The Hulk Illustrated Screenplay

Saturday, August 2 2003

The Hulk Illustrated Screenplay from Newmarket Press is now available. In addition to the complete shooting script, it also contains a forward from Ang Lee, an Introduction by James Schamus and tons of new images. The screenplay will have to serve as the Directors's Cut of the film until the DVD is released. Buy the hard cover edition for $20.97 here or the paperback edition for $13.97 here.

From Ang Lee's foward:

The shooting script for The Hulk that you have in your hands (it is not so much a screenplay as a reflection in bare words of what we ended up with on screen) gives a good idea of where our journey ended, but is only a shadow of the adventures we had along the way. When I first thought about making this movie I had just finished Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and I called the Hulk my new "Green Destiny"- the name of the famous sword in Crouching Tiger that everyone chases and no one seems able to hold on to. The essence of this destiny is its elusiveness; it is a destiny that is never completely fulfilled. And that is what I loved so much about early Hulk comic books. The energy of Jack Kirby's drawings and the freedom of the stories Stan Lee created enabled me to dream of even greater flights of fancy and bursts of energy. They dealt with huge issues and fears, and found within those fears the will and imagination to understand them. I feel that everyone has a Hulk inside and each of our Hulks is both scary and, potentially, pleasurable. In fact, it's the pleasure that's the scariest thing about them.

I love tackling these huge topics that popular genres are so fearless in presenting to us. I have learned, as with Crouching Tiger, not to be fooled by their "pop" surface-they are much more difficult to make work than filmmakers often assume. But that is what is exhilarating about them. And the Hulk tackles two great genres-he is the first Marvel creature who is both monster and superhero. I think it's possible to treat this mixture in a very emotional way. The Hulk, like Crouching Tiger, is a weird combination of pop culture and realistic drama. I think by nature, these two aspects don't want to get along but I try to mix them.

How much should be realistic? If it's too realistic, how can you believe in a green giant or that people can fly? How to combine something that is visually exciting, very free, almost like a childhood fantasy, with the reality of psychodrama, comedy, romance? These are contradictory, elements, but to me, they represent the dilemma of my own life in filmmaking. The toughest thing for a filmmaker is to keep it balanced. It's like walking a constant tightrope and that's a thrill for me.

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