Aquaman Director Calls The Film’s Conflict “Shakespearean”

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To say there’s a lot needlessly riding on Aquaman is an understatement. After the majority of films to populate the DC Extended Universe have been met with divisive reactions from critics and general moviegoers alike – or just plain didn’t meet financial expectations at the box office – there’s been a fair amount of pressure placed on the next hero to be granted a solo outing.

Fortunately, there’s been much positive buzz surrounding this bad boy in recent memory. Already, those who were fortunate enough to see some early footage at CinemaCon described what they saw as being “epic and fun,” in addition to lead actor Jason Momoa raising expectations by likening the picture to some of the biggest movie franchises in history, namely Star War, Indiana Jones and Lord of the Rings!

Now, we have director James Wan chiming in, commenting on the depth of the flick in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly. Here’s what he had to say:

“The main antagonist in this movie is Orm, played by Patrick Wilson, and Black Manta, played by Yahya [Abdul-Mateen], is caught up in that world with them as well. But the main drive really is, it’s almost a very classic Shakespearean story about brother from another world vs. brother from another world. And it really is a classic story of sibling rivalry.”

It pleases me to hear that the dynamic shared between Arthur and Orm will have complexity to it. Had you seen the animated film Justice League: Throne of Atlantis – or read the graphic novel of the same name – then you’re well aware of the potential to be tapped. Right now, I’m guessing all involved will do the material justice.

Aquaman Justice League

As the filmmaker continued, he touched on how Atlantis helps separate this offering from others in the genre:

“We’re used to superhero movies where the threat is from another dimension or aliens from another universe coming here and trying to destroy our Earth but we haven’t seen one where the main threat is from a massive, massive civilization that is right under our nose, in the ocean.… The idea that there could be a massive civilization living right underneath [us] that we don’t know about is kind of scary and exciting.”

Needless to say, all will be revealed when Aquaman opens in theaters on December 21st.

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