I started writing on Moviepilot a year ago to the day (November 24th, 2015) and I brought to the website an older article that I wrote on a previous website called hubpages.com. The article was simply about my opinions and expectations regarding all of Warner Bros. and DC's 10 upcoming films in their DC Extended Universe (DCEU), which was in itself, a term I didn't even know at the time.
You'll see that my eye for design has changed drastically from how I write today. I guess a year's time writing will help you improve your style and form if you keep up the practice.
More importantly and the reason you've clicked on this article is because in that same year's time, we've been given an abundance of new information, pictures, and even footage for the upcoming DCEU films. But considering that last year's article literally took about 10 -15 minutes to read, I'm going to break these films down into individual articles which I will later link to each other as they are completed. I will also only be going through the two films that are due out next year since we know little-to-nothing beyond that at this point.
Now, let's start talking about one of next year's most anticipated films:
What we know about 'Batman v Superman':
- Released on March 25, 2016
This is a unique release date for such a highly anticipated film, but it proved to be a successful strategy when The Hunger Games was released as it had little-to-no competition in its same genre. Without a release date in the highly competitive season of Summer, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is sure to bring in the money.
The first opposition the film faces is from the February release of FOX's Deadpool film but that may be entirely inconsequential considering that the film will have been out for a month and a half before Batman and Superman take the screen together.
The second real competition Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice faces is the sequel to My Big Fat Greek Wedding, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, which may win over the majority of female audiences who want to start the weekend's dates off with a Rom-Com and who may not be entirely into the whole "superhero thing". It's not a film to be taken lightly considering that the first film was such a massive hit for its genre when it was released in 2002.
But I have every bit of confidence that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will still manage to come out on top by the end of its opening weekend, especially with the help of lucky viewers who get to attend the film a week ahead of its time!
- First time Batman and Superman ever shared the screen in a feature film.
This is the beginning of the creation of the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) even though this is the follow-up to the 2013 film Man of Steel, directed by Zack Snyder (Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Watchmen). But honestly, as much as I will be fan-raving about Justice League when it's released in 2017, I just love that such an iconic moment in cinema history is happening in the peak of my movie-loving lifetime. We are seeing Batman and Superman together on the big screen, in live action, for the first time ever. If you haven't seen the trailer, then you can check it out in the video below and see just how epic this twosome really looks sharing the screen in live-action cinema!
This is bigger than The Avengers making it to the big screen (that's not a jab at Marvel or its fans, it's just the truth). These are the two most iconic superheroes in the history of superheroes and we get to see them come to blows with each other and then probably become allied forces by the end of the film in anticipation of the Justice League.
- Inspired by Frank Miller's 'The Dark Knight Returns' but isn't an adaptation.
His work in the 1986 original graphic novel, 'The Dark Knight Returns,' has been celebrated for decades having become one of the defining examples of just how clever, ruthless, and capable Batman really is. We've seen his work adapted to original animated movies of the same name as well as seeing bits of inspiration of his work in the 2012 film, The Dark Knight Rises, directed by Christopher Nolan (Interstellar, The Dark Knight trilogy).
But although Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice does give us a visual aesthetic that deliberately pays homage to Frank Miller's 1986 graphic novel, director Zack Snyder has confirmed in an interview with Comic Book Resources, that it is not a completely literal translation of that story:
“I was talking to Frank about it: Dark Knight Returns was such a big influence on me, that I wanted to honor him through imagery in the movie,” said Snyder. “You could still make Dark Knight Returns into a movie, if you want. That’s what I’m saying, as far as how much we used and how much we didn’t use. The visual elements, there are some that I homage, but I don’t think the movie [is an adaptation].”
Any similarities are merely adaptations of some of the key elements of the 'The Dark Knight Returns' such as 1) Bruce Wayne/Batman being a weathered, older character who is seasoned in the crime-fighting vigilante occupation, 2) the Dark Knight going toe-to-toe with the Man of Steel himself, and 3) the suit in which Batman fights Superman is almost an exact, live-action replica of the Frank Miller, armored-Batman design.
Though as good as the story of 'The Dark Knight Returns' may have been and as excited as I am for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, I do hope that this is the last we see of Frank Miller-inspired Bat-films for a long while considering it's been done so much at this point.
- First time Wonder Woman will be featured in a live-action feature film.
Keep in mind the last point about Frank Miller's 'The Dark Knight Returns' not being 100% recreated in Batman v Superman. The point is further driven as the inclusion of Gal Gadot's (Triple 9, Fast & Furious 6) depiction of Wonder Woman is said to have an intricate part of the sub-plot or maybe even in the greater plot. We do get to see quite a bit of footage of Wonder Woman in both her alter ego as Diana Prince and as her super-heroine form, more than I think many expected. This is especially true when considering that she has been included on nearly every magazine with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice featured on the cover, and sometimes she's even front-and-center.
Many can speculate as to what exactly Wonder Woman's role in the film will be or just how involved she may be in the action sequences but we do know that her inclusion has something to do with furthering the Justice League's existence in the DCEU, as confirmed by Zack Snyder himself in an interview with Entertainment Weekly magazine:
"She plays a super-important part. In a lot of ways, she’s the gateway drug to the rest of the Justice League."
In order to figure out just how this plays out or comes to pass we'll just have to wait to see the film when it's released.
- Has a star-studded cast!
You know that there is a certain amount of prestige and credibility to the movie when six of the eight main cast members have been either winners or nominees or both for mega movie ceremonies such as the Academy Awards and/or the Golden Globes. Each actor brings something fresh yet experienced to the table, save for a few less familiar faces such as Henry Cavill (The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Man of Steel), who is mostly known for his inclusion as Clark Kent/Superman in the 2013 Man of Steel, and Gal Gadot, who is mostly known for her work in a few of the Fast and Furious movies as well as her modeling career. But that's not to say they don't have something to offer as well.
Then, to top everything right off, we have wonderful talent behind the camera with visionary director Zack Snyder, who always captivates us by his visuals, Chris Terrio, the Oscar-winning friend of Ben Affleck (Gone Girl, Runner Runner) who he collaborated with on Argo, and Hans Zimmer and Junkie XL on the score of the film who have done tremendous work on films such as Interstellar (Hans Zimmer) and Mad Max: Fury Road (Junkie XL); 'cause let's face it: when the film score is done right, it almost becomes its own character in the film.
There's obviously a plethora of other tidbits of fun information that have been revealed and will be reviewed even after this article is published but to list off every amazing detail would take up the entire article itself.
Those are the main points I've been paying attention to in regards to this film. March 25, 2016 cannot get here soon enough in my opinion and I very well may put all my faith in the future of comic book superhero films. If Batman and Superman cannot have an amazing film together on screen, no superhero deserves to be successful, and my excitement to see any more may plummet to disinterest. But, I have complete faith in the director, the writers, and the cast. 2016 is going to be a historic year for movies thanks to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.