Joe Manganiello Talks Pitching Deathstroke & Meeting For ‘The Batman’

Many uncertainties surround the DC Extended Universe but one thing is for certain: Joe Manganiello still has a desire to play Batman villain Deathstroke.

Deathstroke DC Comics

Ever since the behind-the-scenes issues of Justice League, Warner Bros. and DC have been keeping superhero movie release dates and announcements close to the vest. This week we did have news regarding the upcoming Birds of Prey movie and many people have been wondering what will be changed when we reach the post-Shazam! DC movies. Will we get a new Bruce Wayne in The Batman or a whole universe reboot? One star who is still on board despite all the issues is Joe Manganiello, who plays Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke.

Manganiello made his DC Extended Universe debut in the post-credits scene of Justice League, seemingly about to help Lex Luthor pull together the Legion of Doom. Manganiello recently appeared on Chris Hardwick’s ID10T podcast and discussed the creative meetings he had with Ben Affleck when he was still directing The Batman:

“When I met with Ben Affleck about Batman, the meeting we were having was for Deathstroke. This is a real opportunity to figure out who this guy is on the inside. Like what he’s battling with. The best quote unquote, I hate calling them this, ya know I don’t mind, but I you know calling them a villain is understanding where they’re coming from.

There are villains who are the people who are opposing them but from the inside this is a person who is struggling with all types of things. I think it’s really interesting to tell that kind of a story and tell the truth emotionally of a story like that when you’re talking about a man who lost an eye, was betrayed, lost a son. These different types of aspects.”

Deathstroke was originally set to be the villain of The Batman when Ben Affleck was still attached to write and direct the project but his replacement Matt Reeves is starting from scratch. This could mean that an entirely new villain will take center stage in The Batman. But, Deathstroke is getting his own solo outing from Gareth Evans, the director behind The Raid and its sequel. This is what Manganiello had to say about how his prep work for Deathstroke lured Evans into the project.

“What I love doing is in an instance like that I’m able to, at the ground level, I’m able to go back and pitch all of my work. So I’m pitching them: “This is where I think he comes from. This is where I think he’s going. This is the military background. These are some articles that I pulled for you. I also interviewed these people over here.”

The Ninjustu school- there are scrolls that are written that have these ancient techniques that are not shared with students that are locked away because somebody is going to go into a bar and rip someones head off using one of these techniques. What are those techniques? Where are they? Could there theoretically be somebody that would go around and learn these insanely offensive techniques and become this incredible killer?

I’m rooting it in the world. I’m rooting it in something honest so it feels real. Then we’re talking about the emotional content.

Somewhere along that way I know that it was announced where the studio.. there was talks with Gareth Evans and talks about an origin movie. I’m not giving news. I spent six months prior to all of those phone calls writing a backstory that was turned into sixteen pages which got turned into a treatment which then led to my Skype call with Gareth.”

While Manganiello says that he did have meetings with Evans and he did have a treatment, this doesn’t mean that a Deathstroke origin film is on the horizon or that he’ll make an appearance in The Batman. It could be canceled as of now or it could be in early development and eventually get scrapped but either way, it seems like there is a story to be told with that character in this universe that Manganiello has the hunger to chomp into.

Are you excited for a Deathstroke solo film? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: ID10T with Chris Hardwick