The usually reliable Latino Review is reporting on some interesting new rumors surrounding Warner Brothers’ long-term plans for the expanded cinematic universe it is creating based on DC Comics’ stable of iconic superheroes.
The first is that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice star Ben Affleck will possibly both direct and star in The Batman, a reboot of the Dark Knight franchise. His Oscar-winning Argo scribe Chris Terrio (who also worked on the scripts for Dawn of Justice and the studio’s Justice League feature — the latter of which will be released in two parts with the first tentatively scheduled for a late 2017 release and the second for the summer of 2019) will write the script for a possible November 2018 theatrical release. This would put the most popular DC character in direct conflict with Marvel Studios’ eagerly awaited Captain Marvel, which will be their first female-headed blockbuster event.
The second and third rumors both revolve around the same film: last month we reported that actor Chris Pine was in talks for a supporting part in June 2017’s Wonder Woman (starring Gal Gadot in the title role), possibly that of her love interest Steve Trevor. Now it appears that rumor was just a smokescreen for the role Pine could be playing in DC’s onscreen universe: Hal Jordan, the Silver Age Green Lantern. Pine had been mooted to take over the role of the Lantern since the 2011 movie starring Ryan Reynolds opened to a disastrous critical and commercial reception.
If the third rumor is also true, he won’t be the only actor donning the power ring of a Lantern in the DC Cinematic Universe. Apparently Warner Bros. and DC not only want to reboot the celluloid incarnation of Hal Jordan, but they also want to introduce another Lantern into the growing fold. Right now that will most likely be the first black man to serve as one of the Green Lantern Corps, John Stewart. When George Miller was set to make his aborted Justice League movie back in 2007, actor and rap musician Common was heavily favored for the role of Stewart as the team’s Lantern.
The Latino Review report indicates that the roles of Jordan and Stewart have both been cast, but the studio is waiting until this year’s San Diego Comic-Con to introduce them as part of an assembly of the entire cinematic Justice League during their Hall H presentation. The current plan is to include both Lanterns in the League movie before handing off the rebooted solo movie to one of them (possibly Jordan) while the other is retained as either a back-up or sent off to battle extraterrestrial threats to the galaxy in another sector.
It is no longer confidential knowledge that the studio and its trailblazing comics company have had a difficult time transforming their line-up of classic costumed crime-fighters and cosmic warriors into an interconnected film franchise to rival Marvel Studios’ own ever-expanding universe of bankable big screen heroics. Putting multiple writers to work adapting the same property into a script worthy of a green light but in a competitive manner has only stalled what little progress they had made. Losing Michelle MacLaren as the director of Wonder Woman didn’t help either, although she was quickly replaced by Patty Jenkins.
A little over a year ago, it was revealed that Warners and DC had worked out a release schedule for its upcoming slate of superhero movies, which at the time included a sequel to 2013’s Man of Steel and a Flash/Green Lantern team-up feature. Four months later, they altered that timeline a bit to include next summer’s release of Suicide Squad, Aquaman, and Cyborg solo movies (to star Jason Momoa and Ray Fisher, respectively), and the Flash/Green Lantern flick was now split into two individual movies, with Ezra Miller snagging the role of the Flash.
There would also be a Shazam feature co-starring Dwayne Johnson as the possible adversary Black Adam that was originally scheduled for 2016 but is now being pushed back to a 2019 release, and the studio has yet to decide if it will be part of their larger cinematic universe or a standalone feature. The Flash and Aquaman movies would both release in 2018, with the Green Lantern reboot and Cyborg each set to debut in 2020.
Here’s the official DC Cinematic Universe release schedule (subject to change, as if it had a choice) thus far:
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – March 25, 2016
Suicide Squad – August 5, 2016
Wonder Woman – June 23, 2017
Justice League: Part One – November 17, 2017
The Flash – March 23, 2018
Aquaman – July 27, 2018
Shazam – April 5, 2019
Justice League: Part Two – June 14, 2019
Cyborg – April 3, 2020
If The Batman gets its November 2018 release as rumored, it will be the third DC movie we’ll see that year. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to take a nap because my brain is currently hanging upside down.
[Source: Latino Review]