(Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Television)

James Mangold Describes DCU’s Swamp Thing as a Stand-Alone Gothic Horror Movie

Swamp Thing writer-director James Mangold shared he envisions the upcoming superhero movie as a stand-alone entry in the DC Universe.

During a recent interview with Variety, Mangold admitted he’s approaching Swamp Thing from an entirely different angle than that of DC Studios.

“While I’m sure DC views Swamp Thing as a franchise, I would be viewing it as a very simple, clean, Gothic horror movie about this man/monster,” the director stated, adding that he has been “toying for years with the idea of making a kind of Frankenstein movie.”

When Mangold learned that James Gunn and Peter Safran had taken over DC as co-CEOs, he “put in a friendly call” to suggest himself for Swamp Thing.

Swamp Thing is part of James Gunn’s new DC Universe

Swamp Thing was announced by Gunn and Safran in January 2023 as part of the DCU’s first slate of films and television series. Mangold — perhaps best known The Wolverine (2013) and Logan (2017) — confirmed his involvement in Swamp Thing during Star Wars Celebration 2023 after previously hinting at being attached to the film in February 2023.

Created by writer Len Wein and artist Bernie Wrightson, Swamp Thing first appeared in House of Secrets #92, published by DC Comics in 1971. The character was originally an idealistic scientist named Alec Holland. After his tragic murder, Holland is resurrected as Swamp Thing — a vegetative creative with his memories, personality and grief. The upcoming DCU movie will serve as the fifth live-action adaptation of Swamp Thing.

The character previously headlined two 1980s films — Swamp Thing and The Return of Swamp Thing — as well as two television series, both titled Swamp Thing, that were released in 1990 and 2019.

Mangold’s Swamp Thing movie does not have a release date at this time.