Kick-Ass is set to hit DVD and Blu-ray on August 3rd. To help celebrate the release of this crowd-pleasing, action-packed superhero yarn, comic book creator Mark Millar stopped by for a chat. While discussing the film, he told us in detail where Kick-Ass 2: Balls to the Wall is headed. He also gave us updates on Matthew Vaughn's X-Men: First Class and their other collaborative project American Jesus, which has now been placed on the back burner.
Kick-Ass 2: Balls to the Wall begins with Hit Girl living with her newly adoptive father, who used to be Big Daddy's ex-partner on the police force. She has retired her guns and is no longer killing people. Meanwhile, Red Mist has hired a Russian Assassin to murder Hit Girl, while also assembling a group of super villains on-line who decide to hunt Kick-Ass down in a storyline that is similar to the one seen in The Warriors, which climaxes with a huge rumble in Times Square, where costumed heroes battle costumed villains to the death. Here is our conversation:
There has been a lot of talk about Kick-Ass 2. What is happening with that? And where would you like to see it go?
Mark Millar: I am writing the comic book right now. Matthew Vaughn is directing X-Men: First Class, which he will be doing until about April. I will have finished writing the new comic by Christmas. Then, in April, we will begin working on Kick-Ass 2: Balls to the Wall.
What direction are you taking the characters in the comic book, and how will that affect the film sequel? Especially with a character like Hit Girl. Chloe Moretz is growing pretty fast, and she has already outgrown her costume...
Mark Millar: The film and the comic book are very closely tied together. There are only a few minor changes towards the end. It does led directly into a sequel, and I am writing the sequel as I always planned it to be. The actors may be a little bit older, or bigger. They can address that in the movie. But I am not changing anything for the comic book. We left things off with her being adopted by this extremely nice man. He is a cop. And she has to stop killing people, you know? That seems like an interesting starting point in the next one in regards to her character. She is going to be like Clint Eastwood in Unforgiven, where she hasn't picked up a gun in years. It's that type of thing. I like the idea of doing that with an eleven year old girl. She was part of this massive cacophony of violence. But she's not allowed to kill people anymore. She is consumed with anger, and forced to watch TV shows instead. Halfway through the movie, or the comic, we will follow her as she picks up a gun again. It is going to be awesome.
And what about Red Mist? The character has a good heart, he's very empathetic, yet he's the villain in the sequel. How is that going to play out, especially in regards to the way he is written in the comic as opposed to the way Christopher Mintz-Plasse plays him on screen?
Mark Millar: This is a guy who has had his entire family killed by Hit Girl. He heads off and develops his martial arts skills. He learns how to become a better villain. That type of thing. He is going to come back and wreck unholy vengeance on our team. But in reality, he just comes back and gets stoned, and he spends a lot of money. He can't do anything, so he hires this bad ass girl from Russia, she comes into the story, and her plan is to kill Hit Girl. Red Mist becomes like Charles Manson. He goes on-line and influences a bunch of young villains to go against Kick-Ass and Hit Girl. The whole thing ends up as a big gang fight like you'd see in The Warriors. There is going to be a big gang fight in the middle of Times Square between all of these costumed heroes. And at the head will be the Red Mist and Hit Girl.
That sounds amazing. I see that you and Matthew Vaughn are working on American Jesus. Is that going to be your next project together after he finishes X-Men: First Class?
Mark Millar: We'd originally talked about doing either American Jesus or Kick-Ass, and Matthew decided on Kick-Ass instead. That was a couple of years back. Now he is doing X-Men: First Class. When he finishes that in April, we are definitely jumping straight into Kick-Ass 2: Balls to the Wall.
Where does that leave American Jesus? Will you eventually do that one? Or is it in eternal limbo?
Mark Millar: I think that film is going to remain in development Hell. Several people came forth to talk to me about American Jesus, and they wanted to make so many changes. Jesus movies are really hard for Hollywood. For some reason, Hollywood is very abashed to doing them. Even though they do quite well. Just look at The Passion of the Christ. But people would ask us, "Can you change the movie to where you don't actually have Jesus in it...But someone kind of 'like' Jesus?" That defeats the whole purpose. This film is supposed to be about the return of Jesus Christ, you know. So I have put it on the back burner. Because Matthew and I are going to do Kick-Ass 2: Balls to the Wall this next time around.
Now that Matthew Vaughn is directing X-Men: First Class, and you've worked on X-men titles in the past, did you have any insight or helpful suggestions that you could pass along to him?
Mark Millar: Yes. Matthew and I talk about it every couple of days or so. He knows his way around X-Men really well. He'll sometimes call me up and ask a couple of things. Generally, he knows what he is doing. About three years ago he was going to do X-Men: The Last Stand. He did about six months work on the film. He really got to know those characters. He is pretty well versed on it. Occasionally, he will call me and ask me to check on something. But he really knows that material well, man.