One of the most anticipated comic book adaptations for television has to be the upcoming Netflix series Daredevil, which stars Charlie Cox as Matt Murdock, Deborah Ann Woll as Karen Page, Elden Henson as Foggy Nelson and Vincent D'Onofrio as The Kingpin/Wilson Fisk.
In a new interview with Entertainment Weekly, Cox, Marvel's head of television Jeph Loeb and showrunner Steven S. DeKnight reveal some new details for the series and what Daredevil fans can expect in the show's first season. Here are some of the highlights...
"This season is about both the rise of the hero and the rise of the villain," said Loeb.
Added DeKnight more specifically, "Fisk has very many different aspects so it’s not all, ‘I want to conquer the city and make a lot of money.’ In our story, we tell the story of how he met his wife Vanessa and how they fell in love — our antagonist actually has a love story. That’s the love story you’re following, the one you’re invested in, and seeing how that affects him and changes him. I think Vincent just brings such depth to it, his performance is just astounding."
On the subject of Daredevil's tone, DeKnight remarked, "We really wanted to take our cue from [films like] The French Connection, Dog Day Afternoon, Taxi Driver, and make it very, very grounded, very gritty, very real. We always say we would rather lean toward The Wire than what’s considered a classic superhero television show.
Added Loeb, "There aren’t going to be people flying through the sky. There are no magic hammers. It does take place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It’s all connected. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that we would look up in the sky and see [Thor]. It’s just a different part of New York that we have not yet seen in the Marvel movies."
As for Daredevil being "The Man Without Fear," Cox said, "Someone who does not have fear — literally does not experience fear — is not that interesting. The way I like to think about it is that he is a man with fear, but he on a daily basis decides to confront that fear and to overcome it. So the title of ‘The Man Without Fear’ is almost a title that the public in his world gives him just because of what he does. But inside himself, he’s very afraid at times. And he finds a way to confront those fears and punch through it."
DeKnight revealed that Daredevil will have more graphic content than Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter, but won't push too many boundaries. "When I came onto this, there was no way I wanted to make this hard-R or NC-17," he said. "I don’t think the material warrants that. It is a little grittier and edgier than Marvel has gone before, but we’re not looking to push it to extreme graphic violence, gratuitous nudity or anything like that. The story does not require that and I think would suffer if you pushed it that far."
And what about Daredevil's enemy Bullseye? Well, it seems he won't be in Season One, but Season Two could be a possibility. "I wouldn’t say there’s no plans to include the character in the series," said DeKnight. "It’s not to say he wouldn’t be in the series at some point, but I think if you try to jam in too many characters, it just becomes a mess. And [Bullseye’s] story was told in the last iteration of Daredevil that anybody saw. My feeling was, ‘Why repeat it?’ And honestly, if you’re looking for a juicy, multi-faceted crime drama, Wilson Fisk was the obvious choice to play the antagonist. Bullseye is a little more cut and dry. Not to say you couldn’t make him fantastic over thirteen hours, but Fisk really felt like the right yin to the yang for Matt, and for what we wanted to do this season."
Daredevil is expected to be released on Netflix sometime in May 2015.