to stand out over the last year. In fact, DC Animation released a Justice League Dark animated film earlier this year, and it showed what Warner Bros. and DC are capable of if they combine the gothic team with far more mainstream DC characters like Batman.

Justice League Dark Animated movie

Now it just feels like a matter of getting the story right. After all, there's definitely an audience out there who wants to see a Justice League Dark movie. When we look at how popular characters like Swamp Thing, John Constantine, and Zatanna have become with mainstream DC fans in recent years, it doesn't seem entirely outlandish to assume that WB and DC will eventually go back down that road. Doug Liman walked away from the project because he couldn't get it right, but if he ever does, I think it's safe to say that fans will welcome him with open arms. These characters have been in the dark long enough; it's time for them to step into the light.

While there is no Justice League Dark movie on the way at the moment, we will make sure to keep you up to date on all of the latest and greatest DC news as it becomes available. Beyond that, make sure to catch the main Justice League team when they make their silver screen debut later this year on November 17. As for Doug Liman's latest work, The Wall is currently available on Digital HD, and the Blu-ray and DVD editions of the film will hit shelves on August 15.

Conner Schwerdtfeger

Originally from Connecticut, Conner grew up in San Diego and graduated from Chapman University in 2014. He now lives in Los Angeles working in and around the entertainment industry and can mostly be found binging horror movies and chugging coffee.