The DC universe is upside down again. David Zaslav, CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery, has been monopolizing cinematographic news for a few days due to his drastic decisions to redirect the company’s strategy and, above all, reduce the debt that it carries from the WarnerMedia era. One of the hardest hit divisions has been DC. Zaslav decided to cancel the premiere of ‘Batgirl’ despite it already being shot, cancel plans to release superhero movies directly on streaming and announced a ten-year plan for the franchise following the example of its main competitors, Marvel Studios.
Warner Bros. had already tried a UCM cinematographic universe with Zack Snyder at the helm, but the ‘Justice League’ debacle ended that idea and in 2018 Walter Hamada entered to take charge of a new stage for the franchise. His main decision was to allow the films to not be so connected to each other or follow a unified style.. ‘Aquaman’ exceeded one billion dollars at the box office and seemed to indicate that DC was finally on the right track. Without a doubt, the criticism accompanied them more than in the Snyder era. But the box office did not finish accompanying at all, until ‘The Batman’ arrived, not connected with any other title in the DC universe.
Hamada’s strategy of giving more freedom had lights and shadows, but they were willing to keep trying, even with events like ‘Justice League’ without having followed an established plan. According to him hollywoodreporter, Walter Hamada wanted to try to make a movie based on ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’, a crossover that came to the comics in the 80s and that we already saw adapted in the television Arrowverse. We would have seen multiverses, epic battles of characters from different realities and all the potential that DC could give. But it is very likely that this idea, like many others of the old guard, will come to nothing because Hamada was about to leave the company of the anger he took with the cancellation of ‘Batgirl’, and has supposedly agreed to stay in front until ‘Black Adam’ opens next October.
The films in limbo and those that move on
It would not be the only project that remains hanging. Apparently, they also wanted to introduce the Secret Six at some point, a team of villains normally antagonistic to the Suicide Squad. The films of Supergirl, Green Lantern Corps, Static Shock and the black Superman that JJ Abrams was developing have also been left in limbo..
But it’s not all bad news. Apparently, Warner Bros. Discovery’s new board has kept plans for ‘Blue Beetle’ and ‘Black Canary’. The first film will introduce us to the first Latino superhero in the DC universe. It will star Xolo Maridueña (‘Cobra Kai’) and directed by Angel Manuel Sota. Susan Sarandon is part of the cast. Initially intended for HBO Max, the previous board already decided that they would finally launch it in theaters. ‘Black Canary’, which Warner has confirmed to TVLine which is still in development, marks the return of Jurnee Smollett to DC after ‘Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)’. The case of this film is more strange because at the moment it is still intended for HBO Max, and we already know that Zaslav does not plan to spend the money on direct-to-streaming movies. Will it also be promoted to theatrical release? We will also have to see how they fit into the new plans for the franchise that the studio has, if they want everything to be more connected than until now.