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Topics - The Laughing Fish

Keaton did a short career retrospective on GQ's YouTube channel, and spoke about his experience and approach to playing the titular character. It's the time I've heard of Keaton mentioning Frank Miller's name as an influence on the film. I guess he must've skimmed through Dark Knight Returns as an idea of what the tone that Burton and co should be aiming for.
I know this is a long post, but I honestly don't care. It's good to look back and not forget what has happened.

Normally I don't use the term DCEU because I felt that the idea of a DC shared universe ceased to exist as soon as Josstice League came out, and everything else that came out since had tenuous continuity, at best. And I'm being generous by saying that. But I'll use the term for the sake of getting the message across.

It's amazing how badly managed the vast majority of DC films became over the years. Little did we know the studio meddling that happened during the Snyder and Ayer era was only the beginning.

The Snyder cut saga was the most infamous, but Suicide Squad 2016 was when all hell began to break loose. Initially, David Ayer denied that his film was reshot and the studio cut was exactly what he intended until he started giving hints that Geoff Johns was responsible for doing a lot of damage behind the scenes in 2019. When ZSJL was announced a year later, that's when he became very outspoken about his cut.

I want to make it clear by saying I don't blame Ayer for going along with the narrative back in 2016. His film was still financially successful despite the negative reviews, and if he had told the truth the studio would've done everything to damage his career permanently. I can sympathise why he went along with the narrative back then. But as time went by and WB continued to burn bridges with not only fans but with the talent they hired, his support for the studio and trying to take a diplomatic approach became rather obnoxious, even going so far liking tweets by trolls who attacked the Ayer cut fans. Whether he meant it or not, it's just a bad look, and sadly to say, I didn't have much sympathy when he realised at the beginning of this year that WBD have no intention of ever releasing his cut. If a harsh lesson is to be learned here, you can't be diplomatic with a rotten studio like Warners.

Justice League...need I say more? Anyone who still blames Zack Snyder for this ordeal is an idiot who suffers from Snyder Derangement Syndrome. Even if you couldn't stand Snyder's direction, I don't know how anyone couldn't have blamed the studio for this PR debacle. It got even worse when Joss Whedon was exposed for bullying behind the scenes, on top of sabotaging the original vision for a vastly inferior Avengers knockoff.

Five years later, Batgirl with Michael Keaton co-starring as Batman in a post-Flash timeline where he replaces Batfleck was produced, then shelved, because of the excuse that it would've damaged the DC brand. I know I was never at all enthusiastic about this film to begin with, but from an objective point of view, its cancellation remains a massive PR black eye for WBD. The fact that WBD didn't have the guts to notify the filmmakers and producers - these people had to find the news out for themselves - is unprofessional beyond belief. Sometimes I think Batgirl might've gained greater support online if it was set in the Burtonverse. But then again now that we know James Gunn hates Burton's Batman, any support for a Burtonverse Batgirl would've been just as futile.

Batgirl is the first out of three films that got shelved by WBD, following Scoob! Holiday Haunt and Coyote vs Acme. Although according to one of the screenwriters, the Looney Tunes movie still has a chance to come out. I doubt it because if the egotistical dickheads at Warners are taking the chance to say they regret releasing ZSJL, there's no way they want to hurt their egos even further by releasing ANOTHER film they tried to hide from the public. Anwyay, moving on...

Then there's The Flash. Initially, this was supposed to reboot the DC universe with Keaton replacing Affleck and Sasha Calle's Supergirl replacing Henry Cavill's Superman, hence Batgirl was originally made to follow the new timeline. When Batgirl was scrapped, reshoots were filmed to keep Keaton and Calle, but this time they'd be united with Cavill and Gal Gadot, and Batfleck had appeared in a post-credit scene, allegedly calling Barry out for help in a similar fashion when Flash called out to Bruce in BvS. As soon as Gunn took over as co-CEO of DC Studios, all of these reshot scenes were scrapped. After pulling the rug off of Cavill's announced return as Superman by announcing a reboot, Cavill - along with  Keaton, Calle, Affleck and Gadot - got kicked out of The Flash's ending, and reshoots for the third time had all of those people replaced by George Clooney's Bruce Wayne meeting Barry, for a cheap laugh. The reported Batfleck post-credit scene was scrapped in favour of Barry and a drunken Arthur Curry walking out of a bar, for another cheap laugh.

To be honest, judging from what I saw of The Flash, I don't think the second reshoot ending would've saved the film from getting bombed. The film itself had a lot against going for it, poor special effects, Ezra Miller's notoriety, negative fan reaction online ever since the plot was leaked, recreating the likeness of dead actors for cheap nostalgiabait. In a way, everybody else who was removed from the ending was spared from further embarrassment, and Gunn and Zaslav rightly had eggs on their face after calling the Flash "one of the best superhero films of all time".

Finally, there's Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. This was another film that was planned to follow the original post-Flash timeline, and Keaton would reprise his role in a cameo. When Batgirl got scrapped, his cameo in Aquaman 2 got scrapped, and was replaced by Affleck. Momoa excitedly posted on social media celebrating Affleck's return...only for Affleck's appearance was confirmed to have been scrapped a few months later once Gunn stupidly announced his own DCU soft-reboot agenda. Ultimately, Affleck AND Keaton got screwed over by the studio.

There is a good argument that BvS was the first DCEU film that got screwed up when they chopped half an hour of the film in theaters, but at least the Ultimate Edition came out months later. There was even a rumour that Affleck recorded a voice cameo for Blue Beetle before Gunn took over, which Gunn denies. Again, with his track record of lying, who knows?

It's easy to say the DCEU, or whatever the hell one prefers to call it, is a missed opportunity. But I don't see DC on film getting any better in  the future. 2023 was a disastrous year for the brand cinematically, but they're still wasting more money to produce even more crap. If they want to lose more money and allow Gunn to have his ego trip to hijack the brand, so be it. We'll see how much of this announced DCU stuff actually gets released. Whatever happens, I'm having no part in their nonsense. I'm only thankful that ZSJL got released, because it would've been impossible if we were still waiting for it right now.
Movies / WBD wants to shelve Coyote vs Acme
Sun, 18 Feb 2024, 01:34
The news came out a week ago.

Assuming they haven't destroyed the film already, Coyote vs Acme will be the third film shelved for tax write-offs by WBD, after Batgirl and Scoob! Holiday Haunt. This is yet another terrible look for the studio and gives suspicion they were acting out of bad faith.

The most baffling thing out of all this is James Gunn co-wrote AND co-produced Coyote vs Acme.

Despite this, Gunn has NOT said anything publicly about the situation. This leads me to believe in two possibilities:

1) This whole ordeal is a cynical PR marketing campaign to hype up a supposedly great film, and an announcement to sell the film to another studio will be announced by the next earnings call in a week from now;

2) Gunn doesn't care if the Looney Tunes project he contributed is in danger of getting erased, because he's too busy hijacking the DC brand to line up his own pockets.

If this film is truly doomed and not even someone like Gunn's current standing in the industry can save it, then who is to say this DCU won't be dead on arrival? If I were Gunn, I'd do everything I could and call the studio out for destroying a film I worked on, instead of spin-doctoring every time there's bad PR affecting his DCU agenda.

Whatever the case is, this is yet another black mark on WBD's already tainted reputation. Directors, writers, actors and consumers need to start taking a stance against this shoddy corporate misconduct, because other studios are beginning to copy. Netflix shelved a sci-fi film starring Halle Berry a few weeks ago. This can't go on.
I'm surprised to read what Elfman had to say about his experience.

When B89 was in production, an idea was floated around that Prince should collaborate on writing the music with Elfman, but Elfman refused to do so because he knew he'd be playing second fiddle to Prince's ego. He even left the project, until he was brought back after the producers agreed to give him full control of the score. I never knew that. It seems there was a clash between writing an original score to make it distinct from the Superman theme by John Williams and an agenda to write pop music by Prince. Thankfully, they agreed to fit both into the final product.
I was looking up some info about the Organ Grinder, and in these two trading cards, it revealed that he was supposed to rob an ATM.

This idea was illustrated in the children's story book, The Penguin's Plot.

If this scene was photographed then the film footage was shot. I wonder why we never saw the footage to this day? I assume this would've been the original idea to introduce the Organ Grinder on screen until it was scrapped in favour of him firing his machine guns at bystanders.
The promotional character poster, as well as the election campaign poster within the film, shows the Penguin wearing his monocle and holding a cigarette holder in his mouth. In the film, however, the only time he is seen wearing the monocle is when he's researching at the Gotham Hall of Records and the only time we see him with a cigarette holder is when Josh gives it to him to reclaim his birthright before Penguin spits it out of his mouth in annoyance.

Along with the rest of the portrayal, I can imagine the most die-hard comic book purists at the time would've hated how these details were underutlised, but it makes sense in the film. It's a little unreasonable to expect him to keep these aristocratic details when he was abandoned by his own family and left to float alone in the sewers as an infant. Obviously, if he had not been born with these birth defects, Penguin may have adopted these accessories much more often.

Has anybody encountered anyone else having some gripes about the lack of these accessories worn by the Penguin?
I found this on Game Rant, but because I don't want to give any Screen Rant-affiliated sites the clicks, I'll just copy and paste what I found below.

QuoteGuardians of the Galaxy co-writer Nicole Perlman might not have been credited for her work on the Marvel Studios film if James Gunn had his way.

  • Allegations of bullying and attempts to undermine screenwriter Nicole Perlman's credit on Guardians of the Galaxy are further exposed in the tell-all book "The Reign of Marvel Studios."
  • Perlman's friend and co-writer, Zack Stentz, reveals that Gunn tried to push Perlman out of the Marvel circle and leaked information to undermine her credit.
  • Perlman, despite the controversies, credits everyone in the movie, including James Gunn, for making it beautiful; Gunn has not responded to Stentz's comments.

A close friend and fellow screenwriter steps in for Guardians of the Galaxy co-writer Nicole Perlman, adding fuel to the circulating allegations of what transpired between Perlman and James Gunn during the production of the Marvel Studios film.

Gunn had already been on a controversial path to becoming the new DC Studios CEO. His rise to DC started when Disney fired Gunn from Guardians of the Galaxy 3 for past reprehensible thoughts on Twitter and a pedophile-themed party that included a convicted pedophile. However, while this may be where Gunn's character was judged in the eyes of the public, it is not where those controversies began, as further allegations are now coming to light regarding alleged bullying tactics used by Gunn in an attempt to be seen as the sole writer on Guardians of the Galaxy against Perlman.

Joanna Robinson's book The Reign of Marvel Studios describes Perlman as having written the original story and screenplay for Marvel Studios' Guardians of the Galaxy, which included many iconic aspects seen in the movie, such as Star Lord's backstory and passion for retro music. Gunn ended up rewriting the screenplay, and despite Perlman still needing to be acknowledged as co-writer according to WGA guidelines, Zack Stentz, Perlman's friend and co-writer of the Thor screenplay, detailed the behind-the-scenes Perlman endured to receive credit. "Nicole had to knife-fight for her credit on Guardians of the Galaxy. But she is probably the preeminent female action tent pole writer now because she was the first woman to have her name on not just a Marvel movie, but on a Marvel movie that people really love."

Stentz goes further, detailing Perlman's thoughts and the lengths Gunn went to to push Perlman out of the Marvel circle. "She threw a party when the movie came out literally called the 'f*** James Gunn' party because she had won that very bruising credit arbitration. The thing that I'm still angry about, and I say this as a fan of James Gunn as a director, was that he very clearly was selectively leaking stuff to his friends and the fanboy media circles to undermine her credit," Stentz said. "When Matthew Vaughnn decided to have a temper tantrum over the fact that we got screen credit [on X-Men: First Class], at least he did it under his own name." In the book, Perlman stated that she "credits everybody in the movie, including James, for making it so beautiful." Gunn has not responded to Stentz's comments at this time.

While some entities like Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery would assume that Gunn has grown from his mistakes, others would argue otherwise with examples pointing to many of the tactics previously used on Perlman, prevalent in the media by statements that contradict the word of Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Zack Snyder, and Henry Cavill. While fans are eager to move forward with DC, an air of uncertainty looms over the DCU, with Universal rumored to be in the running to acquire WBD.

Perlman's interest in writing screenplays initially began with her passion for science fiction, and she has been involved with the Science and Entertainment Exchange to keep what audiences see in movies as real as possible. She received her writing credit on Guardians of the Galaxy for her original screenplay, which she said wasn't "based on any particular comic book." However, she went on to work on other movies while Gunn completed the screenplay for the Guardians of the Galaxy sequel.

I remember reading about how Nicole Perlman was really GOTG's baby, and James Gunn tried to steal credit, but this is the first time Gunn is condemned for his alleged behaviour.

I was skeptical about the first GOTG when it was being made, but I did end up enjoying it. It was a simple, entertaining popcorn movie, with a good balance of light-heartedness, adventure, and emotion. Having said that, I thought the hype for it was overblown, but it was still better than that awful second film, and now I know why. Aside from the moment when Drax calls a Gamora "a green whore", the first one's comedic tone was far less crass and repetitive compared to Vol. 2. Knowing the creepy suspicions surrounding Gunn's personal life, the themes of child abduction in both GOTG become even more unsettling.

Evidently, Gunn is a man who has support from the higher-ups and cast to get away with such questionable behaviour. I have to wonder, does somebody need to get physically hurt before he faces some accountability?

In other news, that article mentioning how WBD is rumoured to be bought by Universal was reported a week or so ago, with a sale estimated to be announced around late next year. Hopefully, that will scupper all plans for the DCU. After the disastrous year this year's slate has had, only crazy people would be willing to invest any more money on DC Comics productions.
The editing for the Axis Chemicals scene is pure gold.  ;D
I intend this thread to focus on 1978, but if you want to mention a fave scene from the Donner cut I guess you can do that too. No matter if it's finished or not, Donner's Superman was meant to be a two-part saga after all.

My favourite scene, in terms of emotion, would have to be Superman turning back time. The older I get, the more I've become critical of this scene because of the plot holes, but it's Reeve's performance that sells it as a spectacular scene. From the despair he feels over Lois dying to using that grief as a determination to undo her death and the damage the earthquake caused around California is still exhilarating.

But in terms of story, I believe the whole Krypton sequence is perhaps the film's strongest. Setting up the stage of Jor-El sentencing General Zod and co to the Phantom Zone, the restrained silence as the Kryptonian council dooms the whole planet and Jor-El and Lara saying their goodbyes to their infant son before narrowly making his narrow escape. Out of all the nostalgic things people heap praise for this movie, I hardly see anybody talk about how terrifying Krypton's destruction was. That, together with the destruction of LA in Cameron's Terminator films, used to scare me sh*tless as a kid. But moving on...

Baby Kal-El listening to Jor-El's recorded voice teaching him some of Earth's history before arriving in Smallville, and the cinematography throughout the whole sequence up to the first-person view of crashing on the farm, was exceptional for its time. Geoffrey Unsworth had a unique touch that was sorely missed once he had passed away.

Feel free to share your favourite scene/s in S78 if you wish.
From what I can see, this was taken eleven years ago, presumably from Facebook. It seems legitimate. Gunn has a notorious habit of running off his mouth on social media, and making highly questionable comments online, to say the least.

I wouldn't take it personally. The fact this POS scumbag "joked" about abusing women and children discredits any opinion he has.

Besides, he has absolutely no right to dismiss other directors' filmograpjy when he makes garbage like GOTG Vol. 2 and The Suicide Squad.
Batman: TAS (1992 - 1995) / RIP Arleen Sorkin
Sun, 27 Aug 2023, 01:13

Rest in peace to the original Harley Quinn. Still the best voice of the character to date, in my opinion.
For me, it would have to be that moment when he sacrificed himself to get kidnapped by the Penguin to spare his son, Chip. Just a little reminder that the man still had a bit of humanity to protect his own son, despite being a corrupt businessman.

What are your favourite scenes?
Right after praising Ben Affleck's unproduced Batman film and how it supposedly built 80 years of storylines for a new perspective, Jay Oliva shared the details for the planned Flash movies that never came to fruition. Here is what he had to say:

Quote"I worked with Seth Grahame-Smith, the first director who was attached to The Flash," Oliva says. "I did a storyboard for him. I did that test. I don't think I ever saw it, but it got the green light for the movie."

When Grahame-Smith left the project in 2016 over "creative differences," Oliva stuck around and Rick Famuyiwa came aboard as the new director.

"I worked with Rick for like six or seven months on that Flash movie, right up until Rick left [in October 2017]," Oliva says. "The cast was in London. They were building sets. When Rick left, I switched gears and did the reshoots for the ending of Wonder Woman."

While little is known about Famuyiwa's canceled Flash movie (the cast at times included Ray Fisher's Cyborg and Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman), one thing is clear: it was nothing like the movie released in 2023.

"Rick's movie wasn't the Flashpoint movie," Oliva says, before detouring into a brief DCEU history lesson. "Originally, there was supposed to be just Zack's five films and one side movie, which ended up being Suicide Squad." But after the success of Man of Steel, Warner decided to go all in on its cinematic universe. "Rick's movie was going to be a series of films, just like Aquaman. I think all of those films, they were planning to be trilogies."

The Flash movies would have been particularly important to the DCEU, however, because of a plan to introduce a classic DC villain: Eobard Thawne (aka, Professor Zoom or Reverse-Flash).

"Rick's movie was laying the groundwork for Zoom as the big baddy of the DC Universe," Oliva says. "It was Professor Zoom pulling the strings because he had come from the future to basically f*ck with Barry. In the Flash movies, Zoom would be the villain in the background. But also in the ancillary other films, you would see some of the influences of Zoom on the rest of the Justice League."

This all would have come to a head in a Flashpoint movie, which Zack Snyder revealed previously at a 2019 fan screening would have wrapped up his Superman-focused saga and served as a reboot for the entire franchise.

"At the ending of Zack's Darkseid quadrilogy, or whatever, we would end up with a Justice League Unlimited version of the Snyder-verse," Oliva says, referencing the popular 2000s cartoon that featured a sprawling roster of DC superheroes. "And then you flip it. You do Flashpoint Paradox. Everybody who's friends are now enemies, and it's a world that you don't want to live in. You can reboot the universe and introduce a new cast that way. Because after 10 years, the actors need to go onto something else."

For Oliva, that planned Flashpoint movie was also a chance to bring his original animated film to life, complete with its epic, world-destroying conflict between the Amazons and the Atlanteans. (In both the comic and the cartoon, the story hinges on a fatal love triangle involving Aquaman and Wonder Woman.)

"I wanted to really capture the grimness of the comic, but also lay the groundwork for adapting this as if it was a Marvel live-action film," he says of his 2013 animated film. "I just thought that would've been fantastic. Can you imagine Jason Momoa fighting Gal Gadot and then having that love story?"

"All of the missed opportunities," Oliva concludes, with a hint of whimsy. "Being a part of it was so exciting, and then having to shift gears and pivot. It's kind of sad. I would've loved to have seen it get to this point."

By dismissing the entire Snyderverse, the studio decided to take these old ideas and roll them into one for the Flash movie they ended up making, but adding Keaton's Batman instead of Thomas Wayne and removing Zoom for an evil version of Barry ...and it still flopped.

Although I wouldn't say I was the biggest Flashpoint fan out there, I do think it was a logical idea to use that storyline as an excuse to reboot DC after the whole Snyderverse arc was concluded. Studio apologists can twist their logic to blame Snyder for everything, but they're just denying the true reality about the studio's negligence and incompetence.
Unless you've been living under a rock, the whole entertainment industry has been hit by writers' AND actors' strikes because of the dispute over residuals on streaming, and the studios' desire to use artificial intelligence unregulated. As such, every film and TV production has been halted for the time being, and nobody is allowed to do any promo work for upcoming film and TV shows either.

Regarding AI, there is a lot of tension between both writing and acting unions over how their work could be replaced by this technology. As far as actors are concerned, this part is giving them lots of outrage and fear for their jobs:

QuotePerformers need the protection of our images and performances to prevent replacement of human performances by artificial intelligence technology.

  • Us: Here's a comprehensive set of provisions to grant informed consent and fair compensation when a "digital replica" is made or our performance is changed
    using AI.
  • Them: We want to be able to scan a background performer's image, pay them for a half a day's labor, and then use an individual's likeness for any purpose forever without their consent. We also want to be able to make changes to principal performers' dialogue, and even create new scenes, without informed consent.

    And we want to be able to use someone's images, likenesses, and performances to train new generative AI systems without consent or compensation.

This is ugly beyond belief. Whether it's an A-Lister, mid-range actor, or an extra - nobody should have their likeness recreated forever without their consent. What's the point of making films and TV shows then? You might as well stick to animation. But then again, if you can recreate actors' voices too, then professional voice actors aren't safe either.

There was even word going around that an anonymous film executive said they're happy to let the writers' strike go on until the writers start losing their homes, saying it's "a cruel but necessary evil". Well, with that sort of attitude, it's no wonder why a studio like WB has been a poisonous hellhole for the last several years.

I'm pretty impressed with how greed and ego are tearing Hollywood apart. Every creative person believes they are facing an existential crisis right now. If what SAG-AFTRA says is true, part-time acting jobs and background extras could risk becoming a thing of the past.

Well, all I can say is the more unions the better. Last week, it was revealed that WB Animation's department are trying to set up a union for their own profession, and there have been complaints in the digital effects world that too many artists have been overworked and exploited by Marvel Studios. Unlike the actors and writers, digital effects are not unionised.

How all of this is going to be concluded, and it will be concluded at some point, will be very fascinating.


I don't know about anyone else, but if I were accused of sexual harassment, I would never agree to settle and pay the person who is defaming me.

Extremely disappointing.

Despite it being only less than half an hour long, this was a good short film that works as a Shazam origin story.

Arnold Vosloo did a great job as the tyrannical Black Adam, and I enjoyed how he delivers his lines with such arrogance and contempt towards Billy and mortal beings. Adam's twisted analogies and God complex outlines his status as a villain, and how it perfectly contrasted Billy's kind-hearted nature. It may be simple, but's very effective.

Superman doesn't really have an arc, but he still plays an important role in this film; from Clark Kent showing an interest to report about poor and impoverished kids like Billy, to convincing Captain Marvel not to let his newfound power blind him from being the better person and use it to kill Black Adam once the fight was over. It's effective, and it's fun watching Superman and Captain Marvel team up. George Newbern as Superman is as solid as ever.

My only gripe is I'm not sure how Black Adam knew the Wizard chose Billy to become Captain Marvel. Putting that plot hole aside, this was still an entertaining little film.
This guy claims he worked on The Flash as a production co-ordinator, and gives some insight about why shoddy CGI in superhero adaptations is very commonplace nowadays. Especially in The Flash. In the first video, he gives a sobering insight into why the studios don't care about the quality of special effects anymore, and in the second video, he gives other examples of digital artists getting overworked, such as Across the Spider-Verse.

Complaints in the digital effects industry about people being overworked as they try to meet the studios' unreasonable demands have been discussed for a while now. Last year, Marvel Studios were heavily criticised by anonymous people working in the effects industry for being an extremely difficult client to work with. The biggest problem, as the first video says, studios care more about impressing their shareholders by announcing large quantities of films rather than the actual quality.

Here's the thing though: why would any shareholder want to invest their money on DC projects knowing the brand has been tainted because of horrible mismanagement? If you think actors, writers and directors should reconsider having any involvement with DC after the latest string of flops, spare a thought for the investors who pour money into these money pits. And we're supposed to believe this DCU slate is going to get made without hassle?
I'm taking into account the main show, MOTP and SubZero where certain characters' fates were left ambiguous at best.

In MOTP, three mobsters were killed: two of them were murdered by Phantasm - Chuckie Sol, Buzz Bronski, and Sal Valestra was murdered by the Joker.

In BTAS, Kyodai Ken most likely committed suicide in the volcanic eruption after his fight with Bruce, Penguin basically killed off the goofy uptight snitch by sending him down the drain in that giant rubber duck in The Mechanic episode. Two-Face's twin henchmen looked like they got whacked and collapse to the ground with their eyes wide open once Rupert Thorne arrives. In Deep Freeze, Grant Walker was given the worst way to go imaginable by being stuck at the bottom of the ocean, dooming him to eternal living death.

In SubZero, Dr. Gregory Belson was crushed to death while desperately trying to make his escape from the exploding oil rig.

MOTP was given more freedom compared to the show, which had to imply deaths had occurred but less overtly. Still, some of these fates I remember during BTAS added to the eerie atmosphere of the show.

Am I missing anyone else who had perished in this timeline?
Months after the sad news about Kevin Conroy's passing, key staff writer Michael Reaves had passed away a few weeks ago. He had his hand in a lot of episodes during BTAS's run, as well as contributing the screenplay for Mask of the Phantasm, and even wrote the teleplay of one episode for the original Flash show. A true veteran of children's television and science fiction.

I heard about this alleged plagiarism story last year, but I didn't think much of it because I have no desire to ever watch the movie and judge if these claims were real or not.

I thought it was very likely Chris Wozniak could've been a lying attention seeker, until not only did Chuck Dixon support the guy, he shared his own experience with WB and their shady dealings in trying to mine story ideas for content. As Dixon explained in the video embedded in that article, he had to carefully not name anyone directly to avoid getting sued, but you can tell he was talking about Michael Uslan, the long-time Batman film producer with who Wozniak has specifically accused of stealing his story. The fact that Dixon walked out of the meeting because he knew he'd get screwed over if he cooperated is a pretty damning look on Uslan.

Thinking about it now, I can see how the claims line up with some details over the years: how the Riddler was expected to be the new villain in Nolan's third film, how Sam Hamm's Batman copycat subplot in his canceled Batman II script ended up in TDK. It appears Uslan uses material he has access to adapt in future films, and it seems it does this without compensating anyone who came up with such ideas. The problem is the creators don't own the IP themselves, so they're open to being taken advantage of. Because of that, I can see how the studio hasn't done anything technically wrong, according to the law. It sucks, it may be unethical, but it's not necessarily illegal. The biggest problem facing Wozniak's case is he pitched his story treatment to DC and Uslan himself, so if he had ambitions to get credited for his work then he was extremely naive.

Nonetheless, Wozniak isn't holding back on Twitter, including the condemnation of facing a counter lawsuit by DC Comics for supposedly writing an unsolicited Batman story. Dixon reckons that's just as ludicrous as suing every person who wrote Batman fan-fiction.

I'm rather surprised Wozniak went so far to sue Uslan and WB, because last year he admitted in a livestream that he didn't have the money to take them to court and he knew how powerful they are. He's either brave or stupid, but he is determined to get this known by many people as possible. All I can say is if Wozniak is telling the truth 100% then I wish him all the best.