'Green' Movement21 Jul, 2011 By: Fred Topel
While Marvel Comics superheroes have dominated the big screen in recent years, adaptations of DC Comics properties have been less prominent. Green Lantern is the first movie based on a major DC superhero who isn’t Superman or Batman.
Though the character enjoys one of the richest mythologies in the DC canon, filmmakers couldn’t fit everything into one movie, which leaves plenty of material for home video.
“I’d never worked on a movie that required this much imagination,” says the film’s star, Ryan Reynolds. “It felt like I was a kid again.”
Reynolds plays Hal Jordan, the test pilot whose encounter with a dying alien leads to him becoming a member of the legendary Green Lantern Corps, an intergalactic team of peacekeepers armed with mystical green rings that convert willpower into energy. As such, the film is filled with space travel, alien planets and green accessories created by the rings.
“Everything you’re seeing in this world, you have to imagine,” Reynolds says. “Granted, we do have amazing people that are working behind the scenes; Grant Major, not the least of which who’s our crack production designer who created a lot of the worlds for Lord of the Rings and those things, would come down with visual references so I had an idea what I was looking at. I have to imagine what that is, and then express it through my eyes for the audience, and that was a big challenge.”
For Peter Sarsgaard, who plays the film’s villain, scientist Hector Hammond, the experience had more to do with makeup than CGI. As a result of his study of alien life, Hector’s brain grows throughout the film until he is left with a giant head. Filmmakers tried many prosthetics before what is seen in the finished film, which should provide ample fodder for behind-the-scenes material.
“We had that one that was quite large,” Sarsgaard said. “We tested one that I was like, ‘This is … I can’t.’ I couldn’t do it. That head pushed down on my eyes. I couldn’t open my eyes.”
One of the film’s producers indicated there is plenty of unused material relating to Hector’s role in the film.
“There are some nice bits that were excised from the final,” says producer Donald DeLine. “Some cool things you might see that Hector did at a certain point that didn’t make the final cut that are kind of fun. They might involve some small animals.”