Audiences encountered Charlie Cox as Daredevil in She-Hulk. Thus, Disney took advantage for the first time of the version of the Marvel superhero developed by creator Steven S. DeKnight for Netflix. Shortly, in addition, the actor will put on the uniform again in Daredevil: Born again, his new solo series. And, according to the screenwriter, this resurrection of the character is a complete business “scam.”
To be exact, the screenwriter forged in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and creator of Spartacus described the title change of Daredevil: Born again as “a fucking scam.” “It's an old Disney scam where they slightly change the name of a series to reset the conditions of the contracts to its first season,” she openly explained from her social media accounts in a conversation with an industry worker.
Daredevil was one of the characters that Disney, through Marvel Studios, had temporarily transferred to Netflix along with Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, The Punisher and Iron Fist, which also had their own series. In March 2022, the studio regained the rights to exploit the characters as it wanted and for the benefit of Disney, its content platform.
A reboot was soon announced that would revive the character, bringing back Charlie Cox for the role and Vincent d'Onofrio as Kingpin, the most memorable villain of his time on Netflix. Screenwriters Matt Corman and Chris Ord took charge as creators and Kevin Feige, supervisor of all audiovisual works in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, would serve as executive producer. “It will be something totally new,” Cox said at the D23 Expo.
According to S. DeKnight, however, this change in creative direction also hides the economic incentive of not compensating those who popularized Cox's Daredevil, in its breakthrough moment on Netflix. “I'm looking forward to seeing Charlie Cox and the wonderful Vincent D'Onofrio reprising their iconic roles. But claiming that this is a complete reboot and that you don't have to pay the original creatives is, at the very least, corporate chicanery,” he expressed loud and clear.
He also accuses the company of having the habit of slightly changing children's and youth productions to reset the contracts of all the members of the team and thus save the costs associated with seniority: "I am happy to take the hit if it sheds light on the hateful practice." to retitle children's and youth programs in order to avoid paying their teams the well-deserved increase in their contracts.”
Regardless of Disney's right to exploit the character and reinterpret it for its streaming service (and taking into account that the sense of violence in Netflix's Daredevil will be reduced), these statements lead us to formulate the following: Is the expectation around Daredevil : Born again is due to the character returning or to the fact that the public who followed the three seasons of Daredevil on Netflix will be able to meet again with the versions of Daredevil and Kingpin designed by S. DeKnight and performed by Cox and D'Onofrio?
For DeKnight, furthermore, it is not about resentment for losing creative control of Daredevil: he took charge of the project to offer his version of the blind superhero but left after one season. “I was only involved in the first season,” he acknowledged. He wanted to direct a film that, as so often happens in the industry, in the end was never made.
In fact, he loved “what each showrunner did in the second season and in the third season” and is also looking forward to seeing what the newcomers can do in Born again, in the same way that he is happy about the project for Charlie Cox that “is the best of all of us” and whom he describes as “polite, caring and genuinely wonderful.”