You might be the biggest DC superhero nerd in your town, maybe even your state. You might be able to tell me, quicker than The Flash can pick up a refreshing can of Diet Woke at the store, the name of the comic where it's implied that Batman disappoints Black Canary sexually by climaxing at lightning speed. You might even have some vague understanding of what the hell is going on in Rebirth.
But despite your all-conquering geekdom, there's a high chance you no longer have any clue whatsoever about when the complete line up of comic book movies promised/threatened by the #DCEU will actually arrive, and in what order.
The DC movie timeline shared by the studio before Batman v Superman has shape-shifted into something else entirely — of all the planned DC comics movies, The Flash is on ice, Justice League 2 has been pushed back, spin-offs like Gotham City Sirens seem to be coming sooner than straightforward sequels (still no Suicide Squad 2 on the horizon, folks, which is probably not the worst thing), and hell will freeze over before Cyborg happens.
With that in mind, I thought I'd try and piece together a list of new and upcoming DCEU movies coming out in 2017 and '18, through to 2020. Disclaimer: It's based on reports by reputable sites about which movies are in development right now and when their release dates will be (#DC themselves are keeping schtum), a well-educated guess rather than hard fact, so don't come at me with Harley Quinn's baseball bat if things don't work out in quite like this. So tentatively, here's our round-up of all the upcoming DC movie releases in order!
10. Wonder Woman
- Release date: June 2, 2017
- Director: Patty Jenkins
- Cast: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright
The low down: Directed by Patty Jenkins, #WonderWoman pips Marvel to the claim of being the first female-fronted superhero movie since Elektra. That and #DC's gloriously awful Catwoman basically persuaded studios that nobody wanted female superheroes, so the pressure's on for Wonder Woman to deliver, impress the critics and make money. Trailers so far are super solid, and visually this looks much brighter than Zack Snyder's DCEU efforts.
9. Justice League
- Release date: November 17, 2017
- Director: Zack Snyder
- Cast: Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa
The low down: The ever-controversial Zack Snyder is back behind the camera for #JusticeLeague. Despite being well into pre-production before the epic Batman v Superman backlash hit, it looks as if Justice League is going to be much lighter in the DC movie line up, even if it's clearly still part of a dark universe.
Snyder's trademark visual style is all over the Justice League trailer, every frame bursting with superb VFX work. The movie's villain is Steppenwolf and the general consensus seems to be that he's a prelude to our meeting with DC's all-time most-powerful entity, the fearsome warlord Darkseid. Justice League will be huge, but more than that, it needs to be great.
- Release date: Dec 21, 2018
- Director: James Wan
- Cast: Amber Heard, Jason Momoa, Nicole Kidman
The low down: Directed by James Wan, most famous for horror hits like The Conjuring and the blockbuster beast Furious 7, the solo #Aquaman movie begins shooting in May 2017 in Australia.
Aquaman, who looks like the breakout star of Justice League, is the King of Atlantis, a hero who may have been a bit of a joke in years gone by, but looks nothing less than badass embodied by the terrifyingly huge Jason Momoa. Aquaman's killer cast also includes Willem Dafoe, Nicole Kidman, Patrick Wilson and Amber Heard as Mera.
Its Christmas release date brings Aquaman into direct competition with Disney's live-action sequel Mary Poppins Returns, but it feels like a surefire hit regardless.
7. Gotham City Sirens
- Release date: March 2019?
- Director: David Ayer
- Cast: Margot Robbie
There's some confusion over when we're getting this one, but it appears to be the furthest into the development stage of all the non-dated movies. Suicide Squad director David Ayer gets a second chance, returning to helm this bad girls' adventure starring Margot Robbie as #HarleyQuinn plus, in all likelihood, Catwoman and Poison Ivy. There's been some speculation that Jared Leto's Joker will be back, too.
There's also some talk of Black Mask getting his movie debut. Production on Gotham City Sirens is expected to begin this year at some point, but with Aquaman shooting sooner, it's highly unlikely that we'll get Sirens in 2018.
6. The Batman
- Release date: July 2019
- Director: Matt Reeves
- Cast: Ben Affleck, Joe Manganiello, Jeremy Irons
Everybody is familiar with the saga surrounding The Batman at this point. The much-hyped solo #Batman movie was meant to be written and directed by the Batfleck himself, Ben Affleck, before he dropped out of directing for personal reasons. DC eventually appointed Matt Reeves as the new director. Reeves is super-talented and his War For The Planet Of The Apes hits theaters this July.
Not much word on what The Batman's story entails, except that Joe Manganiello was confirmed to play Deathstroke, and will presumably still have a role. Alfred (Jeremy Irons) and our new Commissioner Gordon (J.K. Simmons) will also return. Production begins sometime in early 2018, so expect to see The Batman in theaters around a year later than originally planned.
5. Dark Universe
- Release date: November 2019
- Director: Doug Liman
- Cast: TBA
Out of the blue last August, we learned that Doug Liman had dropped out of directing X-Men spin-off Gambit and would instead direct Dark Universe for DC. If you're not familiar with the name, it's how the DCEU is rebranding Justice League Dark to avoid any confusion with the actual Justice League (there are no crossover members).
The line-up should include the magician Zatanna and the foul-mouthed, chain-smoking British occult detective John Constantine, who feels like an obvious breakout character. Everything's been very quiet on the Dark Universe front so far this year, but Liman's continued attachment as director means the creative process is probably coming along behind the scenes. It will begin shooting either this year or next.
4. The Flash
- Release date: March 2020?
- Director: TBA
- Cast: Ezra Miller, Billy Crudup, Kiersey Clemons
#TheFlash was originally supposed to hit in 2018, but has now hired and lost two directors, and has yet to find a third. Warner Bros. don't seem to be in any rush with this one — star Ezra Miller has a major role in the Fantastic Beasts sequel to occupy him until the creative elements fall into place for the scarlet speedster.
Kiersey Clemons is already cast as Iris West and has a small cameo in Justice League.
3. Green Lantern Corps
- Release date: June 2020?
- Director: David S. Goyer (rumored)
- Cast: TBA
We know almost nothing about this movie, and until Variety's reliable insider Justin Kroll reported that it's a contender to begin filming this year or next, it was beginning to feel like DC had put the kibosh on Green Lantern Corps.
We don't even know which Lanterns will feature, although obviously Hal Jordan and John Stewart are the best bets. No word either on who's been cast (if anyone has yet), suggesting this movie is behind The Flash on the schedule. Green Lantern Corps could feasibly arrive somewhere around June 2020, but don't pin too much on that.
2. Suicide Squad 2
- Release date: August 2020
- Director: TBA
- Cast: TBA
A four-year wait for a sequel to Suicide Squad may not be ideal, but Harley Quinn was the main attraction and audiences will see her in Gotham City Sirens, giving DC time to find a new director for #SuicideSquad2, and perhaps work out some creative issues, including coming up with a more interesting and better-developed line-up of anti-heroes for this second Task Force X adventure.
Expect Viola Davis to return as the formidable Amanda Waller.
1. Justice League 2
- Release date: November 2020?
- Director: Zack Snyder
- Cast: Gal Gadot, Henry Cavill, Ben Affleck
Zack Snyder was originally attached to direct a Justice League sequel with a release date of May 2019, but the director will now be taking on a non-DC passion project of his own after completing work on Justice League. The franchise is his baby, though, so don't expect DC to hand this sequel to another director. They'll wait for daddy.
No word on the plot yet, but it will almost certainly revolve around Darkseid, one of the most fearsome entities in the history of DC Comics.
Other Movies In Development: Expanding The Bat-Family
As if all of the above wasn't already confusing enough (bear in mind that at least two of those movies will probably get pushed back, or just won't get made at all), there are also at least four more DC movies currently in development which don't fit into the timeline.
The recently-announced Batgirl and Nightwing are in the early creative stages, with Joss Whedon attached to write and direct the former (yes, Joss Whedon of The Avengers fame — let the fanboy wars commence). Nightwing will be helmed by Lego Batman director Chris McKay.
Then there's a Black Adam movie starring The Rock as the arch-nemesis of Shazam!, and a Man Of Steel sequel with Henry Cavill. Geoff Johns recently skirted any discussion of a potential Wonder Woman sequel, so don't hold your breath for that.
So, there you have it — the simplest possible timeline of upcoming DCEU movies. As mentioned above, DC has way more films in development than they can actually follow through on making, so it will all end in tears for a few of these projects. Ultimately, though, it's a strong slate which should put this universe firmly on the right track over the next three years.
Which DC movie are you most stoked for beyond 2017, and which do you think will never make it to screen?