No. Alan Moore won’t be writing a sequel to “Watchmen.” Or a prequel. Or have anything to do with his legendary, genre-defining series with Dave Gibbons. But does that really mean there won’t be any more projects starring characters like Dr. Manhattan and Night Owl?
After an interview published by Wired today saw Moore saying that DC Comics had offered him rights to the original work back in exchange for work on “Watchmen” continuation projects, the future of the franchise remains as in doubt as it was months ago when rumors of a sequel rocked the internet. And while DC’s official word on how they’ll proceed next struck a tone of reverence for the original work while remaining cryptic about what their next move may be, the question everyone will be asking is “What’s next?” Today in advance of Comic-Con International in San Diego’s first day, CBR spoke with DC co-publisher Dan Didio about the news and how he and Jim Lee’s administration looks at previously unthinkable projects.
“Realistically, we naturally never really comment about any deals -Â perspective or ones that we close otherwise,” Dido said of Moore’s statements. “But the one thing that we’ve been saying for a while is that ‘Watchmen’ is truly one of the premier projects out there, and if we were ever to proceed with [a sequel] the most logical place to start would be with Alan and Dave. For me, it’s one of those things that’s still one of the crown jewels in comics, and if you ever wanted to approach it, you’d have to do it in that manner -Â making sure the best talent available and possible was working on it.”
The co-publisher had nothing more to offer on the specifics of the talk around more “Watchmen,” but when asked about how the new managerial style set in place by himself and his partner Jim Lee would look at projects that were previously seen as “off limits,” Didio had much to add. Asked about whether moves such as the publishing of Warren Ellis and Phil Jimenez’s “Shoot” issue of “Hellblazer” or the move to bring “Sandman” character Death into the DC Universe, Didio said that now was the time to consider moves that may haven’t been possible previously. “There’s a lot of decisions that have been made over the years that made sense as they were doing them. What we’re trying to do is approach everything with a fresh set of eyes and examine the different projects and different concepts out there and try to [ask] ‘What’s the best way to present them now? Is this still worth revisiting and going to?’ When it comes to printing the ‘Shoot’ story, there was a real strong reason why they didn’t do it then, but at this particular point, I think it was worth revisiting ten years later. Even with Death appearing in ‘Action Comics,’ that was again something where there was a real clear delineation between DC and Vertigo, but I think it was also worth revisiting as well.
“But now we’re constantly looking for ways to grow the brand, to grow the company and to get people excited about the books. There’s a lot of great product and a lot of great characters that we feel are worth looking at and bringing them off the shelves in order to make us the best company possible. That’s our job is to improve ourselves, and that’s where we stand.”