After news broke of a potential "Arrow" spinoff series featuring the hero known as The Flash, Barry Allen, producers Andrew Kreisberg and Geoff Johns participated in a conference call with reporters to share more details on the character's introduction to the "Arrow" universe.
Find out when Barry will appear on "Arrow," potential costume choices and why he was the first Justice Leaguer they considered for the spinoff below.
Note: Questions and answers have been edited and condensed for clarity.
How will you introduce Barry Allen into the "Arrow" world?
Kreisberg: When we first meet Barry Allen, he's just a forensic scientist working for the Central City police department. He's just an ordinary man when we meet him … as we always do on 'Arrow,' we like to keep things as grounded and realistic as possible, and that is the way the audience will be introduced to Barry and get to know him before his life gets a little bit faster.
He won't be entering "Arrow" with powers, but will he be leaving with powers?
Kreisberg: That's part of the fun for the audience, the ride and to see how we do our "'Arrow' take" on the Flash legacy. Some of it feels very familiar and iconic and some of it will feel hopefully different but fresh and exciting. The same way we approached 'Arrow' is the same way we're approaching Barry.
Johns: But he does need powers to become The Flash -- he will be The Flash.
Will Barry's appearance signal the introduction of superpowers to the "Arrow" universe in a major way?
Johns: Barry Allen, when he first appeared in Showcase #4 … he ushered in the Silver Age of DC superheroes. In the same way, he's going to usher in some new and pretty insane concepts to the "Arrow" world. But in a very grounded way.
Kreisberg: Our characters that people have really come to know and like in "Arrow" will react to the extraordinary changes to their world in, hopefully, a realistic way. These "powers" won't be treated as commonplace, they will be extraordinary events, so the world and characters will react accordingly.
Why did you decide to start with The Flash as a spinoff character, and did you ever consider anyone else?
Kreisberg: It really started with Greg Berlanti; The Flash was his favorite character as a kid growing up, and he's obviously been a strong personal favorite of both Geoff's and mine, so when Greg approached us one day and said, "hey, what would you think of doing The Flash as a spinoff?" we all lit up. Despite the fact that he's got superpowers, there's something very relatable about Barry, of all the Big 7 of the Justice League. He got his powers by accident, he isn't a god, he wasn't seeking this out, it came to him … His reactions to that feel very human and grounded. Oliver Queen is a very dark and tortured soul, and Barry is not. I think it'll be a fun bi-play to see these two characters together; they both have distinctly different world views while caring deeply about right and wrong.
Johns: There's something really compelling about Barry Allen's personal story, and some of that you see in the comic books, but we'll really be exploring his life as a forensic scientist and the people around him and the tragedies that he's had to face himself and how he deals with them in a very, very different way from Oliver Queen.
If the spinoff doesn't go for any reason, would you keep Barry on "Arrow"?
Kreisberg: We're really not looking that far ahead -- we're really focusing on these episodes of "Arrow" that Barry Allen is partaking in. For this season especially, this is in addition to "Arrow." We're not trying to take away anything from "Arrow," we're really trying to add to "Arrow," so for now that's our singular focus.
Johns: We're really focusing on making these episodes the very best they can be -- Flash deserves it.
Will Barry interact with Oliver in a meaningful way in his first two episodes, and will there be friction between them?
Kreisberg: Oh yeah, absolutely … as excited as we are writing for Barry, we're really excited about what Barry's arrival is going to mean for Oliver, for Digg, for Felicity, for everybody. He's a great character who's going to affect all of our characters' lives.
Johns: He's a cop, he follows the law, he follows the rules; the last thing in the world he'd ever think about is being a vigilante.
Kreisberg: They're both going to learn from each other, so when Barry comes into Oliver's life, he's going to have a profound impact on it. We don't do these things as gimmicks, we figure out what it's going to mean for our characters and what's the most exciting story we can tell our characters, and for this season, especially as Oliver is embarking on a new mission of trying to be a hero, he comes into contact with somebody who, as much as Oliver now thinks he's being the hero, Barry won't always think that.
What will The Flash costume look like?
Kreisberg: For right now, just meeting Barry Allen, CSI, we're not really focusing on potential costumes. That's further down the road. We're going to do what we did when we started with "Arrow," which is write a great script and look for an amazing actor to fill the part.
How many episodes will Barry appear in this fall?
Kreisberg: He'll appear in episodes 8 and 9 and 20.
Johns: 20 will be directed by David Nutter, and that will serve as the [spinoff] pilot.
Kreisberg: Episodes 8,9 and 20 are going to be written by Greg Berlanti, myself and Geoff.
How are you planning to visually render The Flash's super-speed? Will it be like Clark's in "Smallville"?
Johns: It will be very different -- it will not be blurry lines.
Kreisberg: We're very excited to show something new, something people have never seen. We don't want to do what people expect or they've already seen. We really want to do something fresh and new and exciting and give people a real cinematic experience on TV the same way that they got from "Arrow."
Johns: There's also some great visuals in The Flash comic book currently by an artist named Francis Manapul that are really inspiring ... And there's a DC animated film called "Justice League: Flashpoint Paradox" that came out today, ironically, it was directed by a guy named Jay Oliva … there's some sequences in there, I've never seen super speed like that before, we're getting inspired by every incarnation of Flash everywhere and beyond that.
What are you looking for physically from the actor who will end up with the role?
Johns: Barry Allen isn't typically a very physical guy. That said, he's got to be athletic and he's gonna be running around quite a bit … but he won't have to do those crazy pull-ups.
Kreisberg: Nobody can do the crazy pull-ups like Stephen.
Johns: I think Green Arrow might show off in front of Barry Allen.
Will we see other characters from Barry Allen's universe in his "Arrow" appearance?
Kreisberg: 8 and 9 will take place in Starling City which Barry has come to. Episode 20 will be a bigger introduction to Barry's world and these first episodes are really Barry coming to the "Arrow" world.
Johns: Ultimately, yes, you will see Barry Allen's and Flash's world starting to form [in Episode 20].
Are you excited to see The Flash on the small screen? Hit the comments with your casting wishlist!