As the Senior Vice President for Creative Affairs for DC Comics, Gregory Noveck is the liaison between DC and Warner Bros. As such, he is a key part of the process of helping the studio find and adapt DC characters for film and television. In an interview with Voices from Krypton, Noveck explained the relationship between the two entities and why we won't see Brandon Routh, Tom Welling, or Christian Bale reprise their role as Superman or Batman for the upcoming Justice League of America.
When asked about the strength of the connection between DC and Warner Bros. during a film or TV project, Noveck said 'As I've grown in the job, it's gotten more and more. It's not necessarily a testament to me, it's more an understanding that we bring a lot to the table. It's also on a case-by-case basis and it's really driven by the filmmakers. In the case of Christopher Nolan (Batman Begins) and Bryan Singer (Superman Returns), they really want to know what DC thinks. Zack Snyder on Watchmen has been phenomenal. So the studio kind of responds to the filmmaker. In the last several years, even with Al and Miles on Smallville, they've hired people who actually have a reverence for the material and it all kind of drives from there.' Noveck further explained 'The thing that needs to be kept in mind is that beyond the actual film or TV show, there's a global brand to be managed here and DC is in the unique position of knowing where the vast majority of all of the moving parts are.'
Through Noveck, DC also has some ability to throw out 'red flags' if they feel their properties aren't being handled properly, though Noveck says they rarely do so for minor issues. 'If they wanted to make Superman's cape blue, for example, we'd say, 'You can't do that.' If they wanted it where Clark Kent never wears glasses, that's an issue. If the relationship between Lois and Clark felt false, we could comment on that. It's not that we can't say, 'Hey, could there be more action in this movie?' We can, but it's not really our call, it's up to the filmmaker.'
When asked about the possibility of Tom Welling (Smallville) being cast in the Justice League of America movie, Noveck answered 'Not happening, if for no other reason than it would just confuse the issue.' He further explains why Brandon Routh (Superman Returns) won't be appearing in the film either. 'I think part of it is that the character is larger than the actor. If you look at Batman, Superman and Justice League as separate franchises, if all of a sudden you have Brandon in it but you don't have Christian Bale (Batman Begins), then what movie is it? I think you have to have it stand on its own.'
Noveck finishes by pointing out the silver lining to having new actors play Superman and Batman. 'If there are a couple of guys playing Batman or Superman, at least those guys don't get pigeon-holed for the rest of their careers.'
CLICK HERE to read the rest of the interview.