Currently braving the tropical heat of San Juan for his adaptation of the DC/Vertigo title, The Losers, Stomp the Yard director Sylvain White is already keen on his next project: Frank Miller’s Ronin.
“It’s still being developed,” an eager White told SuperHeroHype.com, “I just got a new draft a week ago. It’s looking really good and promising. I hope it gets to go… [Mine is] a big-budget, big blockbuster take on it. I’d love to do it in 3D. I think it’d be ridiculous and amazing.”
The comic book, released in 1983 and 1984 by DC Comics, blends feudal Japan with a darkly futuristic, cyberpunk New York city, telling the story of a reincarnated Ronin and his final showdown with the soul of the man who killed his master.
“I think it’d make a brilliant video game as well,” says White, “something along the lines of ‘Assassin’s Creed’ but from a first-person perspective. I think it’s just a great property and a great concept. It’s got so many ideas in it in terms of commentary and philosophy. Frank Miller is a genius when it comes to that. It took so long because the source material is so complex. It’s very difficult, and it’s not linear, and it doesn’t really fit into a film format off the bat. It’s not a straight adaptation like ‘300’ was or even ‘Watchmen.’ It’s not as simple. Zack [Snyder]’s going to kill me. [Laughs] But I think with ‘Ronin’ we need a little bit of streamlining, otherwise it’s too esoteric. You need a little bit of streamlining, but the story and the characters, if I get to do that movie, will all be there. I’m the guy who wants to respect the authors and the source material as a fan of graphic novels who grew up reading them whether it be in Europe or here. It’s something that needs to be done right, and it hasn’t really been done right.”
White also claims that he’s not worried about becoming pigeonholed as a comic book director because of the great differences between properties like The Losers and Ronin and that his takes on each are wildly divergent.
“The fortunate thing is that ‘Ronin’ is some Frank’s earlier work,” says White, “What’s great and what for me works in the graphic novel, aesthetically-speaking, is the design of Aquarius… the design of New York. So I would pay homage to him more in the production design versus the actual frames. The frames in ‘Ronin’ are some beautiful frames, and some I would go with, but what’s beautiful to me about ‘Ronin’ is the production design and the character design and the colors that are used. I think framing â€“ you can frame things with much more depth and beauty on film than you can in a graphic. Replicating frames… that’s a different language. You want to always stay true to the graphic novel, but you’re watching a different medium. You never want to remind the audience that they’re watching a graphic novel or [an adaptation of] a graphic novel source. You just want them to watch a great movie. And if they know it’s based on a graphic novel, awesome. And if you make the fans happy because you paid good tribute to the source material, awesome. I don’t think you make fans happy by just replicating frames. What they want to see is that you stayed true to the story, true to the characters and true to the design.”
The Losers is slated for release on April 9, 2010.
Source: Silas Lesnick