It all started with Man of Steel in 2013, the first entry in DC's Extended Universe of movies. Then, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice positioned many more pieces on a board that would lead to the universe's first big superhero team-up movie, Justice League. The movie's release is only a month away, and it will cap off four years of planning on Warner Bros.' part. However, it stands to reason that, despite a lukewarm critical and financial reception to the universe's early movies, the studio's plans have changed, many times over.
It would take up to this year's Wonder Woman for DC to secure its most definitive win. With Amazonian Princess' success as a springboard, the DCEU now has a proper sense of direction it may not have had before. It's widely known now that Zack Snyder's Justice League has gone through many re-shoots under the direction of Joss Whedon and wherever the movie sends our favorite characters off, they will now be firmly established in a universe – nay, a multiverse – of movies that will only keep expanding as time goes on. Today, CBR travels through DC's plans to lists 15 – yes, 15! – movies currently in development.
15 SUICIDE SQUAD 2
Suicide Squad may not have been the all-around hit everyone, from fans to WB, wanted it to be, but it did manage to make quite a bit of money at the box-office – more than enough to justify a sequel. While it took a bit of time for development of this sequel to hit the ground running, the project has since reportedly been put on the fast-track to shoot for a 2019 release date.
However, it has also been recently reported that main star Will Smith, who portrays mercenary assassin Deadshot, would not be available to shoot the film until the fall of 2018. With the window of production and release rapidly tightening, Suicide Squad 2's release may have to be pushed back for the time being. At least this should give director Gavin O'Connor ample time to give us a sequel worthy of praise.
14 MAN OF STEEL 2
After Man of Steel failed to light up the box-office and garner the critical praise that WB had hoped, plans for a sequel were seemingly put on hold, and ultimately changed to bring Batman into the DCEU in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Instead of a Superman sequel, we had a movie that laid the groundwork for a shared cinematic universe and that also introduced many new heroes.
With Superman slated to appear in Justice League next (hopefully!), plans are still in motion to see what direction the character will take after this. Man of Steel 2 isn't happening just yet, but WB is looking at directors right now – most recently, Kinsgman director Matthew Vaughn expressed interest in taking on the job – to see who would be a good fit to launch Superman into a brighter and more hopeful tomorrow.
13 HARLEY AND JOKER
Harley Quinn and the Joker were without a doubt the breakout stars of Suicide Squad, with their murderous quirks and madly deranged relationship of equal parts love and hate. It shouldn't come as surprise then to discover that WB is planning on making a movie with the Clown Prince and Princess of Crime as its main characters.
Jared Leto and Margot Robbie are expected to return, although there isn't a script or production start date yet – that we know of. We're not exactly sure what a movie starring these two would look like, but there's a solid chance that it might feature quite a lot of other DC characters to round out the cast. But the biggest question is will the careered criminals be villains, or heroes? That remains to be seen.
A movie starring The Flash has been on WB's plate for a long time but, ironically, somehow it took a very long time for it to get any traction. It was only recently that previous plans, directors and scripts were dropped to make way for a completely new direction for the Flash's first solo outing. At this year's San Diego Comic-Con, it was revealed that the movie would now be titled Flashpoint.
What does that mean for the Ezra Miller-fronted film? It means that we won't be getting the traditional origin or solo movie, but instead something that is much more massive, both in depth and in scope -- something that is different, but just as character-defining as any other story. Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman is rumored to appear in the film, and hopefully Jason Momoa can follow suit in a production that aims at the year 2020 for a release date.
11 THE BATMAN
After the Justice League movie is released, audiences will be wondering when they will see Ben Affleck's Batman next. While a solo movie is planned, it will still be quite a ways off. You might have heard about the many behind-the-scenes shake-ups that occurred with this production, where Affleck was at one time slated to both write and direct the movie while starring in it as well.
The actor has since scaled back on his responsibilities in order to focus all of his energies on playing Batman as best as he can. Matt Reeves has since been tapped to direct, and we are eager to see what the War For The Planet Of The Apes director has in store for the caped crusader. Joe Manganiello was at one time cast to play Slade Wilson, aka Deathstroke, but the production changes have cast a shadow of doubt over his involvement.
10 GOTHAM CITY SIRENS
Margot Robbie's energetic, spot-on take on Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad resonated so much with audiences that she instantly became a fan-favorite and staple of the DCEU. Obviously, WB knew it had gold on its hands even before the movie's release, and now, with the raucous response to the character, the studio is doubling-down on its Harley Quinn-related efforts.
Hoping to let the character shine even more than she did in Suicide Squad, WB has planned a Gotham City Sirens movie, starring the devious team of Catwoman, Poison Ivy and the Clown Princess of Crime as the new unlikely defenders of Gotham City. Squad director David Ayer was at one time attached to work on the film, but thanks to conflicting reports, we are unsure if that is still indeed the case.
Against all odds, Billy Batson is the next hero that will be hitting the big screen after Aquaman takes the world by storm next year. Currently slated for release on April 5th 2019, the Shazam! movie has no actors officially cast, but it does have a director in the form of Lights Out helmer David Sandberg.
Surprisingly, the next big DC hero to appear in the DCEU will not be one of its most famous, but certainly one of its most endearing. Captain Marvel, otherwise known as Shazam, is the alter-ego of young Billy Batson, who gains the power of six otherworldly gods when he shouts the name of the wizard who has granted him these powers – "Shazam!" Many actors have been rumored to take on the role of the charismatic superhero, but Sandberg has assured us that casting news should arrive soon.
8 GREEN LANTERN CORPS
After five DCEU movies, we finally had confirmation that the Green Lanterns exist somewhere in the cosmos thanks to Steppenwolf's dialogue in the Justice League trailer. It comes as no surprise then that a movie starring the will-powered intergalactic police force is actively in the works. A Green Lantern Corps movie has been in the cards at WB for a while, but we had further confirmation of it during this year's San Diego Comic-Con.
In fact, the movie's logo and title card were officially released as part of the studios slate of upcoming DC movies. Which Lanterns the movie will focus on remains to be seen, whether that is Hal Jordan, John Stewart, Guy Gardner, Kyle Rayner, someone else altogether or all of them combined. Originally supposed to drop in 2020, a constantly changing and expanding slate of films may change that release date.
While we have yet to hear official confirmation that Richard “Dick” Grayson does in fact exist in the DCEU alongside Ben Affleck's Bruce Wayne, we already know that a movie starring Nightwing, the acrobat/former Robin turned solo crime-fighter, is coming. The Lego Batman Movie director Chris McKay is currently taking his time to work on the movie's story and approach in a bid to get the character just right.
Nightwing is a beloved character to many DC fans, so this is one movie that is already highly-anticipated. But with no official release date confirmed yet, we will just have to wait and see what the director's vision for Dick Grayson's solo adventures is, if they involve a role for Batman himself, in any capacity, and which actor will be cast in the role.
6 BLACK ADAM
There was a time when Black Adam, the arch-nemesis of Shazam, aka Captain Marvel, was slated to appear in the magical superhero's movie as the antagonist of the piece. In fact, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was cast in the role, before the movie was ever in production. Since then however, plans have changed: Black Adam will no longer appear in Shazam.
But with Johnson still firmly attached to the role, it seems like WB's goal is now to make a Black Adam movie. The actor certainly has the charisma and star-power to make a movie about a villain who is mostly unknown to the audience outside of the comic book crowd, and it will be an interesting take to see the villain turned into an anti-hero, as Johnson himself has mentioned.
The Bat-family is a very large group of crime-fighters and the notion that, in Batman v. Superman, Batman has been operating as a masked vigilante in Gotham City for more than 20 years has swung the door wide open for its expansion. We already know that a Robin came to die at the hands of the Joker, and we already know that a solo Nightwing movie is planned.
Next in line is Barbara Gordon, aka Batgirl. A fan-favorite and icon to many, Batgirl's arrival in the DCEU is something that fans have been clamoring for ever since the extended cut of Dawn of Justice was announced. Renowned Avengers director and upcoming co-director of Justice League Joss Whedon has sold WB on his take of Batgirl, and we can't wait to see her make her grand entrance in the DCEU.
4 JOKER ORIGIN
When everyone was wondering where Jared Leto's Joker would pop-up on the big screen next, WB threw us for a loop when it announced plans for a different kind of movie: an origin story that would tell of the Joker's rise to power in a different kind of Gotham City. Billed as a gangster film, this movie would take place in the '80s and would potentially star a different actor in the titular role.
Produced by Martin Scorsese, the film will reportedly be directed and co-written by War Dogs helmer Todd Phillips. The news came with the added announcement that the DC movies would not all take place in the universe established by Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman and Wonder Woman. Instead, under an Elseworlds-inspired banner, these new movies would not be beholden to any continuity.
3 RED SON
Superman: Red Son is a production that has fallen under the radar, because its production is much more secretive. In fact, it hasn't even been confirmed yet. But the answers all lie in the details, the most recent of which was a Twitter exchange between Mark Millar – who wrote the original Elseworlds graphic novel – and Kong: Skull Island director Jordan Vogt-Roberts.
The online discussion revealed that Roberts had previously pitched a Red Son movie to WB when Millar mentioned that two other directors had been courted to make the movie a reality. With increasing reports that DC is looking to branch out its universe with Elseworlds movies, it would come as no surprise that WB is developing a film on a famous comic that explored what would happen if Superman were raised in the Soviet Union instead of America.
Aquaman is the DCEU movie that is furthest along the line of production right now. Cameras have been rolling for a good while, and set pictures and reports have shown a little of what the movie will look like. Starring Jason Momoa and Amber Heard as Arthur Curry and Mera, the movie will be directed by famed horror director James Wan, and we wouldn't be surprised if a trailer surfaces (pun intended) very soon.
Slated for release on December 21st 2018, the movie will serve as the first solo Aquaman movie, as well as an unofficial sequel of sorts to this year's Justice League, considering that pieces set up in the ensemble team-up movie will surely be picked up on when Aquaman finds himself on his own. Anticipations are high for this movie, and many will wonder how Wan will pull off a film which takes place mostly underwater.
1 WONDER WOMAN 2
Wonder Woman kicked every door down to become DC's most successful film, smashing records and becoming a renewed icon all at the same time. Of course, with the amount of success that the movie garnered, WB didn't hesitate to give a sequel the green light. Patty Jenkins will return to direct, and of course Gal Gadot will once again perfectly embody the Amazon Princess.
The movie will be hitting theaters on December 13th 2019, and you'd be forgiven for already marking your calendars. The movie is rumored to take place in the '80s instead of the early 1900s, to bring Steve Trevor back in some capacity, and it might also see Diana make her long awaited first trip to America. However, we won't have to wait that long to see Wonder Woman in action again... Justice League is right around the corner.
Which DC movies are you most excited to see? Let us know in the comments!