‘Batman v Superman’ Scribe Chris Terrio Talks Influences, ‘Justice League’s Tone and More


In his first interview about his involvement with the DC Extended Universe, scribe Chris Terrio spoke with The Wall Street Journal about Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, as well as his work on Justice League.

Naturally, after landing the job of writing Batman v Superman, Terrio immersed himself into the DC Comics lore. He also took influence from Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy. “It’s impossible to know everything in the DC universe, but I threw myself into it and tried to learn as much as possible and I found such intelligence in so many of the comics. Obviously Frank Miller is a well-known and respected writer who influences this film very directly. Also writers like Grant Morrison, who asks difficult philosophical questions in an extremely smart way. I tried to take in as much as I could while also keeping a little bit of an outsider’s eye.”

When asked about conceiving the conflict between Batman and Superman, Terrio compared them to two gods in classic Greek mythology: Pluto and Apollo. “I began to think Batman and Superman occupy different parts of the mythic imagination. In superhero stories, Batman is Pluto, god of the underworld, and Superman is Apollo, god of the sky. That began to be really interesting to me — that their conflict is not just due to manipulation, but their very existence.” This is a very fascinating way to look at this iconic clash between the two heroes. Terrio also teases a “common humanity” that’ll come into play at some point during Batman v Superman.

Talk then turned to Justice League, which Terrio also wrote. Terrio was uncertain about returning to write Justice League, but after witnessing a scene between Jesse Eisenberg and Holly Hunter on the Batman v Superman set (comparing it to “great” acting in an independent film), he had a desire to continue telling this story.


Meanwhile, Terrio says that Man of Steel, Batman v Superman and Justice League make up one trilogy, while explaining why BvS is the darkest installment of the three. Batman v Superman is a bit of an Empire Strikes Back or Two Towers or any similar middle film in a trilogy. The middle film tends to be the darkest one. I do think from Man of Steel through Justice League, it is one saga really.” 

So, yes, Justice League will be lighter in tone than Batman v Superman. Regarding this tonal difference, Terrio explains, “I expect Justice League will be tonally not quite as dark as Batman v Superman. From that point of view, I felt compelled to go back and try to lift us and myself into a different tonal place because I think when you write a darker film, sometimes you want to redeem it all a bit.”

Terrio wrote Justice League Part One, which releases in 2017, but will he return to write 2019’s Part Two? Don’t count on it. “I have written Justice League Part One, but I won’t necessarily write Part Two. This has been the most rigorous intellectual exercise I’ve had in my writing life.” Terrio also teases what he is researching to bring each member of the Justice League to life. “For Justice League, I could be reading in the same day about red- and blueshifts in physics (The Flash), Diodorus of Sicily and his account of the war between Amazons and Atlanteans (Wonder Woman), or deep-sea biology and what kind of life plausibly might be in the Mariana Trench (Aquaman).” Very interesting.

For much more from Terrio’s interview with WSJ, where he discusses his “rigorous” commitment to the DCEU and introducing Batman and Wonder Woman in this world, click HERE.

[via Watchtower of Babel News]




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