James Wan Explains How AQUAMAN’s Characters Will Speak Underwater

Well, kinda. We're still not totally clear. But whatever this is sounds interesting!

In a new interview with IGN, Aquaman director James Wan says...well, he says all kinds of interesting stuff, actually! He pleads a case for Aquaman being the Wolverine of the Justice League, he says that whatever's being done with Aquaman in Justice League will help him decide "what works and what doesn't" when it comes time to build his own film around the character, and - most intriguingly of all - he answers a question I've long been wondering about: how will Aquaman's characters speak underwater?

Here's his response:

"...here's the thing I always say: if you have water in your lungs, like these characters do, there's no air bubble.

So I don't know... I just think in my movie, I want to kind of create... I love the idea of underwater speaking but with a real sort of sonic, aquatic quality to it. So there's this sort of aquatic, almost sonar/whale thing. Even though it's in a human language, there’s this slight sort of underlay to it, this ping to it, which I think would be interesting for us to design from a sound design perspective. Yeah, it will be fun. Also, Zack has some ideas that he'll be doing in Justice League."

I'll be honest: while I understand every word that Wan's saying here, I have no idea what all this might look like in practice. An "almost sonar/whale thing"? It'll have a "ping to it"? I'm trying to visualize that, and what's coming to mind strikes me as very goofy...but I'm also very intrigued by the entire concept, and curious to learn more.

Here's my (totally uninformed) guess: while large chunks of Aquaman will take place underwater, many of those scenes will also take place within Aquaman's city, and the structures that make up that city will not be filled with water. There'll be an air-filled, "indoor" element, and then there'll be scenes where Aquaman's out swimming around, riding his seahorse and stabbing things with his trident. Those scenes will feature some sort of "sonar dialogue". 

That is, again, a wild guess, but it's the only way this concept makes sense to me (the alternative - a movie which takes place almost completely underwater, with virtually every line of dialogue incorporating some sort of "sonar ping" - strikes me as unimaginably silly). 

What do you guys think?