Exclusive: Joe Carnahan on Taskmaster… and Preacher?

Next week, 20th Century Fox is releasing The A-Team, an action movie based on the popular ’80s television show directed by Joe Carnahan, one of our favorite filmmakers for his outspoken no-bull attitude. It may very well be the movie that finally breaks out Carnahan with mainstream audiences. 

ComingSoon.net/SuperHeroHype had a chance to speak with Smokin’ Joe about the movie earlier today, and we wanted to ask him about a project he had been rumored to direct a few years ago based on the Marvel Comics villain Taskmaster, who first appeared in "Avengers" #196. It had been some time since we had heard anything about this, so we were curious whether this was a real movie he was still interested in making or not.

He told us a little bit of why he thought the Taskmaster would make a cool movie:

"For Alex (Young, producer of "The A-Team") I was going to do Taskmaster. Originally I wanted to do Juggernaut ’cause I had a really good take on that, and then Taskmaster was something we talked about, and I haven’t discussed it with him for ages, but I would love to get back in. I love the idea of a guy with photographic reflexes, he can see something and repeat it, I thought that was such a cool idea. I think there’s a Moon Knight series where he just beats the sh*t out of Taskmaster and kind of ruined him, and it’s a cool character. I think it might be one of those Marvel characters you really need to reimagine because he’s got the whole skull and cape—it’s a bit grandiose I think—but it would certainly be a cool thing."

"It was very much in the realm of the Punisher," he continued. "It’s kind of funny because it’s almost what they were going to do with Deadpool, that same sort of smart-ass thing, before they went the way of–and I know that there are fans that hated Fox for doing that whole thing with Deadpool and Reynolds in ‘Wolverine’–but you have to create that differentiation. I think at least Taskmaster, he’s so below the radar. He’s even below where Blade was considered a B-tier Marvel character, this guy is even lesser-known. It would be a lot of fun to write it as a series and then see what came from there."

While that certainly sounds promising, we were even more thrilled when Carnahan offered to us his interest in making a movie based on Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s Vertigo comic book Preacher. This is a project that has been brewing for years, suffering in development hell before Mark Steven Johnson tried developing it as an HBO show, before returning to development as a feature film. Director Sam Mendes was interested and a script was being written by John August, but then Mendes left to direct the next James Bond movie. Of the directors who have been mentioned, Carnahan certainly would make a good choice considering how his own style of writing and filmmaking meshes so well with what Ennis and Dillon were trying to do in "Preacher."

"I’m kind of desperate to do another comic book adaptation," he told us. "And the other thing I’m really keen on or interested in is ‘Preacher’ because I’m a big Garth Ennis fan and I love that series and that’s out there, and that might be something… I really love that. You gotta do the Allfather (D’Aronique) and all that crazy sh*t and I haven’t seen a script and I don’t know what it is, but yeah, we’ll see. Who knows?"

Look for our full interview with Carnahan over on ComingSoon.net next week before The A-Team opens on June 11.