'Sin City' Gets New Blood, And Robert Rodriguez Explains Why

Joseph Gordon-Levitt

"Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" won't be entirely recognizable to "Sin City" readers. Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller's sequel to their 2005 hit comes packed with brand-new stories set in the noir world of Basin City, including one yarn called "The Long, Bad Night," featuring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as cocky gambler Johnny.

Why mix in completely original tales with the comic book storylines fans are already familiar with? Rodriguez has a very clear answer, as he explained to MTV News: "The first film was based solely on existing material, and we thought, wouldn't it be fun to go a little bit different with this? Rather than just bring books to life that people are already familiar with and can go out and buy and know what's going to happen, what if we created a couple of new stories from new characters that still intertwine with some of the ones that exist and have an element of surprise for the audience? And for storylines that we really liked, let's pay them off, have them come full circle from the first movie and build a real arc."

The result is that there is now what Rodriguez calls the "Sin City" book saga, and the "Sin City" movie saga. "We decided, let's make this a real saga, kind of capitalize on things we loved in the first film with some of those characters, and then bring in new ones to the family," he explained. "It's a great mix of material that you know if you're a fan of the books, and then it turns and takes you by surprise. You don't know where it's going to go or what's going to happen."

Key to those surprises is Gordon-Levitt as one of the film's new leads — a character that JGL himself describes as "a quintessential Rodriguez badass."

"He's great," said the filmmaker. "He was busy with a project he was directing and then our timing ended up fitting perfectly with his schedule and we've been talking for a couple of months hoping that we could get it to work."

At the moment, "Sin City" is the only comic book movie officially on Gordon-Levitt's plate, despite the fact that he's rumored to play Batman in "Justice League" and was once reportedly up for Star-Lord in "Guardians of the Galaxy." Rodriguez said he's not surprised at all to see JGL's name at the heart of so many rumors.

"It's understandable," he said. "I think he's one of the hottest actors out there, especially in that age range right now. He's just always been fantastic and people love him, which is part of the reason why I wanted him for Johnny: he's very likable, he's somebody that you root for him right away."

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