So I mostly went to the Warner Brothers screening (which consisted of Watchmen, Friday the 13th and Terminator: Salvation) to see Terminator footage (okay, and to stare at Jared Padalecki for a while). And when we were told they were showing the Watchmen intro footage that they'd shown to the press, I sighed -- not because it wasn't awesome (it was), but because I'd already seen it and was hoping I'd at least get a little something else. I'm greedy like that. And very impatient. But then the teeming masses were informed that we'd get a little bit extra... that no one had seen before. Then, all of a sudden, I was on the edge of my seat.
I re-watched the opening scene with the Comedian fight and the astounding opening credits and saw even more than I did last time. But then they showed what came after that, which is the police trying to figure out why anyone would have wanted to kill the Comedian, and who this guy who apparently had met the president was. There's some speculation on how exactly someone goes through a plate glass window, too. Then Rorschach goes to the Comedian's apartment after the police have left the premises and looks around at all of his belongings. Each is filled with such meaning, like every gorgeous picture of Sally Jupiter that is hanging around the place. And then he finds the Comedian's secret closet, filled with all of his hero garb and memorabilia. Each piece just looks so painstakingly crafted. I wish I could have a screen grab so I could stare at it all. And let me just take a minute to say how amazing Rorschach's constantly moving mask is. It's mesmerizing.
We also got a peek at a fabulous short scene of Walter Kovacs (a.k.a. Rorschach) in prison, putting a guy's face into hot grease. Intense and incredible. It got loud cheers from the enthusiastic crowd.
Gibbons came out to address the crowd briefly. Here are the highlights of what he had to say:
On the changes to the ending:
"The MacGuffin is different, but the outcome is the same. I wasn't upset at the changes. Hopefully you won't be either. The most important thing is that it has to stand as a good movie. I think the reality of it is that you have to make changes, you have to take things away to make it work in a different medium."
So no squid? Will it be on the DVD?
"Will the squid be on the DVD? Why is the squid so important? I suppose that, in a sense, the squid is like a huge special effect that Adrien Veidt calls in the comic book. It's like a practical joke. A trick. But if you've got a movie which is essentially full of special effects, the squid is just another special effect, if you see what I mean. I think that wouldn't have worked as well in the movie. That's my personal thinking about it. So... sorry to all you cephalopod lovers out there. I had some really nice calamari last night. I have suggested that after the premiere we go out for calamari. We'll get the squid in at the end."
Is there a way to prevent a sequel or prequel?
"The situation is that if they want to make a sequel or prequel, there is nothing I can do to stop them from doing it. I will say that, over the years, DC -- on least on occasion -- was very tempted to do a spin on a sequel or one thing or another. Wiser heads prevailed, and they left it alone. I think, ultimately, that was the completely correct decision. I think if you add anything to Watchmen, you're not really enriching it, you're diluting it. While I'm very supportive of this, and I love what they've done with it, I don't think you'll find me on the stage at a comic convention talking about a sequel. My counsel would be, 'Leave well enough alone.'"
On Alan Moore:
"Is your question, 'Is Alan Moore batshit crazy?" What do you think I'm going to say to that? Alan isn't crazy at all. Alan is one of the most rational and sane human beings I've ever met. He is a man who doesn't do things by halves. As you know, he's not involved with this movie. The reason was nothing to do with the production or Zack Snyder or anything, but in the past he's been not very well treated by Hollywood. He made up his mind [to stay out of all movies]. To you or me, or lesser mortals, we'd just say, 'Okay, I don't know anything about it. I'm done talking about it. But you can put my name on it just in case it is good. And if it makes any money, I'll have it.' But Alan isn't like that. Alan says, 'I don't want to be involved. Don't put my name on it. I don't want any money from it at all.' In Hollywood terms, that is batshit crazy, because Hollywood is all about credit and cash. But I completely respect Alan's decision. This is my first experience with Hollywood, and I've been treated very well. Alan and I are still friends. We still exchange Christmas cards. I really hope this will be a great movie that will only enhance Alan's reputation. And if nothing else, it will sell loads and loads of graphic novels to people who have never read his works before, and hopefully they'll come away [appreciating] his genius and go out and buy his other books as well."
So are you in or are you out for Watchmen? Decide now, and let us know below.