Well, ladies and gentlemen! For the first time in the history of their partnership, Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment have revealed that they have a plan. Not just a plan to make a single movie about Batman or Superman either. This is a long-term strategy to make over ten films, all DC properties, which will expand the universe that began in Man of Steel.
The recent news that Marvel has signed Robert Downey Jr. to co-star in [Captain America 3](movie:994409), has seemingly prompted Warner Bros. to counter with divulging their own plans. Here is the official lineup of upcoming movies, via BusinessWire:
- “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” directed by Zack Snyder (2016)
- “Suicide Squad,” directed by David Ayer (2016)
- “Wonder Woman,” starring Gal Gadot (2017)
- “Justice League Part One,” directed by Zack Snyder, with Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill and Amy Adams reprising their roles (2017)
- “The Flash,” starring Ezra Miller (2018)
- “Aquaman,” starring Jason Momoa (2018)
- “Shazam” (2019)
- “Justice League Part Two,” directed by Zack Snyder (2019)
- “Cyborg,” starring Ray Fisher (2020)
- “Green Lantern” (2020)
These films are to be released by Warner Bros. and New Line Picture (a WB subsidiary) according to their official business press release. However what isn't included on the roster are upcoming solo Superman and Batman films as well. In other words, expect to see a DC character in theaters at almost all times, starting in 2016.
What should be noted on first glance is that Zack Snyder is the official keeper of the Justice League universe. Not only is he setting the tone with Man of Steel and Dawn of Justice, but he will also be directing both installments of the Justice League saga.
[Wonder Woman](movie:45787) will be releasing in three years. That means that we can begin to expect firm confirmations and announcements on who will be fulfilling screenwriting and directing duties soon.
[The Flash (Movie)](movie:15273) will have his big-screen debut, confusing audiences all over the world, with their multiple universes of The Flash on the big and small screens. Unless this is Wally West, then they could have a lot of interesting fun.... Regardless, the choice of Ezra Miller is extraordinarily intelligent move and shows that they were looking for an actor of quality, not for the next heartthrob. WB has recently caught some flak for their rumored "no jokes" mandate. Perhaps, the mandate is to simply approach their properties with class and seriousness.
The epic story of Jason Momoa and the upcoming Aquaman film, can finally come to a close. We have been covering this story first-hand, for months now We learned he is an anti-hero and that he doesn't like being asked about Aquaman in interviews, before DC makes their official announcements. The story of the underwater ruler of Atlantis could be something that hasn't yet been realized on film yet.
After all the ruckus that Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson has made over his role as Black Adam, the Shazam film won't be hitting theaters for another five years.
A Cyborg solo movie is on the way. This is probably the biggest surprise property of the announcement. Cyborg is typically used as a supporting character in the DC universe. It will be interesting to see how they position, actor Ray Fisher and the character of Cyborg, to step into the spotlight.
With this announcement, it immediately makes things more clear for [Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice](movie:711870). Clearly the rumors of multiple heroes having cameos in the film has some solid truth to them.
It seems that WB has missed the opportunity to make their announcement with a big splash. However their impulsiveness is understood, when considering the huge waves that Marvel made earlier this week. Marvel Studios' Captain America 3 announcement hints at a master-plan far beyond what most insiders were predicting. Most thought their over-arching story-line would conclude with Avengers 3.
Warner Bros. is striking back by not just creating a movie universe. WB can now proudly plant it's flag as a studio pushing diversity, within the genre. Movies starring females and minorities have been rare to non-existent in the comic book film landscape... but by getting movies such as Wonder Woman and Cyborg in production they will be beating Marvel to the punch, at least publicly, who have been reluctant to get their own Ms. Marvel and Black Panther films on track despite already having built a world that could support the characters.
WB/DC and Marvel are in the first rounds of a long-term boxing match. Warner Bros. came out swinging, with their Christopher Nolan Dark Knight series. However, they got knocked to the canvas and were thought as washed up, as Marvel's empire grew and WB made films such as Green Lantern. WB got back on its feet and produced Man of Steel, which was like the smelling salt that woke them up. They began developing Dawn of Justice, which has earned back the attention of the public by teaming up Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman.
With today's announcement, it shows that Warner Bros. finally recognizes the potential of their DC Comics' library and are coming out ready to fight.
There is way too much story to cover in a single article. We will give you a second to digest it all... Come back daily as we follow up this announcement with many more details and analysis of the various films, as specifics are uncovered. We are living in the Golden Age of comic book movies. Embrace it.
So what do you think about the announcement? Let’s discuss the theories on the comment boards!
(Source: Point of Geeks, Business Wire Art Credit: Wee_Arts)