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.