DC Films’ initial approach was to try and mimic the formula that worked so well for Marvel Studios when it came to building a shared superhero universe of their own, but things didn’t exactly go to plan. Ten movies were announced on the same day in October 2014, three of which have since been dropped entirely, while The Flash is finally set to start shooting at some stage this year.
The point was hammered home by the catastrophic failure of Joss Whedon’s Justice League that a change in approach was needed, and since then, Warner Bros.’ slate of comic book adaptations has evolved. Aquaman and Wonder Woman 1984 could barely be considered canon, Zack Snyder has admitted that his brand new cut of Justice League isn’t designed to set anything up for the future, and Walter Hamada confirmed that the plan is for the studio to move forward with developing two entirely different Batman franchises.
Then there’s Joker, the standalone smash hit that occupied its own corner of the mythology and went on to become the highest-grossing R-rated title in history. The success of Todd Phillips’ twisted thriller proved that there’s a market for DC movies that tell self-contained stories, and The Haunting of Bly Manor creator Mike Flanagan has now revealed that he’d love to bring Clayface to the big screen.
Well I've wanted to do a Superman movie since I was a kid, but I would also be really keen to do a standalone Clayface movie as a horror/thriller/tragedy. https://t.co/68nZFLOGLT
— Mike Flanagan (@flanaganfilm) January 8, 2021
There’ve been numerous iterations of the character over the years, and he’s generally regard as a foe of Batman, but Clayface has always tended to have a tragic backstory and elements of body horror that a talent like Flanagan could do something special with. As one of the horror genre’s premiere auteurs, the idea of the man behind Netflix’s The Haunting anthology, Doctor Sleep, Gerald’s Game and Ouija: Origin of Evil tackling a Clayface movie in the vein of Joker is something well worth looking into on WB’s part, and we can only hope that it’ll one day happen.