Tag Archive | "Justice League"

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Warner Brother Announces Slate of DC Comics Films Through 2020, SUICIDE SQUAD, CYBORG In Line Up

Posted on 15 October 2014 by William Gatevackes

upcoming-dc-films1While Marvel is still holding what their films will be close to their vest, Warner Brothers has scored a shot across their broadside by announce their DC Comics film slate through 2020 at a shareholder meeting today. And, naturally, there are some surprises.

The line-up is as follows:

March 25, 2016: Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice
August 5, 2016: Suicide Squad

June 23, 2017: Wonder Woman
November 17, 2017: Justice League

March 23, 2018: The Flash
July 27, 2018: Aquaman

April 5, 2019: Shazam
June 14, 2019: Justice League 2

April 3, 2020: Cyborg
June 19, 2020: Green Lantern

I don’t know what your yardstick for success is, but Nikki Finke called four of the ten films on the list back in June, five or six if you want to give her credit for having Flash and Green Lantern get movies, even though she predicted one team-up film instead of two solo movies. One notable exclusion from her list to this one is Sandman, which was being actively developed by David Goyer and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. One has to wonder if this means the film has stalled or has been cancelled completely.

Or perhaps it will just take a lot of time to go through development. Suicide Squad has been in development since 2009 and will finally hit screens seven years later. The concept revolves around a group of superhuman criminals forced to work for a government agency carrying out suicide missions.

Another surprise entry is Cyborg, which will likely feature Ray Fisher in the lead, a young man who has most of his body replaced by weaponized mechanics after a lab explosion. This is another point in DC/Warner’s favor, as it marks the first African-American superhero to get his own solo feature film (that is if you don’t consider the supernatural horror character Blade to be a true superhero). This will beat Marvel to the punch, as they had a Black Panther film in development for years will no movement on a release.

20121010-ezra-306x-1349892097The presentation finally confirmed that Jason Momoa will be playing Aquaman and announced that actor Ezra Miller (left, known for We Need To Talk About Kevin) will be playing The Flash. This puts the final nail in the coffin of many a fans’ dream of having a crossover between DC’s film and television properties. Even though he looks younger, Miller is only 2 years younger than TV’s Flash, the remarkable similar looking Grant Gustin, so it is unlikely that he will be playing the Flash’s protege, Wally West. Personally, I think Warners is missing out on a great opportunity here, considering the DC Characters’ TV presence is far more prevalent than Marvel’s at this point, which gives them a great chance to cross pollinate their properties.

And, the way that it is represented, it looks like the Ryan Reynolds Green Lantern film is going to be rebooted. Good. Try not to screw the concept up again.

It appears Warner’s has learned their lesson and have given at least one week’s worth of breathing room  between any of their DC films and Marvel’s cinematic output. It’s nice to see them playing nice.

As you can see in the graphic above, Warners also announced that the Harry Potter tie-in Fantastic Beasts & Where To Find Them will be adapted as a trilogy, an installment coming every two years from 2016 on. We will also be getting three more Lego films. a Ninjago film in 2016, Lego Batman in 2017, and an official sequel, The Lego Movie 2, in 2018.

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Warners Registers Four URLs For Superhero Films

Posted on 03 September 2014 by Rich Drees

justice-league-tabled

Warner Brothers have been very sush-sush about their plans for their superhero films post 2016’s Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice. We think we know what they have in store, but that is just supposition right now. And that supposition just got a little more evidence supporting it.

According to the folks over at Tech Times, the studio has just registered the following domains –

  • JusticeLeagueFilm.com
  • ShazamMovie.com
  • WonderWomanTheMovie.com
  • AquamanMovie.com

Hardly the move of a studio not planning on making those films, is it?

Currently, the domains redirect to Warner Brothers main webpage, so that is a good indication that they are legit registers and not someone trying to squat on the domains in advance of the studio trying to acquire them for themselves.

We’ve already known that the studio has cast Gal Gadot and Jason Momoa to appear in Batman V Superman as Wonder Woman and Aquaman respectively, so it makes sense that their would be solo films in development. And it has all but officially been announced that there will be a Justice League film.

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What We Know (Or Speculate) About Warner Brothers’ Rumored DC Comics Movies

Posted on 17 June 2014 by William Gatevackes

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Rumors that Warner Brothers would be announcing an ambitious slate of seven DC Comics films at the 2014 San Diego Comic Con caused a lot of buzz this week, but while there were some surprises, we do have a lot of information on most of the films. And those we don’t, we’ll be willing to speculate. So, without any further ado, where what we know and what we think we know.

batman-vs-superman-dawn-of-justice-logoBatman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice

Release Date: May 6, 2016

Who Are They? Batman and Superman are the two most famous superheroes on Earth. If you are not at least passingly familiar with them, then you probably aren’t reading this article, are you?

Previous TV and Movie Appearances: Too many to mention.

What We Know: Quite a bit. It has started production. Ben Affleck will be Batman, Jessie Eisenberg is Lex Luthor, Jeremy Irons is Alfred. The film will at least feature Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher).  Oh, and there will be a football game between the colleges in Metropolis and Gotham.

What We Speculate: The film will eventually lead into a Justice League film (which hasn’t been officially confirmed, except, well, by the sub-title). Jason Momoa was rumored to have signed on for the film, perhaps as Aquaman, a fact the actor has denied, stating that he was not in the film. However, as we reported last week, HitFix is saying Momoa IS in Batman vs Superman playing Aquaman. However, Nikki Finke made it sound like Aquaman was going to first appear in Justice League not BVSDOJ. Someone is lying and/or got faulty information.

Either Momoa is playing Aquaman, only not in BVSDOJ, which means Momoa wasn’t technically lying, Finke was speaking the truth, and HitFix was wrong on that part, or Momoa is playing Aquaman in BVSDOJwhich means Momoa was lying, HitFix was dead on, and Finke was at least partially wrong (and calls this entire list into question). Or Momoa isn’t playing Aquaman, but the character is in BVSDOJwhich makes Momoa right, HitFix partially right, and Finke wrong. Or Momoa isn’t playing Aquaman and Aquaman isn’t in BVSDOJ, which makes Momoa right, HitFix wrong, and Finke right. There’s probably more variations, but I have a headache and need to move on.

I hope that Momoa isn’t playing Aquaman, because I have a better role for him.

 

shazam

 Shazam!

Release Date: July 2016

Who Is He? He’s the superhero formerly known as Captain Marvel (still called that in-story, but DC lost the trademark to the name to Marvel), a.k.a. Billy Batson, a young orphan who is given the powers of the gods by a wizard in a subway station. At one point, he was the most popular, best selling character in comics.

Previous TV and Movie Experiences: The character had a successful movie serial in the 1940’s, which I talked about here, and live-action and animated Saturday Morning TV shows in the 1970’s.

What We Know:  The film has been in active development from the early 2000’s, but it really picked up in 2007 when screenwriter John August joined director Peter Segal on the project. However, the project was marked down as dead at least twice, once by August in 2009 and again by Segal as recently as December of last year. I guess they were wrong. Dwayne Johnston was rumored to be in talks for a role in the film.

What We Speculate: Okay, since it is coming two months after BVSDOJ, a film that is already cast and filming, if this film is really going to happen, we should hear about who is in the cast and crew at SDCC. Heck, we should have heard about it already. We’ve heard rumblings about July 2016’s Independence Day 2 and King Arthur, and if Marvel’s July 8, 2016 film is Doctor Strange, it already has a director. Some studios have announced their slates into 2018, which makes this announcement even more of a surprise.

Speaking of Marvel films, they have that as-yet-unnamed film on July 8, 2016. Could Warners be planning another move like they did with BVSDOJ and schedule Shazam! on July 8th? Would they really do that twice, go head to head with Marvel again?

Another thing to speculate upon is tone. August said back in 2009 that Warners was looking for a darker, more adult version of Shazam! than Captain Marvel, a family-friendly character for most of his comic book life, calls for. This is part of DC’s horrible “Dark Knight Disease,” where they think every comic book character would do gangbuster business if they were as grim and gritty as Batman. However, in recent DC Comics issues, the character has taken on a grittier tone and feel. The change in tone was brought on by DC Comics executive/writer Geoff Johns, who took over the screenplay writing duties from August back in 2008, so it has an air of being a calculated battle plan.

Momoa ShazamSpeaking of Jason Momoa, even though everyone says that he is a lock for Aquaman, I think he’d be a great choice for Captain Marvel. Look at that picture to the left. Do you see the same resemblance I do?  He has said that he was not playing Aquaman and that he is not in BVSDOJ, but he never said he wasn’t playing a DC character. And having him locked up to play Captain Marvel makes the rumor a little bit easier to swallow as it would make the project seem a little less of a surprise and more of a production that was put under a tight veil of secrecy.

Another thing that lends itself to this rumor being accurate was a tweet Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson sent last year that got a lot of people’s attention:

Since Shazam! was considered dead, people thought of what other DC characters he could play. Lobo and the Green Lantern named John Stewart started being thrown around. The buzz lasted all the way to March and CinemaCon, where Johnston addressed the rumors with reporters. He made it seem like he was already signed on and while he did not mention the character, he did give three attributes that drew him to it:

Here are three qualities. The first quality we were looking for was that he had to be extremely complex and have a lot going on. What that does for me as an actor and the studio is it gives us space that we can explore; his complexities. The other quality was that he had to — the character we were looking for had to be well-known but never brought to life. Then what that does again as an actor, it gives me a little bit of space, and we talked about personality. It just gives me a chance to put an imprint into his personality, with the set of tools that I could bring to the table and put a very unique twist on his personality, but still pay homage to who he is. The third thing — and most important — is he had to be a badass motherf***er, okay, and on a Superman level of power, where [he] could throw down. In those three qualities, I’m happy we’ve found that character. Right now, we’re out to a lot of writers.

This, added to the statement he made earlier in the interview where he said there have been ongoing discussions, points to the fact that the Black Adam negotiations he was making five years ago never really ended. Black Adam in the comics is complex, as he straddles the line between justified villainy or outright tyranny. Black Adam might not be all that well known to the general public, but Captain Marvel fans know him quite well, and he has never been portrayed in live-action. And on a power level, Black Adam has the same powers as Captain Marvel, who has been established in the comics as being on Superman’s power level.

Just something to think about.

neil-gaiman-sandmanSandman

Release Date: X-Mas 2016

Who Is He? While DC has had many characters who operated under the “Sandman” moniker, this film version will be based on the Neil Gaiman version of the character. This version is Morpheus, king of Dreams who rules over the land where all our dreams and nightmares call home. The books are extremely popular and its trade paperback collections have been continuously in print since the character debuted in 1988.

Previous TV and Movie Experiences: None.

What We Know: This film has also been in development a long time, since at least the 1990s. The various incarnations ranged from the good (Roger Avary, Ted Ellioy, Terry Russo and Neil Gaiman worked on a faithful adaptation when the movie started development) to the ugly (an action heavy version that resembled the source material as much as I resemble Katy Perry was in the running around 1998).

This version has Joseph Gordon-Levitt on board as at very least producer, joining David Goyer and Gaiman in the role. No word if JGL will also be directing and/or starring as well, but many think that is a strong possibility.

What We Speculate: While in the comics Sandman had a brief crossover with members of the DC Comics superhero community, the character mostly stood alone in his own book. If rumors or stories of other DC characters appearing in Sandman start popping up, be afraid. Be very afraid. Having this particular character be part of the shared universe Warners is trying to create is a mistake.

However, Warners seems to have Harry Potter-esque expectations from this film, and having Gaiman on board ensures that his vision will be coming through. The one thing I wonder about is how the comic book will be translated to the screen. The book as it stands would probably garner an R-Rating, but studios would most likely prefer a PG-13 at least. That change might be deadly to the adaptation.

justice-league-tabledJustice League

Release Date: May 2017

Who Are They?: They DC Comics’ biggest heroes–Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and the rest–joined together to fight crime.

Previous TV and Movie Experiences: The team, or some version of them, has appeared in numerous cartoons over the years, and has had a failed pilot attempt in 1997.

What We Know: While Warners’ mad dash towards getting a Justice League movie made seems like a desperate ploy to copy Marvel and their success with The Avengers, we must remember that the situation was almost reversed. A Justice League film came very close to being made in 2007. It was fully cast (Armie Hammer was to play Batman, Megan Gale as Wonder Woman, DJ Corona as Superman), George Miller was tapped to direct,  and pre-production had begun on the project. However, the studio thought that the script needed a bit of work. Unfortunately, this realization came just as the Writer’s Guild went on strike and the script work was unable to be done. The project was put on hiatus due to this reason, which necessitated the cast to be released from their contracts. A move of the production from Australia to Canada to save on costs made George Miller leave the film. And, just like that, the film went from being almost made to being knee-deep in development hell.

If it was actually completed, it most likely would have been released in 2008,the year the Marvel Cinematic Universe began with Iron Man. What effect would the success or failure of Justice League: Mortal have had on the Marvel’s film slate? Would Marvel’s plans change? Would it cost them viewers? Would it add more? Would Armie Hammer become an international movie star? Who knows? But it’s fun to play what if.

Anyway, we are sure that the League would consist of Henry Cavill’s Superman, Ben Affleck’s Batman, Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman, Ray Fisher’s Cyborg. It’s safe to say that Aquaman will be in it, played by Jason Momoa or someone else. It will be directed Zack Snyder and David Goyer will have a hand in it also.

And, once again, this DC movie is going to be released in a month previously staked out by Marvel. This is becoming something of a trend. While it does show confidence by Warners, I don’t think that confidence is justified quite as of yet. They’d be better suited to giving their films a bit of a cushion from Marvel’s.

What We Speculate: That line-up resembles the Justice League line-up in the recent “New52″ comic  book relaunch, which means we could expect Green Lantern and Flash to be part of the team as well. Shazam and Lex Luthor have recently joined the comic book team, and if the comic book/film symmetry holds, they might be on the team, but I’m leaning towards “not likely.” Could there be other members? Perhaps, because almost every DC hero was in the team at one point or another, but for a film, keeping the number of active members low is an imperative.

Darkseid has been mentioned as a villain in past script attempts for the film, and he is of such a stature and threat level that it is safe to assume that he’ll be the villain here.

wonder-woman-closeupWonder Woman

Release Date: July 2017

Who Is She?: Well, just the most famous, most iconic female comic-book superhero in the world!

Previous TV and Movie Experiences: Lynda Carter will always be Wonder Woman due to her portrayal of the Amazon in the CBS TV Series from the 1970s. The character has also appeared in numerous animated TV shows and DVDs over the years, and has at least two failed attempts at bringing her to TV in the last ten years.

What We Know: Finally, finally, Wonder Woman is getting a movie. We spoke about the difficulties in bringing the character to the screen here. A lot of those difficulties still need to be overcome, but at the very least there is a Wonder Woman film rumored to be part of Warners’ future, and that’s a good thing.

And this is the best time for a female action hero with an epic back story to hit the screen. This film will reach theaters just months after the Divergent series ends, and that series started very strong. Granted, Wonder Woman comes from comics and not books, and her story is far more convoluted than any of the female-friendly novels that have been successfully adapted. But if you are going to make a Wonder Woman film, you want to make it now.

Obviously, Gal Gadot will be playing Wonder Woman, for perhaps the last time.

What We Speculate: Why? Because Gadot has signed on for only three films. After BVSDOJ and Justice League, that makes Wonder Woman the last of her contract. To me, this has the faint odor of at least Warners’ hedging their bets, at most not really having faith in the character (or Gadot’s portrayal of it) being successful. If Wonder Woman fails, it will be really easy for Warners to walk away from it.

Zack Snyder has two chances to make ready and willing audiences care about Gadot’s Wonder Woman. If he can, and the audience that made Twilight, The Hunger Games, Divergent and even The Fault In Our Stars popular respond in droves to the Amazing Amazon, Wonder Woman should be a hit. And if it is, it might mean a pretty big payday for Gadot for any future films.

greenlanternflashFlash and Green Lantern

Release Date: X-Mas 2017

Who Are They?: The Flash is a man who received super speed after being bathed in lightning-charged chemicals. Green Lantern is an Earthing who was given a green ring by powerful aliens, a ring that creates anything he wills it to in order to protect the universe.

Previous TV and Film Appearances: The Flash has appeared on TV in a short-lived, 1990 TV series, and will be appearing in another one this fall, which could conceivably still be airing when this movie his theaters. Green Lantern was the focus of a disappointing 2011 film, probably the main reason why he’s sharing the bill this time.

What We Know: While having two diametrically different heroes share a film might puzzle the non-comic literate, this film could be an ultimate example of fan service.

gl and flash comicsThe two characters have a long and storied history together in the comics. The characters have crossed over numerous of times, so much that a friendship between the two characters was written into the characters’ continuity. And while there have been many different people who were the Flash and Green Lantern over the years, the connection between the characters continued no matter who was wearing the mask. And this was a great little aspect of both characters. Long time fans of the characters should be pleased by this cinematic pairing.

Of course, a solo Flash film has been in development for a decade, and as late as last year, the plans were for the character to get a film of his own. And even after the dust settled and the less-than-stellar grosses of Green Lantern hit, Warners was still saying that a sequel was forthcoming. The fact that those plans for solo films were left behind and we now have a joint effort just goes to show you Warners’ Etch-A-Sketch approach to planning their DC Comics films. Marvel has a plan all the way to 2028. Even if these rumored films get officially announced, there’s no guarantee they will really be made.

What We Speculate: The pairing of the characters on the big screen does raise a lot of issues & questions. If The Flash series is still running, and four seasons does not seem that hard to believe, does this mean that TV Flash Grant Gustin will reprise the role on the big screen? Having him share the cinematic load with another hero would be a good way to introduce him to world of film and keep the TV series going. That is if Warners doesn’t keep its TV and Film arms separate and the film Flash will be a different character from the one in the TV show..

Of course, as Finke proposed, this might be the end of Ryan Reynolds’ run as Green Lantern. Even though his career is in a rough patch, it doesn’t seem logical for him to go from headlining a film to becoming a partner in his next major appearance. If this is the case, will this be a way for DC/Warners to reboot the character? Or will they just recast a cheaper actor in the role, but keep the back story from the 2011 intact?

And will this be an ipso facto sequel to Justice League? It seems natural that the two characters will make an appearance there. If that’s so, does this lean towards Gustin and Reynolds reprising their roles, as their inclusion takes the onus of including an origin for them in the already crowded Justice League film? Or will they introduce new versions of the duo, making Justice League even more convoluted than it needs to be?

Man, my head hurts.

man-of-steel-Man of Steel 2

Release Date: May 2018

Who Is It? The same guy who was the focus of Man of Steel.

Previous TV and Film Appearances: Well, Man of Steel. And there were a few others before that.

What We Know: That it will take five years to get a sequel to Man of Steel. Depending how many more times Superman and his supporting cast appear between now and then, Henry Cavill should still be behind the “S,” and should be joined by Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne, et al.

What We Speculate: Well, since the film is so far away, all we could do is speculate. Will it follow the first series of films and make Lex Luthor the villain all the way through? Or we get to finally see other classic Superman bad guys like Braniac, Metallo or Mr. Mxyzptlk? Or will Warners go back to the well and give us the long threatened “Death of Superman” film that is about 20 years stale and really wouldn’t fit in with this incarnation of the character? I believe we’re at least two years away from getting any sort of news or hints about this, so let’s sit back and relax.

However, if things go according to plan and Marvel keeps up with the schedule they have been, The Avengers 3 will be released in May 2018. And The Amazing Spider-Man 4 is also due to hit then as well, which might be sans Andrew Garfield and Marc Webb. I predict a lot of bandwidth will be devoted to talking about this month’s comic book films.

In Closing…

About halfway through this, I came to the depressing realization that I might be writing a lot about a slate of films that might never come to pass. After all, this list has not yet been officially confirmed and is just a rumor (unless you think Kevin Smith is good confirmation). And there are warning signs that this list might not be legit (No Batman film? Could Shazam! go through the development needed to come out in 2016 and yet have no rumors come out about it until now?). But if this list is correct, then we are heading into an exciting time in the comic book film genre. If this slate is successful, it could make the comic book film an eternal genre in film. If it isn’t, it could start the end of the comic book film, a doom that many cinephiles have been hoping for. Thankfully, we’ll have answers about how accurate Nikki Finke was in about a month at San Diego Comic Con. Check back here then, and we’ll see how right our wrong thing things I mentioned today are.

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Kevins Smith Confirms Rumored Warner Brothers Comic Book Movie Slate

Posted on 16 June 2014 by Rich Drees

KevinSmith

The big news last week for comic book movie fans was the report of a possible slate of films that would see Warner Brothers putting out seven adaptations of DC Comics properties over a span of two years. It is a slate that will not only see the currently in-production Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice and the expected Justice League film but solo films for Shazam and Wonder Woman, a team-up film for the Flash and Green Lantern as well as an adaptation of DC Comics popular Sandman graphic novel series.

The story originated with Nikki Finke, newly returning to the internet after her ouster last year from the site she founded, Deadline. The news sparked much debate online as to the veracity of her reporting and sources, but now another someone else is coming forward to corroborate her story.

Kevin Smith, who has a pretty good line into Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice via his good friend and that film’s Batman Ben Affleck, has gone on the record stating that he had heard the same lineup of films but had been unable to say anything about them at the time. He made the admission on the latest episode of his Hollywood Babble On podcast.

Yeah, that’s what I heard, that’s what I was told. This is cool… This is a list that would make Grumpy Cat smile. This is a list that is perfect.

Smith has already spilled some details about the Batsuit his friend Affleck is wearing in the movie and that proved to be fairly spot on. That Smith has talked to Affleck or others over at Warners about what their future plans are seems plausible to me as Smith is a known DC Comics fan, who has even written some stories for various characters of theirs. Plus, Smith himself took a crack at writing one of the ultimately unused drafts of a Superman film back in the 1990s.

It is expected that Warners will be making their film slate announcement next month at San Diego Comic Con.

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Jason Momoa Is Aquaman In Snyder’s BATMAN V SUPERMAN

Posted on 14 June 2014 by Rich Drees

Aquaman

The rumor has been out there for months, but while we still don’t have an official confirmation, HitFix is reporting from their sources that Jason Momoa is indeed cast as Aquaman in Zach Snyder’s currently in-production Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice.

According to the site’s sources “Zack Snyder has already finalized his designs for the character so shooting can take place soon.”

So how does the aquatic superhero fit into the sequel? Well, details about the planned storyline have been scarce, though it has been hinted that it will concentrate on the reactions of various people to the destruction wrought by the rampaging Kryptonians in last summer’s Man Of Steel and it turns out that as King of the underwater nation of Atlantis, Aquaman has a few things to say.

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One of the things that has driven me crazy since the release of “Man Of Steel” is when people say that the last act of the film is a problem since there’s no consequences for Superman after all of the destruction that results from his battle with Zod. I felt like it was pretty clear walking out of the theater that the next film would have to be all about consequences. I suspected that Lex Luthor would use the destruction as a way of making Superman look like a monster, and it sounds like that is indeed one of the major ideas that they’re playing with in “Dawn Of Justice.”

Someone else who’s not particularly happy about what happened in that film is Aquaman. I’m not sure if that’s the actual name they’ll use or not, but what we’re hearing is that he is not pleased about the World Engine and what it did to the Indian Ocean. He will not have a major role in the film, but he will make an appearance, and it definitely sets him up to return once Snyder gets to “Justice League.”

I know that there is going to be a portion of fandom not thrilled with the idea of yet another superhero making their way into this film. Outside of its titular leads (being played by Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck), we also have Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher) showing up for the proceedings. We’ll see how Snyder manages this increasingly complicated juggling act.

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Rumor: Warners Preparing Crazy Ambitious Film Slate To Announce At San Diego

Posted on 12 June 2014 by Rich Drees

JusticeLeague1

For those who think that there is some sort of competition between Marvel Studios and Warner Brothers in getting their respective iconic superhero properties to the big screen, Wraners, with their stable of superheroes published by DC Comics, has been placing a very distant second to Marvel’s success. But if the rumor that Nikki Finke is reporting, that could be changing very soon.

According to the showbiz gossip maven, Warners is prepping a very aggressive slate of films to begin rolling out after the already announced Batman V Superman‘s release in May 2016. Specifically –

May 2016 – Batman v Superman
July 2016 – Shazam
Xmas 2016 – Sandman
May 2017 – Justice League
July 2017 – Wonder Woman
Xmas 2017 – Flash and Green Lantern team-up
May 2018 – Man Of Steel 2

Finke was ousted from Deadline, which she had initially founded, last year, and this is the first story on her brand new, eponymously-named site. She certainly knows how to make an entrance.

It should be noted that Finke is cautioning that somethings are still in flux, but this is the shape of things right now at Warners. Finke states that the final, solidified schedule will be announced next month at San Diego Comic Con. Some of the possible projects that were considered but didn’t make this initial cut include a Suicide Squad and a Metal Men film. There is also no word as to whether director Guillermo Del Toro’s talked about Justice League Dark is still under consideration, but we can take consolation in the fact that any Green Lantern film will not star Ryan Reynolds.

But if this schedule holds to what we are seeing here, the summer of 2016 is shaping up to be the biggest superhero film summer of all time. It would open on May 6 with Captain America 3 going head-to-head at the box office with Batman V Superman. Fox’s X-Men: Apocalypse would follow three weeks later on May 27. Another two weeks and we get Amazing Spider-Man 3 on June 10. July 8 will see an as-yet-announced Marvel Studios film hitting screens with Warner’s Shazam also landing in multiplexes that month. That’s six comic book adaptations within a potential 12-week span.

Of course, these films will follow interconnect, much in the same way Marvel’s Cinematic Universe does.

According to my source, “Like Marvel’s The Avengers, there will be cameos of superheroes for future installments. The cameos will include the already known Cyborg and Flash. Green Lantern [not played by Ryan Reynolds, thank god] may be introduced. And Aquaman will be seen in the Justice League movie. Problem is, Warner Bros Pictures was still negotiating with the actors for those cameos and future roles, meaning major contracts for multiple JL/character films to follow. The studio didn’t want to move forward until they had more of this secure so they held off starting production for a few months. Seemingly simple reason, but the implications are pretty darn huge.”

We’ve known for months that Warners has been gearing up to announce a slate of films, but I have to admit that I am surprised by the aggressiveness of this plan. Surprised, but thrilled that Warners is finally showing a commitment to bringing a number of their superheroes to the big screen. And I dare say that a Shazam/Captain Marvel film or a Flash/Green Lantern team-up film sound to be riskier propositions than the studio seemed prepared to roll the dice on before now.

Needless to say that all eyes will be on the San Diego Coimc Con next month when Warner Brothers holds their panel.

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Smith: BATMAN V. SUPERMAN: THE DAWN OF JUSTICE Part Of A Series Of Six JUSTICE LEAGUE Films

Posted on 27 May 2014 by William Gatevackes

KevinSmithSpoilersKevin Smith has two very trademark attributes. He is friends with Ben Affleck and he is willing to speak on just about anything at any time. These combine give anything the director says a little bit more weight and believability, especially if it involves Warner’s DC Comic film slate.

Well, the director dropped some fairly big information on us in his latest Hollywood Babble-On podcast, where he spoke about Batman V. Superman. The train of thought traveled to Warners’ plans with their superhero film universe. This is what Smith had to say:

But look, they’re obviously beginning something, and there’s a stretch of these flicks. And so this is the beginning of the Justice League, as we all suspected as they were announcing that cast. We were like, ‘This is the beginning of a Justice League movie.’ From what I understand now, it’s no longer like, ‘This is Superman 2.’ They’re not doing these things. They’re doing like, ‘Here’s Man of Steel. Here’s Batman/Superman: Dawn of Justice.’ The next one is not like a sequel to one of the characters. They’re just going to keep building their universe for about five or six movies. But all of them…it’s supposed to tell one massive story, which is all Justice League oriented.

In part, as he mentions, this is just confirming what we already know.  Like he said, there are too many actors being cast as DC heroes for this not to be the start of the Justice League. But, if I understand him correctly, the future doesn’t entail standalone films that lead up to a big blockbuster, like what Marvel did with The Avengers, but rather a sweeping arc where all the films are simply one piece of a larger story. That would mean that any hopes of the Flash or Wonder Woman getting a film of their own might be lost.

Of course, this is coming from the friend of one of the stars of the franchise. I’ll believe it when either the studio of someone attached to the films repeats it.

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BATMAN V. SUPERMAN Gets A Subtitle, Logo, As David Goyer Insults She-Hulk, Geeks

Posted on 21 May 2014 by William Gatevackes

batman-vs-superman-dawn-of-justice-logoJust in time for production to begin in earnest, the sequel to The Man of Steel gets an official title and logo. No, we can no longer call it Batman vs. Superman, we must now call it Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.

The added subtitle confirms pretty much what we already knew–that this film will act as the set up for the forthcoming Justice League film. I mean, why would they include a subtitle as clunky as “Dawn of Justice” is that weren’t the case?

The films also has an official logo, which doesn’t look all that much different that the fan made logos that were bandied about when the project was first announced.

David Goyer imageThe announcement comes at the same time that The Mary Sue reports on an appearance made by BVSDOJ writer David S. Goyer made on screenwriters John August and Craig Mazin’s podcast, Scriptnotes. The segment was dedicated to superhero blockbusters, and after the self-promotion was over, the guests were charged with revamping existing comic book character to the big screen. One was the She-Hulk, which led to this rather unctuous exchange between Mazin (writer of such high-brow fare as Scary Movie 3 & 4 and the two Hangover films that sucked)

Craig Mazin: The real name for She-Hulk was Slut-Hulk. That was the whole point. Let’s just make this green chick with enormous boobs. And she’s Hulk strong but not Hulk massive, right? … She’s real lean, stringy…

David S. Goyer: She’s still pretty chunky. She was like Chyna from the WWE.

Mazin: The whole point of She-Hulk was just to appeal sexistly to ten-year-old boys. Worked on me.

Goyer: I have a theory about She-Hulk. Which was created by a man, right? And at the time in particular I think 95% of comic book readers were men and certainly almost all of the comic book writers were men. So the Hulk was this classic male power fantasy. It’s like, most of the people reading comic books were these people like me who were just these little kids getting the shit kicked out of them every day… And so then they created She-Huk, right? Who was still smart… I think She-Hulk is the chick that you could fuck if you were Hulk, you know what I’m saying? … She-Hulk was the extension of the male power fantasy. So it’s like if I’m going to be this geek who becomes the Hulk then let’s create a giant green porn star that only the Hulk could fuck.

Technically, She-Hulk was created to protect a copyright, but, you know, run with the Hulk concubine theory, David. Also, if this thought process wasn’t creepy enough, it is clearly established in the character’s creation that the She-Hulk was the Hulk’s first cousin. I guess incest is also part of that male power fantasy Goyer was talking about.

Goyer wasn’t done. He went onto discuss the Martian Manhunter, where he managed to work in an insult at his fan base as well as another shot at She-Hulk. Here are some choice quotes:

“How many people in the audience have heard of Martian Manhunter? How many people that raised their hands have ever been laid?”

” He can’t be fucking called the Martian Manhunter because that’s goofy. He can be called Manhunter… The whole deal with Martian Manhunter is he’s an alien living amongst us… So he comes down to Earth and decides, unlike Superman who already exists in the world now, that he’s just going to be a homicide detective… So instead of using super-powers and mind-reading and like, oh, I could figure out if the President’s lying or whatever, he just decides to disguise himself as a human homicide detective. Dare to dream!””

“I would set it up like The Day After Tomorrow. We discover one of those Earth-like planets… So maybe like… we get the DNA code from that planet and then grow him in a petri dish here… He’s like in Area 51 or something and we’re just basically… doing biopsies on him. Then he gets out and he’s really angry and he fucks She-Hulk.”

Ah, that old chestnut, the “If-you-know-this-character-you-obviously-haven’t-had-sex” gag. Never gets less lame.

Now, if we were to be generous to Goyer, we could say that he was only playing to the room, and that his jab at geek’s sexless nature was a “laughing with” scenario not a “laughing at.” But even taking that into consideration, Goyer’s remarks are troubling.

How so? Well, as we all know by now, Goyer is introducing Wonder Woman into the DC Cinematic Universe with this film. Wonder Woman is the most recognizable female character in comic books, a feminist icon, and a role model to women young and old. If Goyer is willing to discount 30 years of stories that portray She-Hulk as a competent woman, a skilled attorney, a loyal friend and person with a great sense of humor and simply view her as a male power fantasy, how is he going to view Wonder Woman. If he is so off on the characterization of the She-Hulk and Martian Manhunter, how can we hope that he’ll figure out the best way to bring Wonder Woman to the screen.

We can hope because Argo‘s Chris Terrio, originally brought in to do a script polish, has been bumped up full writer who adapted Goyer’s screenplay. Hopefully, Terrio could bring in a better feel for the characters that Goyer, a man who actually wrote for DC Comics, appears to be able to.

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Matt Damon As AQUAMAN: The Rumor That Will Not Die

Posted on 28 April 2014 by William Gatevackes

matt-damon-ben-affleck-01So did you hear the one about Matt Damon being pursued for the role of Aquaman in Batman vs Superman? Well, Matt Goldberg over at Collider didn’t, so he makes a big deal about it now.

This latest round started when Jeff Sneider over at The Wrap made a casual reference to the rumor that Matt Damon was being sought to play the King of Atlantis in Warners’ upcoming slate of DC’s films during his story on Zack Snyder being named director of the Justice League film. Goldberg obviously thinks Sneider buried the lead with this information, so he takes that small factoid and makes a full post out of it. Goldberg even marvels at the fact that such a rumor was able to be “kept under wraps” for such a long time.

Thing is, it hasn’t been under wraps. It has been out in the open for almost nine months. Who do I know this? Because I mentioned the rumor in an article here back on August 26, 2013. It was tacked on the “Bryan Cranston as Lex Luthor” rumor Cosmic Book News put forth three days before that. And we all know how that worked out, now don’t we?

But regardless, this rumor is old news. But since Goldberg didn’t even do a cursory Google search, he thought he had the scoop of the century. The sad thing is, page is probably getting a lot hits, because people who actually did hear the rumor back in August thought there might have been some movement in that area since there was a news on it. Imagine their disappointment when they actually read Goldberg’s article.

In the interest of not getting fans’ hopes up, let me say this. I’m more likely to play Aquaman than Matt Damon, and I don’t even know how to swim. It might not seem like it, but Damon is a major movie star. His films have grossed in total over $3 billion worldwide. He has one Oscar to his name, and two more nominations on top of that. Now, look at the other confirmed castings we have: a relative unknown as Wonder Woman, and a complete unknown as Cyborg. What does this tell you? That for everyone outside of Batman, Warners is buying low when it comes to casting. Granted, they are developing an Aquaman film, and Damon would add respect to what is considered a “lame” character in many circles, but it seems unlikely that Warners would be willing to pay the 43-year-old actor his $10 to $20 million salary when they can get younger for much cheaper and get a longer return on their investment.

And from Damon’s perspective, what’s in it for him besides working with his buddy Ben Affleck? He’s not going to get a big payday for his work, or any award nominations either. He doesn’t really need a franchise under his belt, and if he did, he still has the Bourne movies for that purpose. All signing up for Aquaman gives Damon is a big time drain on his schedule that he could have spent doing films he had more of a personal interest in.

So, let’s put this rumor back to bed, where it was before Goldberg woke it up.

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Zack Snyder Will Be Directing JUSTICE LEAGUE

Posted on 27 April 2014 by Rich Drees

ZackSnyder

It may seem as if the upcoming Man Of Steel sequel which everyone is calling Batman Vs Superman was going to basically be a Justice League movie given that it is looking as if many of the superheroes who make up that group were going to be in the film. But Warners definitely has a full-fledged Justice League film in the works and now we know who will be directing it. Unsurprisingly, it will be Man Of Steel and Batman Vs Superman director Zack Snyder.

The news comes to us from the Wall Street Journal who quote Warner Brothers president of worldwide production Greg Silverman as saying that a screenplay for the film is already being developed and that Batman Vs Superman will definitely lead into Justice League. No date has been set for the Justice League film, but given that Batman Vs Superman won’t be in theaters until 2016, Justice League will probably not be released before 2018.

Presumably, Justice League will see the three superpowered stars of Batman Vs Superman – Henry Cavill as Superman, Ben Affleck as Batman and Gail Gadot as Wonder Woman – with a number of other costumed heroes to fight some world-threatening menace. Just this past week it was reported that Ray Fisher had joined the film in the smaller role of Cyborg, another superhero who in some iterations of the Justice League story is a founding member. It was also rumored this week that Jason Momoa had signed onto the role in an unspecified role.

Silverman also confirmed that the studio was in the process of developing a number of other films based on corporate sibling DC Comics properties including Metal Men, Shazam, 100 Bullets and Fables. Interestingly, he stated that the studio was not actively developing a Wonder Woman film even though Gadot had been signed to a three-film deal which everyone assumed would cover Batman Vs Superman, Justice League and a solo Wonder Woman film.

That is not to say that executives at the studio aren’t open to the idea of a solo Wonder Woman film. Sue Kroll, president of worldwide marketing is quoted by the Journal saying –

With the right script, that could be viable. The world is ready for her.

It sounds to me as if the studio is waiting to see if Gadot’s portrayal of the character catches on with audiences.

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