Sometimes bigger isn’t always better. Don’t tell DC and Marvel that though as they increasingly try to shove more superheroes into their movies in an attempt to wow audiences. While it is certainly fun to see a host of your favourite superheroes fight on-screen together for a common cause, often the real meat of a story or character is lost in the approach.
We toyed with it but one of the things I’ve been very conscious of is that I think one of the reasons a lot of different movies are in the comic book arena these days, is they keep operating from the “more is more” philosophy. If we made a movie last time about four superheroes, this time it’s gonna be seven, next time it’s gonna be twelve. And there’s a kind of arms race in visual effects and cast and I don’t think it necessarily yields more. Do you the math If you have a 120 minutes and you have seven actors with principal roles, then they’re each getting six minutes to themselves, or to their storylines. If you make a movie about two or three characters, the movie is really owned by these characters and you get to go deep with them. That was our goal.
One of my biggest concerns with films like the upcoming Avengers: Infinity war is that there is just simply not going to be enough time to serve individual superheroes justice and it could lead to a film that leaves cinemagoers more underwhelmed with its characters than awed by their abilities. In fact, over the past few years, some of the best superhero films have actually been the ones which didn’t feature too many leading characters (Doctor Strange and Deadpool for instance.)
There is a place for ensembles though, which Avengers proved is a formula that can work. Studios need to just be wary of over-doing it and find what the sweet-spot might be in terms of how many characters you can throw at these films before they become overwhelming.
Having a focused story telling approach with Logan does make a lot of sense, as we get to explore the emotional turmoil that over a hundred years of life and war, along with fading powers can do to you. While there are some superheroes that we feel might not require a movie of their own, someone as layered as Wolverine definitely needed his own trilogy.