It's fair to say Justice League was a disappointment. It flopped at the box office, let down a lot of fans, and has, ultimately, reshaped the direction of DC's cinematic future by offering a road map on what not to do. However, the film also offered a great potential future for the DC Extended Universe that has been largely ignored. We saw Green Lanterns fighting alongside Atlanteans and Greek gods. We saw the possibility of Darkseid. We saw Superman return from the dead.
However, one really tempting possibility for the DCEU was that of Deathstroke, who appeared in the after-credits scene of Justice League, which teased him as a future member of Lex Luthor's Legion of Doom. Slade Wilson, in this cameo, was played by Joe Manganiello, who just so happened to be at New York Comic-Con 2019. So CBR asked him what he could tell us about Deathstroke's future in the DCEU and his experience playing the role. What little he could reveal didn't paint a promising picture for fans still hoping to see Manganiello trading blows with Batfleck.
We Asked Him About Justice League
When asked about his time working as Deathstroke on Justice League, Manganiello laughed and said, "Someday I'll write a book about it, but that time is... yeah."
He couldn't elaborate too much more due to non-disclosure agreements. From that quote, however, we can extrapolate a great deal. Most of it, sadly, DC fans probably don't want to figure out.
After all, the Deathstroke film, once in development, has remained on ice ever since Justice League. And Deathstroke hasn't been included in any other DC film properties, such as The Suicide Squad (though the character is appearing in DC Universe's Titans). While it is impossible to never say never in Hollywood, given Manganiello's comments, we need to ask: "Is Deathstroke gone from the DCEU?"
Those Days are Done
Manganiello could neither confirm nor deny that he's still committed to playing Deathstroke. However, it seems clear that whatever initial plans filmmakers had for Deathstroke are no longer in place, which seems to tie in with much of what we know about Justice League.
Justice League was a notoriously troubled production, with Zack Snyder being replaced in reshoots by Joss Whedon, and the storyline being revised a great deal. The theoretical Snyder Cut of Justice League remains sought after by a massive subset of fans. However, what Manganiello's comments indicate is that Justice League wasn't only a mess in reshoots. It was a mess during shooting and after. And fans still don't know about most of what went wrong .
While many fans want to see Snyder's original vision for Justice League, it's highly possible that the story behind one of the biggest financial flops in superhero cinema history will make a far more interesting story. If Manganiello ever does write a book about his experiences on Justice League, it would become essential reading for any fan of superhero media.