The DC Extended Universe has been riding some euphoric highs in recent years. Just look at 2017’s box-office smash, Wonder Woman and the fantastically feelgood surprise that was 2019’s Shazam!
Happily, that wave shows no sign of slowing down with the 22 August DC FanDome 2020 event triggering the release of a bunch of tantalising teasers for the roster of DC films due for years to come.
So put a Do Not Disturb sign on your personal Fortress of Solitude/Batcave/Themysciran villa and join us for a rundown of all the DC movies heading your way, from Wonder Woman 1984 (2020), to James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad (2021) reboot/sequel, The Batman (2022) and Dwayne Johnson’s superhero debut in Black Adam (TBC).
Wonder Woman 1984
Wonder Woman 1984 UK release date: 16 December 2020
Director Patty Jenkins and star Gal Gadot follow up 2017’s Wonder Woman – an origin story set during the global chaos of World War One – by coming (a bit more) up to date, to the day-glo, volumised 1980s. The immortal Diana Prince has been quietly keeping watch over the world of Man for 66 years, but her greatest challenge is yet to come as a megalomaniac businessman and former friend with newfound powers join forces to bring the world to its knees.
The big news at DC FanDome was a brand-new, full-length trailer that added weight to one theory, confirmed a cute role reversal, and revealed one of Wonder Woman 1984’s new characters in their full, feline glory:
The Suicide Squad
The Suicide Squad UK release date: 6 August 2021
We’re very excited about The Suicide Squad. Writer and Director, James Gunn knows a thing or two about turning also-ran comic book characters into household names – he’s responsible for Guardians of the Galaxy Vols 1 and 2. And now he’s working his ensemble-cast movie magic on DC’s crew of very reluctant heroes, the Suicide Squad, in what’s being billed as both a sequel to 2016’s Suicide Squad and a soft reboot of the franchise.
It’s too early for a full trailer for The Suicide Squad, so instead DC FanDome dropped a fantastic roll-call of the new (and heavily expanded) Suicide Squad, plus a wonderfully unhinged behind-the-scenes teaser of what’s to come.
The Batman UK release date: 4 March 2022
‘Who is the Batman?’ isn’t just a fearful question whispered by Gotham’s criminal underworld – it’s a legitimate query in the face of Ben Affleck’s retirement-then-reinstatement as the DCEU’s Dark Knight for 2022’s The Flash, and intriguing on-set glimpses of Robert Pattinson in Bats’ iconic cowl.
So how does Pattinson’s turn in The Batman fit into the DC Extended Universe? Short answer: it doesn’t. Director Matt Reeves’ take on Batman is a standalone movie set during a young Bruce Wayne’s second year as Gotham’s Caped Crusader and, as DC FanDome’s brooding teaser trailer revealed – it promises to be bracingly dark and twisted.
The Batman’s teaser trailer was the news at the DC FanDome event – with only a third of the film shot before the COVID-19 lockdown began, it’s frankly impressive that the first glimpse of the movie looks so well fleshed out.
Black Adam UK release date: TBC
Don’t know who Black Adam is? You will. This DC anti-hero is part of the Shazam universe (Shazamziverse?) and he’s about to be played by none other than box-office behemoth, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson. Black Adam has quite the epic backstory – over 5,000 years’ worth – but in essence, Black Adam has the same powers as Billy Batson/Shazam, but is a lot less concerned about being good and moral. Over the years, Black Adam and Shazam have been sworn enemies and begrudging allies. But which Black Adam will we meet?
Principal photography for Black Adam is not due to start until early 2021, but that didn’t stop Dwayne Johnson and DC from dropping a concept art-filled teaser trailer that served to set the scene for what promises to be a thrillingly moody Shazam spinoff.
DC films on the horizon
Brought to the big screen by Jared Stern (who wrote Lego Batman and The Lego Ninjago Movie), for now, little is known about this CG animated adventure inspired by DC’s Legion of Super Pets (really, it’s a whole thing). But rest assured, as soon as we know which of the super good boys and girls are in Super Pets we’ll let you know.
While Ezra Miller’s first solo adventure is a way off it’s potentially one of the most intriguing DC movies yet. Director Andrew Muschietti has described it as a time-travel story and it looks likely to embrace the fashionable multiverse theme that’s been a staple of comics for decades and that’s also being explored by the MCU with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
In practice this leads to a pretty epic reveal: that, inspired by the DC comic storyline Flashpoint, The Flash 2022 could well feature not one but two Batmans (Batmen?) – Ben Affleck’s current DC Extended Universe Batman and Michael Keaton’s 1989 Batman!
Returning director James Wan says the Aquaman sequel will be "a little bit more serious, a little bit more relevant to the world that we're living in today." That’s all we have for now.
For now, all we have is the title. More details as soon as they’re released.