December 23, 2014

Joe Lynch Digs Suggestion To Direct Netflix PUNISHER Series And Has Approval Of Lexi Alexander

We have one more cool thing to add before heading-off for the holidays. While we've been seeing Marvel lining up actors for Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage (where is our Iron Fist?) for the eventual big team-up Netflix series The Defenders. We've been curious what wave two of the Marvel-Netflix series could look like.

Characters like Punisher, Moon Knight and Blade have been serious contenders, since film adaptations of these mostly R-rated characters seem unlikely to hit screens anytime soon. Marvel is going to focus on more family friendly material that would likely mean PG-13 content. The talk of Netflix series being more dark and taking a "PG-16" approach could help Marvel go all the way with the second wave. Drew Pearce has could be interested in a Punisher short, and the Russo Brothers jokingly hinted Castle was in Winter Soldier.

There was a cool suggestion recently of seeing writer-director Joe Lynch (Knights of Badassdom, Everly) handling a Punisher series for Netflix. What does Joe Lynch think about this suggestion? He responded via Twitter with a brief statement of interest. Let's hope we get a pitch from Mr. Lynch to Marvel down the road.

Joe could be a bit more vocal about this desire when he starts the press tour for his female-driven action flick Everly. The current go-to question in the press these days is if directors or actors are interested in comic book projects. A perfect platform for Joe to get his campaign out there.

UPDATE: Here is the badass  trailer for Everly and it gives-off the potential of what Joe could do with the Punisher material.

This would be Joe's first Marvel character he's tackled. He made the Venom short Truth In Journalism which was set in the bootleg Marvel universe. Funny enough, the bootleg universe also includes a Punisher short with Thomas Jane reprising the role. It's a cool short but obviously too dark for Sony, even though we've already suggested Joe to be considered as the director of Venom. Since we've seen directors Gary Ross, Josh Trank and Alex Kurtzman jump-ship.

You can tell he enjoys comic books and even waxed poetic about badass female characters at Comic-Con this summer, while promoting Everly. A new series could also give us Castle's protege Rachel Alves, and Joe would be great at adapting her story/motivation.

What does the last film's director think of this choice? Well Punisher: War Zone's Lexi Alexander also took to Twitter giving her support to Joe, stating she would be "ecstatic". Lexi is also actually curious what happened with Fox's Punisher pilot.

That seemingly happened around the same time Lionsgate gave the rights back to Marvel Studios. The relationship between Fox and Marvel have been heated lately. You might have missed this, but The Punisher actually kills the cast of Fox's Fantastic Four reboot in a recent comic book. Could this maybe explain why that Punisher pilot never saw the light of day?

It goes even further when there's talk that Fantastic Four and mutants are being phased-out of the comic books. A thumb into the eyes of Fox who rely on Marvel to promote their Marvel properties in the comics and other media. A major issue with Marvel  problem is whenever they create new characters for either Fantastic Four or X-Men comics, Fox automatically get's the rights to use them in movies. Phasing both comics out means Marvel is free to expand their film universes without helping Fox. Marvel's Inhumans are expected to be slowly replacing X-Men's mutants, and could be a way for Marvel to move forward without the X-Men. It's also another way to explain new characters entering the MCU as well without their bizarre backstories.

Oddly enough, Fox was also trying to make a series around Moon Knight as well but that didn't come together either.

What does this mean for the future live-action Punisher stuff? Talk has since gone around that Marvel Studios should consider taking a series to HBO, Showtime, AMC or FXX. While this could have excellent potential, Marvel is now working with Netflix as their production partner. Remember, original series like House of Cards and Orange Is The New Black are R-rated material, so they wouldn't be opposed to giving these R-rated Marvel shows a home. Considering Netflix and Marvel have already partnered for five shows, the next wave happening there as well seems like a no-brainer.

We've seen that Marvel finding creatives to head-up each show so far. Marvel hiring Spartacus' Steven D. Knight (with scripts from Lost's Drew Goddard) making Daredevil and Dexter's Melissa Rosenberg making Jessica Jones (along with giving us our first episodes with Luke Cage). The expectation is that a Punisher series would be in need of a writer-director with an action background. I have a feeling Joe Lynch would make an excellent choice to head-up a series like Punisher.

I wouldn't rule-out John Wick's Chad Stahelski getting involved with action work with Marvel in the future as well. Fingers crossed he get's a call as well.

I'm doubtful Marvel will want to see Ray Stevenson reprise the role, but since his Thor contract will be up soon he could stick around. Here are a couple of suggestions if Marvel does end-up recasting. Actors I'd like to see in the role include Karl Urban (Lord of The Rings, Star Trek, Dredd, Almost Human, Red, Bourne Supremacy), Clive Owen (Children of Men, Bourne Identity, Killer Elite, Shoot 'Em Up, The Knick, Inside Man, Sin City, The Driver) and Joe Manganiello (Spider-Man, Knight of Cups, Magic Mike, True Blood, Sabotage).

What do you think? Should Marvel make Punisher a priority for their second wave of Netflix shows? Also, should Joe Lynch be the guy to mastermind that series for Marvel?

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