Since 2008, Marvel Studios has built up their cinematic universe with some of the most popular movies being produced in Hollywood, but DC Comics and Warner Bros. are in the midst of creating something huge and competitive. The release of Zack Snyder's Man of Steel in 2013 kicked things off, and now we are slowly watching the construction of the DC Extended Universe.
But what are the titles that are going to help fans dive into this vast comic book world? Who are the filmmakers making the movies, and who will be starring? Well, we've organized all that information for you below, so read on to have your big questions answered!
In 2018, star Jason Momoa and director James Wan will take audiences to the depths of the ocean and see DC Comics' King of Atlantis at the center of his own solo film. Joining Momoa is The Get Down's Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as the villainous Black Manta, Patrick Wilson as the king's brother, Orm, and Amber Heard as Mera (following her DC Extended Universe debut in Justice League). One also can predict struggles for the throne and battles between those from sea and those from land. Oh, and plenty of big, epic battle scenes featuring lots and lots of water. It really just wouldn't be an Aquaman movie without it.
This project has a particular challenge ahead of it, if not just because its central character has been the butt of jokes for a few decades now -- most mocking his somewhat silly water-based powers. That being said, DC Comics has done a great deal to redeem the character since the big comic book relaunch The New 52, and now many fans see him as an underwater badass. The fact that one of the toughest and most terrifying Game of Thrones stars is playing Aquaman doesn't hurt either. Get the latest news and information about Aquaman HERE.
Warner Bros. and DC Comics have been trying to develop a Shazam film for years now, and after a whole lot of false starts it's finally happening. It was officially announced in July 2017 that Lights Out director David F. Sandberg was locked in to helm the superhero adventure film, and that it would be the first DC Extended Universe movie to go into production after Aquaman.
Said to be more comedic than other titles in the DC Extended Universe, the plot will center on a young boy named Billy Batson (Asher Angel) who, thanks to the teachings of an old wizard (Djimon Hounsou), can transform into an adult superhero (Zachary Levi) after saying the titular word. The first trailer debuted during San Diego Comic-Con 2018, and it definitely has a much different tone than every other film we've seen so far in this franchise. Get the latest news and information about Shazam HERE.
To the surprise of only the few who couldn't understand the potential of a female-driven superhero movie, Patty Jenkins' Wonder Woman was a monster hit when it was released in the summer of 2017, and as a result a sequel was quickly given the green light. Jenkins will be back at the helm, and the story will be taking the titular Amazonian hero to America - specifically during the year 1984 (if that wasn't obvious already from the title).
Not much is known about the plot of Wonder Woman 1984, but Patty Jenkins has noted that the year simultaneously featured both the best and worst of humanity on the global scale. Gal Gadot will be back in her classic armor for the adventure as Wonder Woman, while (surprisingly) Chris Pine will also be back as the formerly-dead Steve Trevor. Kristin Wiig will be playing one of the central villains of the film, the classic Wonder Woman antagonist Cheetah, and Pedro Pascal is rumored to be playing Maxwell Lord. Get the latest news and information about Wonder Woman 1984 HERE.
The DC Extended Universe has been developing a Birds of Prey feature for a couple of years now, but it was in September 2018 that the franchise surprised the world by making it their first film for 2020. And, not only has the project hired Cathy Yan to direct the movie as her blockbuster debut, but it's also started putting together a fantastic ensemble.
It's expected that Margot Robbie will be the big headliner of Birds Of Prey as Harley Quinn - her follow-up to Suicide Squad - but she will be surrounded by an awesome group of other actresses. We don't yet know who will be playing Batgirl in the film, but it has been confirmed who will be playing Huntress, Black Canary, and Renee Montoya - specifically Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, and Rosie Perez, respectively. Production will begin in the first half of 2019. Get the latest news and information about Birds of Prey HERE.
Although David Ayer's Suicide Squad was not acclaimed, the film was still successful enough to warrant a sequel. What's more, it looks like the DC Extended Universe will be dipping into the Marvel Studios talent pool to help get the film made. After being fired from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 by Disney, it now looks like James Gunn is going to be writing the script for Suicide Squad 2 - and possibly directing it. According to reports, he will be heading into the project with a fresh approach, but it's unclear exactly what "fresh" means, especially as far as connections to its predecessor. This is a project that seems to be coming together faster than most, so it wouldn't be too surprising to see this title bumped up to the first section before too long.
Batman is unquestionably one of the most beloved pop culture icons of all time -- so we know that it won't be long until Ben Affleck's version of the character gets a solo movie of his very own. Unfortunately, what's unclear is exactly when we will see that happen, as, while we know that a new film about the Caped Crusader is now in development, we have no idea when it will actually start production or arrive in front of audiences. While Ben Affleck was originally attached to direct based on a script he co-wrote with Geoff Johns, he stepped away from the director's chair, and now it's Matt Reeves who is steering the ship through development. Reeves is doing his own page one rewrite of the script, which has left fans wondering if there are still plans to include Joe Manganiello as Deathstroke, as was previously the case.
With the proper Justice League introduced into the DCEU, the franchise is soon looking to have audiences meet the team's more magical counterpart from the comics. Originally Justice League Dark was going to be directed by Guillermo Del Toro, and then it was going to be Doug Liman... but now the project exists without a director. The property focuses on a group of anti-heroes led by detective John Constantine who face off against supernatural and magical threats -- as opposed to the more scientific and extraterrestrial threats the Justice League battles. No plot details have been announced, and we don't know anything yet about casting.
Fresh off directing the long-awaited adaptation of the beloved novel A Wrinkle In Time, director Ava Durvernay found herself flirting with another blockbuster project - specifically an adaptation of Jack Kirby's New Gods. Duvernay previously had discussions with Marvel Studios about both Black Panther and Captain Marvel, but instead of taking part in the Marvel Cinematic Universe she will be lending her skills to the DC Extended Universe. New Gods will have audiences take a Boom Tube to the worlds of Apokolips and New Genesis - which are two alien worlds that have long been at war. Not much is known about the plot of the film at this point, but favorites like Mister Miracle, Big Barda, Orion, Granny Goodness and, of course, Darkseid, are expected to play significant parts.
Given the popularity of the entire Bat Family, it seemed inevitable that DC would finally decide to give Barbara Gordon her moment in the spotlight. While the role has not yet been cast, she will be making her debut in the DC Extended Universe via Cathy Yan's Birds of Prey, but the franchise has also been developing a solo project for the hero. Joss Whedon, who directed the reshoots on Justice League, was originally hired to pen the script for the movie, but he backed out about a year later when he simply couldn't find a proper hook for the story. This film's future likely heavily depends on the outcome of Birds of Prey, so we'll know a lot more about it come early 2020.
Following the unfortunate Green Lantern movie that came out in 2011, Warner Bros. and DC Comics are rebooting the story of the famed intergalactic peace keeping force by making a team movie instead of just focusing on a single Emerald Knight. Not much is known about the project yet, though it's been announced that the film will feature both Hal Jordan and John Stewart in addition to other famous peace keepers. What's interesting and unclear about Green Lantern's role in the DC Cinematic Universe is exactly when he will be introduced. It's surprising to many fans that he wasn't included as part of the original Justice League lineup (though one was briefly seen in a flashback in the film), and there haven't been any official announcements regarding who will be playing any of the Green Lanterns just yet. We may have to wait until Green Lantern Corps gets a firm release date before we hear anything about casting. Get the latest news and information about Green Lantern Corps HERE.
Following his appearances in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Suicide Squad, and Justice League, Ezra Miller's Barry Allen is expected next to be featured in his very own solo Flash film. Unfortunately, a lot of behind the scenes drama has created a situation where we have no idea when we will actually see the movie. Initially, it was writer Seth Grahame-Smith who was set to make his directorial debut with the blockbuster, but then Warner Bros, handed the reins over to Rick Famuyiwa -- known for directing the indie hit Dope. Sadly, he left the movie several months after signing on, citing "creative differences." Since then Game Night duo John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein have come aboard, but there has been limited chatter coming from behind the scenes about their plans for the new film. It looks like we'll have to exercise some patience with this one. Get the latest news and information about The Flash HERE.
Zack Snyder's Justice League wasn't the movie most people were expecting. Following serious overhauls in post-production, the team-up film got primarily negative reviews, and made less than every other DC Extended Universe feature that preceded it. Unfortunately, it was a surprise that knocked the franchise off kilter, and now even basic projects like Justice League 2 exist as big question marks. The first film's post-credits sequence seemed to set up the idea that Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) would be teaming up with Slade Wilson (Joe Manganiello) to form the Injustice League, but for now it's unclear if that concept will ever be full realized in live-action. Get the latest news and information about Justice League 2 HERE.
A few years ago, Warner Bros. and DC Comics had plans to give each of the founding Justice League members their own solo movies following the team-up... but those plans have kind of disintegrated. Case in point, we were originally supposed to see a Cyborg film released in 2020, but now that particular project doesn't even exist on the development slate. Things could certainly change for the character (played by Ray Fisher), but for now it doesn't seem like there is any forward motion on this one. Unlike many of the other Question Mark features you're about to read about, the project does not currently have a director, and it has not been revealed who is penning the script. You can get the latest news and information about Cyborg HERE.
The announcement of Matt Reeves as the new director for the solo Batman movie appears to have gotten the ball rolling on a renewed emphasis on The Bat Family in the DCEU. To capitalize on that, a Nightwing movie was announced in the winter of 2017, with The LEGO Batman Movie's Chris McKay attached to direct. Despite this news, the project was not mentioned during the DC Extended Universe slate revealed at SDCC 2017, which means it's unclear what the future holds for it (or if it's actually moving forward at this point).
When Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was first announced, it appeared from the outside that it would also serve as Man of Steel 2. As the project moved through development, however, it very much morphed into something else (a.k.a. the setup for Justice League), and while it dealt with consequences from the 2013 Zack Snyder movie, fans are going to have to wait for a legitimate second Superman solo film. Of course, what Man of Steel 2 will be about will entirely be defined by where it winds up landing in the timeline. It's been rumored that notable Superman baddies Darkseid and Brainiac could wind up playing key roles in future Justice League titles, so where would that leave a new Superman movie? Metallo? Cyborg Superman? Bizarro? We'll have to wait and see, as right now there are no immediate plans to get a Man of Steel 2 in theaters.
Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn was a standout from David Ayer's Suicide Squad, and the studio and actress have been working hard to figure out her next cinematic steps. She'll next appear in Birds of Prey, but Gotham City Sirens is another Harley-centric project that Warner Bros. wants to make. Screenwriter Christina Hodson has been hired to pen a treatment, and it's been confirmed that David Ayer will be taking the helm. Going by the title and comic book history, it's assumed that the feature will center on the adventures of Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy - though there has been no word on who will be getting that plum DC Extended Universe role. Gotham City Sirens wasn't mentioned during the Warner Bros. Hall H panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2017, so it could be a long way off.
The talk of Suicide Squad 2 and Gotham City Sirens has been accompanied by stories that DC intends to move forward with a solo movie centering on Will Smith's Deadshot - though it is another title that has yet to be officially confirmed. Given that Smith is still one of the biggest movie stars in the world, it makes sense that Warner Bros. and DC Comics would want to utilize him as much as possible, but it also doesn't seem like it's something they are rushing to do. Basically, you can expect that Will Smith's next DC Extended Universe feature will be Suicide Squad 2 instead of a solo feature.
Black Adam is easily the oddest feature we're going to discuss in this feature. Dwayne Johnson has been talking with Warner Bros. for years about playing Shazam villain Black Adam on the big screen, and the actor has spent a long time spreading news about plans for a Black Adam solo movie. Given all the talk, it was heavily expected that the project would be officially announced at San Diego Comic-Con 2017... but that didn't happen (all we got was the news that Dwayne Johnson WON'T be in the Shazam film). The would-be blockbuster does not have a director attached, nor a release date.
A few years ago, Warner Bros. claimed a bunch of release dates, acknowledging that they would be using them for DC Extended Universe titles, but not confirming anything beyond that. Now we have a clearer picture of the movies that the studio is actively developing, but what still isn't entirely clear is the order in which they will get made/distributed. As such, below we have highlighted the aforementioned release dates, and speculated as to what blockbusters could eventually fill the slots.
If all goes according to plan, the DC Extended Universe will be in full swing by 2020, and audiences will be craving new titles as soon as the latest one arrives in theaters. Because of this, the studio might use April 2020 to offer fans something entirely new. This might end up also being a good time for Suicide Squad 2, though it would be a seasonal shift for the growing series.
The Flash: Flashpoint is an interesting project for the DC Extended Universe, just because of the weird potential that rests within it. As noted earlier, the storyline has universe-changing implications, and if utilized properly it could alter the canon of the entire big screen universe. If the studio does plan to use the plot this way, it would make sense that it would be a project being held for release a few years from now. Perhaps in June of 2020...
There are a lot of eyes on what the DC Extended Universe winds up doing with the flag they've planted in July 2020, because that was originally going to be the release date for Green Lantern Corps - the big screen reintroduction of the Emerald Knights following the disastrous adventure back in 2011. If Warner Bros. decides that it's not yet time to go back to the Lantern well, though, it might actually be a another perfect date for Suicide Squad 2.