Arrow’s Producers Talk Opening Credits & “Starling City”

Craig Byrne October 8, 2012 4

This morning, we were one of several outlets who were able to speak with Arrow Executive Producers Marc Guggenheim and Andrew Kreisberg, Arrow lead actor Stephen Amell, and DC Entertainment’s Geoff Johns at the DC offices in Burbank, California, two days before the big premiere of the show on October 10.

The four talked about some really cool stuff in the amazing environment that is the DC offices. We’ll have more for you in the coming days, but first, we thought we’d post the answers to two frequently asked questions – Will Arrow have opening credits? and Why Starling City?

(You can also find some more tidbits from our visit on the @GreenArrowTV Twitter page)

So first is the question – will the show have a title card, like series like Supernatural do; or will there be a full blown opening credits sequence, like Smallville had? Andrew Kreisberg was the first to answer.

“We have a very, very cool title card,” he says.

Marc Guggenheim expanded on the decision, adding that they gave a lot of thought to it, and even tried a few title sequences. “What we’re really trying to do from a production standpoint is provide a cinematic viewing experience. We wanted it to look and feel like a movie, and at the end of the day, we found a very cool title card. It made it feel more cinematic, and just put you in this mindset of ‘oh, I’m going to go on for this really cool ride that makes me feel like I’m watching a movie.’ I couldn’t be more excited, actually,” Guggenheim says.

And as for that other question… one of the most controversial decisions the show has made…. more than giving Oliver Queen an alive mother and a sister who didn’t exist before, more than anything, really… is the naming of Oliver Queen’s home town “Starling City.” In the comics, and in other media like Smallville and Young Justice, Oliver Queen is based in “Star City.” Why the change?

Marc Guggenheim says it was another choice designed to keep the show grounded. “Star City, it sounds a little science-fictiony. It’s funny; it’s turned out to be, I think, one of the more ‘controversial’ decisions that we’ve made,” he acknowledges.

However, hope is not lost, and “Star City” will still be a part of Arrow. “There are posters in the pilot where you see ‘Starling City is a Star City.’ It’s the nickname of the city, the same way that the Big Apple is the nickname for New York,” he says. This can be confirmed in the first issue of the Arrow comic book, which will soon be distributed in comic book stores and at the New York Comic Con, which has a sign mentioning “Starling City is a Star City” on the very first panel. These Easter eggs are important to the show’s producers so that die-hard fans and newcomers alike will enjoy the show.

“If you’ve never picked up a comic book, if you have no idea who the Green Arrow is, you have no idea what DC Comics is, you can watch the show, come into it, and really enjoy it, and yet if you are a huge fan of the comics and the Green Arrow, you see enough of the DNA in the comic books, and enough of what makes the comic book special,” Kreisberg says. “Much to our both delight and surprise, we feel like we’ve found this magical formula that lets new people come in, and yet also pays homage to the people who have been fans forever. Hopefully we will be continuing that. Starling City was just one of those things where we didn’t want to alienate anyone by thinking the city sounded a little too outlandish, but yet, making that the nickname of the city, and you’ll hear that through the show, it honors the people who have been fans forever.”

Arrow premieres Wednesday, October 10 on The CW. Come back to GreenArrowTV soon for more and be sure to follow our Twitter feed @GreenArrowTV!


  1. Andy October 8, 2012 at 1:35 pm -

    I like that they did something different with the name of the city, but I still don’t understand how changing a name of a fictional city like Star City, to Starling City, counts as controversial?

    • cindercity October 8, 2012 at 3:39 pm -

      I think they’re saying it’s controversial because so many people lost their $*it over it, even though it’s not a big deal.

  2. Konkrypton December 7, 2012 at 11:44 am -

    To the die-hard fans, it IS a big deal. How many changes do you make to a story or a character before it’s not the same?

  3. Tav-El December 15, 2012 at 10:12 pm -

    I think they’re underestimating their audience if they think casual viewers are going to turn it off because they called it “Star City”. Comic book fans would appreciate the continuity. Heck, even I would appreciate it and I watch too much T.V. to read. The casual viewer, however, couldn’t care less what it’s called so really, the change was pointless. But, I did hear a fan theory that it’s a baby city now and after Oliver’s done with it, it turns into a full-grown Star…City.