The CW is one step closer to bringing together the Justice League!
The network is developing Flash, a spin-off of Arrow which will feature speedy superhero Barry Allen. The character will be introduced in a backdoor pilot on Arrow during Season 2 before potentially spinning off into his own series.
"We plan to introduce a recurring character and an origin story of Dr. Barry Allen, who you now know is the Flash," CW President Mark Pedowitz told reporters at the Television Critics Association fall TV previews on Tuesday. "We're planning an origin story, we'll see how it goes and hopefully it goes well. We do want to expand on the DC universe. We've got rich characters that we can use and we thought this was a very organic way to get there."
Arrow executive producers Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg will executive-produce the project alongside DC Entertainment's Geoff Johns. David Nutter, who helmed the Arrow pilot, has signed on to direct the backdoor pilot. Marc Guggenheim, also an executive producer on Arrow, will not be involved with Flash.
Similar to how Barry Allen ushered in the Silver Age of the DC superheroes, he'll also usher some new concepts into the Arrow world, including superpowers, which have so far been excluded from the series as the producers strived to keep everything grounded in reality. "When we first meet Barry Allen, he's just a forensic scientist working for Central City Police Department," Kreisberg told reporters. "He's just an ordinary man when we meet him. As we always do on Arrow, we're trying to keep it grounded and realistic as possible. That is the way the audience will be introduced to Barry and get to know him before life gets a little bit faster."
Given that Arrow has kept its characters grounded in reality, it comes as a surprise that a character who possesses super-speed and superhuman reflexes would be introduced. "Our characters will react to the extraordinary changes to their world in hopefully a realistic way," Kreisberg said. "These 'powers' won't be treated as commonplace on the show. They will be extraordinary events, and our world and the characters in them will react accordingly."
"Despite the fact that he's got superpowers, I think there's something very relatable about Barry of all the big seven of the Justice League," he continued. "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."
In comparison to Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell), Barry is not a dark and tortured soul. "It'll be fun to see these two characters together because they both have distinctly different world views, while both caring very deeply about right and wrong," Kreisberg said.
"Barry's someone who's a cop, he follows the law and follows the rules, he's the last thing in the world you would ever think about as being a vigilante," Johns said, and Kreisberg noted that Barry will have an impact on Oliver's life as he embarks on his new mission to become a hero rather than just a vigilante.
Barry will first appear in Episodes 8 and 9 of the second season before the potential backdoor pilot airs as Episode 20, all of which will be written by Berlanti, Johns and Kresiberg. The first two episodes will bring Barry to Starling City, while the latter will be a bigger introduction into the world of Flash.
With Flash, the network has now assembled two of the main seven members of the Justice League, including Green Arrow from the flagship series. Last year, the network developed a Wonder Woman origin series, which would've been called Amazon, but the project is currently on hold. The CW was also the home to Clark Kent's Superman, though Smallville and Arrow do not hail from the same universe since the Green Arrow was played by Justin Hartley on the former series.
Flash would be the third spin-off for the network. The Vampire Diaries is launching the new series The Originals this season, while a backdoor pilot is being developed to spin off the long-running Supernatural.
Arrow returns Wednesday, Oct. 9 at 8/7c on The CW. Who do you think should play the Flash?
(Full disclosure: TVGuide.com is owned by CBS, one of The CW's parent companies)