On Wednesday, Warner Bros. and DC Comics dropped some absolutely monumental movie news: Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Shazam, Cyborg, and Green Lantern are all getting movies in the next six years. Here are the release dates (the years should stay solid, but the dates may change):
- Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice - 03/25/16
- Suicide Squad - 08/05/16
- Wonder Woman - 06/23/17 (starring Gal Gadot)
- Justice League Part One - 11/17/17
- The Flash - 03/23/18 (starring Ezra Miler)
- Aquaman - 07/27/18 (starring Jason Momoa)
- Shazam - 04/05/19
- Justice League Part Two - 06/14/19
- Cyborg - 04/03/20 (starring Ray Fisher)
- Green Lantern - 06/19/20
The news is aggressive, exciting, and brash — it's basically the cinematic equivalent of a wrestler leaping off the top rope. Here's are some brief reasons why comic fans are losing their minds today.
Wonder Woman — someone finally pulled the trigger
In the comic book industry, a persistent question over the past few years has been when a solo, iconic female superhero movie would be produced. The comic book industry, particularly Marvel, has been putting female heroes front and center with solo books. And at the movies, films with female leads, most recently The Hunger Games franchise, Frozen, and Maleficent have become solid box office hits.
A Wonder Woman movie answers that question and finally gives fans a date to look forward to. DC is also beating Marvel — traditionally seen as the more progressive, and female-friendly company when it comes to the Big Two — to the punch. There had long been speculation that Marvel might create a Captain Marvel movie, but that hasn't come to fruition just yet. And though Sony announced that it had plans for a female superhero-led movie in August, no character has been named.
Critics and amateur sexists will point out that there have been some female-led box office clunkers (see: Catwoman and Elektra) in the past (sometimes ignoring the trove of terrible male-led superhero movies). And questions of quality, casting, and filmmaking are going to be valid going forward. But for now, fans — like DC's Gail Simone, who wrote Wonder Woman — are happy that a Wonder Woman movie is being made.
Tomorrow. I will be skeptical tomorrow. Today, WONDER WOMAN MOVIE.— GHOUL SLIME-MOAN (@GailSimone) October 15, 2014
The Suicide Squad is DC's answer to Guardians of the Galaxy
A lot of those names heading up the list of upcoming movies are familiar. The most obscure movie on the list is the Suicide Squad.
For the unfamiliar (and this might sound familiar), the Suicide Squad is a team of rag-tag villains and outcasts who were originally brought together by the U.S. government to perform dangerous and clandestine missions in exchange for shaving years off of their prison sentences. Is this just The A-Team with supervillains? Kind of, yes.
The comic, more or less, has become an antihero narrative not unlike the Guardians of the Galaxy. Rumors of an SS movie kept creeping up over the last year, but then things got quiet. Perhaps it's Marvel's success with a similar, semi-obscure group of misfit superheroes that gave DC the confidence to run with the movie.
There are many different versions of the team, but it's likely DC will go with one that involves Harley Quinn (pictured above), a complex, unstable villainess and fan favorite who spends most of her time playing sidekick to The Joker.
When you look at The Avengers movies, it's a random bunch of white men and one white woman who are saving the world. Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury and Cobie Smulders's Maria Hill, aren't technically part of the core team of Avengers. The Justice League movie, like The Avengers, sorely lacks female superheroes, but it'll also be the most diverse superhero cast on the big screen that we've seen in years.
DC has already cast Jason Momoa, a.k.a. Game of Thrones's Khal Drogo, as Aquaman, who is usually depicted as someone who looks more like Alexander Skarsgard or Alex Pettyfer. Cyborg, as he is depicted in the comics, is a black man and will be played by Ray Fisher. Dwayne Johnson, a.k.a. "The Rock," is playing the villain Black Adam in Shazam. And there's also opportunity for Warner Bros./DC to add another non-white character in the Green Lantern —there are many different versions of The Green Lantern, a popular version is a man named John Stewart who is black.
DC and Warner Bros. have come to play. Let the gossip and dream casting (Jesse Williams as Green Lantern, please!) commence.