There was a ton of promo and anticipation leading up to the release of DC Film’s Justice League. Since Patty Jenkins had created a fantastic Wonder Woman, many people hoped Zack Synder could deliver a well-crafted superhero flick with memorable heroes, storylines, and thrilling sequences. Despite Synder’s best efforts and with a little help from industry titan Joss Whedon, Justice League failed to deliver.
For whatever reason, whether it’s been the less-than-stellar CGI, strange casting choices, or uneven storytelling, DCEU continues to lag behind Marvel when it comes to bringing their timeless superheroes to the big screen. Now it looks like Warner Bros. is tired of waiting for them to get their act together. Here is the massive change the studio is making following the disappointment that was Justice League.
Some good news
Though Justice League was a box-office disappointment overall, Warner Bros. was thrilled about two aspects of the film: Ezra Miller’s Flash and Jason Momoa’s Aquaman. Miller was perfection as the lightning-quick superhero. Variety is reporting that Warner also thoroughly enjoyed Momoa’s stoic Arthur Curry, which works out well since the standalone Aquaman is due out Dec. 21, 2018.
Let’s just hope the film has an epic script and that Momoa is shirtless for the majority of it.
Next: Say goodbye to this controversial role.
Say goodbye to the Batffleck
People haven’t exactly embraced Ben Affleck in the role of Batman — after all, we were all around to remember Christian Bale and Michael Keaton take on the Caped Crusader. It looks like Warner Bros. will be asking Affleck to park his Batmobile fairly soon.
Though the Argo director is expected to reprise his role in Miller’s standalone Flash film, the Batman solo film will reportedly have a brand new Bruce Wayne. According to Variety, director Matt Reeves is on the hunt for some fresh unknown talent. We say yes to that.
Next: Everybody is ready for a new direction.
Through a new lens
Before he could finish Justice League, Synder had to step away to deal with a family tragedy. Now it looks like the DCEU is trying to keep him out of the director’s chair for good. Warner Bros. has a production deal with the Dawn of the Dead director. But after the critical disaster of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Time Warner is trying to figure out why Warner Bros. keeps bringing Synder back.
As of right now, Synder will be on board to produce Wonder Woman 2 and Aquaman, but he won’t be directing any future DC Films.
Next: The shake-up continues with this major change.
A massive shake-up
As a result of Justice League, Warner Bros. co-president Jon Berg is leaving his post. Berg currently heads the comic book’s film production division.
This is something that Jon approached me about six months ago, and he expressed his goal was to ultimately be a producer at the studio. I first met Jon when, as a producer, he brought Elf to New Line, which remains one of the best and most evergreen titles in the library. We’re thrilled that Jon is partnering with Roy [Lee] and anticipate their company being a valuable source of movies for Warner Bros. and New Line.
Berg will be moving on to produce movies with Lee, who produced the smash hits It and The Lego Movie.
Next: Is Warner Bros. looking into a new model?
Reigning in the DCEU
One of the reasons Marvel is successful is because Disney, which owns Marvel, gives the studio the freedom to act independently — which is why studios like Fox and Sony can produce films under Marvel’s banner. Warner Bros. may be looking into using that model.
It is rumored that Emmerich wants to pull DC under the studio’s arm rather than letting it remain a separate building on Warner Bros.’ lot.
Next: When this much money is spent on a film, you expect better results.
One of the primary reasons for this significant change has to do with money. Warner Bros.’ corporate leaders at Time Warner have been very annoyed with the DCEU’s box office performance.
With a bloated budget of $300 million, Justice League only managed to gross $570.3 million worldwide after being out for three weeks and ended its theatrical run as the lowest-grossing DCEU movie thus far. In contrast, Marvel’s 2012 flick The Avengers, which was made for $220 million, has grossed an astronomical $1.5 billion.
Luckily, Warner Bros. had It, Dunkirk, and Wonder Woman to fall back on last year.
Next: Fans still have these big movies to look forward to.
So far, Aquaman and Ezra Miller’s standalone Flash film are still expected to move forward. Warner Bros. is also moving forward with the Cold War-set Wonder Woman sequel, with Jenkins returning as director and Gal Gadot back as the Amazon warrior Diana Prince.
New Line has also greenlit a Shazam flick, which began filming in January, but other future projects have not yet been set in stone.
Follow Aramide on Twitter @midnightrami.
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