JUSTICE SOCIETY: WORLD WAR II Interview: Liam McIntyre On Getting To Play A Badass, Very Different Aquaman

Talking to us about his role as Aquaman in Justice Society: World War II, Liam McIntyre (The Flash) reveals why playing this badass Arthur Curry was a dream come true, and how he found the right voice...

Justice Society: World War II arrives on streaming platforms on April 27th, 2021, and hits 4K Ultra HD Blu-Ray and Blu-Ray on May 11th, 2021. This next entry in the DC Animated Universe sees The Flash thrust into the midst of an epic battle between Golden Age DC Super Heroes the Justice Society and Nazis for an adventure that definitely doesn't play out the way you might be expecting. 

Picking up with Barry Allen in the present day, prior to the formation of the Justice League, the Scarlet Speedster discovers he can run even faster than he imagined, and that milestone results in his first encounter with the Speed Force. Arriving in WWII, he finds himself joining forces with a Golden Age team made up of Wonder Woman, Hourman, Black Canary, Hawkman, Steve Trevor, and Jay Garrick.

When we were fortunate enough to catch up with Liam McIntyre to discuss his role as Aquaman in the movie, The Flash and Spartacus alum talked us through what it was like to bring a very different take on this character to life. That included finding a new voice for the Atlantean superhero, and it sounds like getting to do that proved to be both a challenge and honour for the Australian actor. 

Don't forget to check out Liam's comments on the possibility of returning as Weather Wizard in The Flash and the chances of playing live-action versions of his two huge Star Wars roles. 
 

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It must be fun to be out here promoting Justice Society: World War II with everything going on in the world right now?

Yeah, the film is super cool. It’s always nice when you watch one of these and go, ‘Oh, we did a good one!’ It’s been so cool. I’m really proud of this and I think this is an excellent example of a superhero film. It’s a good film in its own right, there’s a fascinating animation style that they’ve chosen, and I’m really excited about it. 

There was a time Aquaman was considered a bit of a joke, but that’s changed now. Was it fun for you to add your take to that new perception with a badass take on the character? 

Jason [Momoa] is one of the coolest people I’ve met in my life. I was like, ‘I get to follow that guy? Excellent.’ I agree. It’s interesting. I remember Family Guy would do a skit with him riding dolphins and he’s saying something like, ‘Come a little closer to the sea so I can get you.’ Now, especially in this, he’s a badass and it’s awesome. I love what they’ve done with him. 

Your Aquaman is a little more regal than, say, Jason Momoa’s; where did you look for inspiration for your take on Arthur Curry?

The great joy as the actor is that you bring your nuances to a fully-formed character these writers and the whole team have created. On the page, he’s a different Aquaman. I think that’s a smart choice because Jason’s take is so wonderful. This is a very different time and look at who he can be. This Aquaman, as you watch it, it’s a surprising take on the character. I love it. On that first day, it was really fun because I was workshopping in the booth with the whole creative team. Who is he going to be? Who is this guy given what we know about the script and what we have on the page? He’s more a version of Aquaman that is the regal, not quite magic, less the son of a lighthouse keeper. He’s more mystical in some ways and certainly comfortable in his power...and used to using it. He's also more isolated from the surface world. It was interesting finding this mid-Atlantic voice where he’s part-English, part-American, and all Atlantean. Trying to find what that sound is was great. It was a really enjoyable experience to find who this guy was and try to make him unique. 
 

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You’re no stranger to these DC animated films after voicing Captain Boomerang, but what was your reaction to being offered the role of a big name superhero like Aquaman?

That’s one of those things where you say, ‘Are you sure? Do you want to ask again?’ [Laughs] Captain Boomerang was such a riot, and to lean into that Australian-ness of him was really fun. I don’t know who they had to talk into it, but I remember it was this thing where one of the guys came to me and said, ‘Look, no promises, but if Aquaman came around, would you think you might want to do that?’ Are you kidding me! It’s amazing. That’s the thing, I’ve personally never found Aquaman the funny Justice League member. I’ve always thought it would be super cool to be the lord of the ocean. Poseidon is one of the cooler God of the ancient world. He’s obviously in that same frame. When they ticked all the boxes and asked if I'd like to do it, it’s one of those rare moments in an actors life where it’s like, ‘This is one of those things that when I’m old, I’ll say, 'Guess what grandad got to do? He got to be Aquaman.’' To me, that’s just such a joy. It’s a privilege. It’s one of those characters you’re honoured to play and one of the O.G. Justice League members. It’s unbelievable 

Without getting into spoilers, you get to develop a darker side of Aquaman in this movie; what was fun about exploring that aspect of the character ? 

It was a shock! I had a bunch of ideas about what being Aquaman is, and then they gave me the script and I said, ‘Oh wow, where are we going with this? This should be interesting.’ It was cool that he’s very complex and I love the struggle he has throughout this film between the realities of his situation and the desires he has in his heart. It was again a completely unique take on this character and, correct me if I’m wrong, but I haven’t seen that before from him in this way. I just think it will be a fascinating surprise for the audience. That’s my hope. He’s really conflicted and it’s very complex, and as an actor, it’s a joy to try and find a role that has this much of a challenge in it. It’s really cool. 

It feels like we’re due another Aquaman animated feature, or certainly a sequel to this film. Would you like to reprise the role somewhere down the line? 

Oh, I’d love that. It’s been such an honour playing him. If I’m worthy of the green and gold supersuit, I’d love to be part of that world moving forward as the character, but we’ll see. It’s up to better people than me to decide, but I’d love to. 

Also Read: JSA: WWII Director Jeff Wamester Explains His Fresh Take On The Golden Age Team
Also Read: Matt Bomer On Playing The Flash, How It Compares To Superman, & More
Also Read: Elysia Rotaru On Her Badass Black Canary And Why She Loves She-Hulk
 

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