WB Shows Its Cards in a Post-Wonder Woman World
Last time we were together, we basked as Marvel Studio's opened their floodgates at this year's San Diego Comic-Con. Its time now to look at the other end of the table at Warner Bros./DC's presentation. This was not as extensive as the Marvel panel, seeing how DC shared the stage with other WB properties. All things considered, their costumed crime fighters still made an internet shaking display.
The DC portion of the event started off with a bang as actor Jason Momoa strolled out, trident in hand, to debut the first footage for Aquaman. The picture is still in production so there wasn't much to show off. That being said, what was showcased did a good job of setting the otherworldly presence of Atlantis and the general feel of the movie. The footage is said to show a fishing boat that is entangled by an overwhelming fleet of Atlantian ships. The footage then switches to a sequence of Arthur Curry himself bantering with an obscured opponent before charging into battle. From the initial casting of Momoa in the role, WB has made a concentrated effort to make Aquaman a serious contender in the eyes of the general public.
After the footage was with met positive reception, Momoa was promptly joined by his fellow Justice League co-stars. Before any serious League tidbits were dropped, Ben Affleck addressed rumors circulating the day before about his seemingly uncertain future as Batman. You can read his statement verbatim here. He seems very adamant about staying in the cowl as long as he can. The question is: does Warner Bros. truly feel the same? I personally hope he won't be leaving any time soon. (Quick side note: The Hollywood Reporter is simply reporting what they have heard. If you believe Affleck is not leaving anytime soon, do not shoot the messengers.)
Having all the pleasantries out of the way, it was time to drop their heavy hitter. The crowd in Hall H was treated to a 4 minute "sneak peek" of Justice League which was dropped online not long after. A rendition of Han Zimmer's Man of Steel theme was even used as the score given the trailer's focus on Superman's impact on our heroes. A few things were very prevalent in this trailer. One of the biggest choices was the heavy inclusion of Wonder Woman. It makes perfect sense considering that Gal Gadot and director Patty Jenkins have made her Warner's golden girl in the cinema scene. It would not be surprising if current reshoots added more of the character into the film. Another defining aspect seems to be the overall tone and visual style.
As we know, Zack Snyder stepped down after a severe personal tragedy and directing duties were handed over to Joss Whedon. Some time has passed since then, and one could argue that his aesthetic is bleeding through. From the style of humor to the lack of desaturated color, this feels very different from the majority of DCEU films we have gotten in the past. However, we cannot completely assume this is due to Snyder's absence. Last year's Comic-Con debuted Justice League footage which contained more levity as a response to criticism of Batman v Superman's darker tone. That being said, I'm sure some tweaking has and will be done to make the picture more closely model the structure of Wonder Woman. Whatever the process, all we should be worried about is getting an entertaining, well-made film on November 17.
Rounding out the panel, the screens which wrap around the walls of the convention center began to show the titles of DC's upcoming film slate. While many of these were already announced, one large change caught everyone's attention. The Flash movie logo was presented and changed into Flashpoint. For those of you that are only casually familiar with the Scarlet Speedster, the Flashpoint story in comics revolves around the repercussions of Flash going back in time to save his mother and ultimately changing the timeline. If this is true, then it would allow Warner Bros. to change their universe by filtering out anything that put the DCEU on the viewing public's bad side. It would also allow them to smoothly transition Ben Affleck out if the aforementioned rumors turn out to be true. Only time will tell what the cinematic interpretation of Geoff Johns' story will hold.
What do you guys think? Did you like the Justice League trailer? Has Momoa changed your mind on Aquaman, or have you never seen him as a joke? Do you think a Flashpoint movie is the right move this early in the DCEU? Answer all these question and more in the comments below, or don't. You can make your own decisions. Stay frosty!