Faster than any other man alive…to a studio director’s chair.
Hold on to your seats, because the Flash movie is ramping up towards production with the new hiring of first time director Seth Grahame-Smith. Seems Warner Brothers wanted to make a splash with their new director after watching Marvel’s out of the box hires like James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy) and the Russo brothers (Captain America: Winter Soldier) storm on to great success with their first big budget superhero features. Of course, Gunn had a feature film under his belt already when he was hired, and the Russos were accomplished television directors.
Grahame-Smith, on the other hand, has almost no directing experience at all, having directed just two episodes of MTV’s The Hard Times of RJ Berger. That’s right, The Flash, which will probably have a budget in excess of $150 million, is going to be run by a first time feature director who built his profile by authoring the bestselling hits Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. At the very least we know that he has experience writing for fun, off the wall characters, so Barry Allen’s voice should be well intact.
But let’s take a look at some other writers who made the big jump to the director’s chair and see how they did on the silver screen. Take, for example, Stephen King’s directorial debut Maximum Overdrive that told the story of vehicles everywhere coming to life with a bloodlust that could only be satiated by human flesh. With a total domestic gross of just under $7.5 million, Maximum Overdrive really never got into full gear.
Although King may have stumbled out of the gate, others, like Stephen Chbosky (who manned the indie darling The Perks of Being a Wallflower) rose to the occasion. For added bonus convergence points, Perks also featured attached Flash star Ezra Miller in a prominent role.
To make matters even more challenging to Grahame-Smith, both Chbosky and King were making movies based off of their own books.
So, will Grahame-Smith be able to manage the immense pressures of a massive studio production? Or will come to be a cautionary tale for big budget studios looking to make the front page with a shocking hire? I guess we’ll find out in 2018.