DCEU Shakeup: What It Means?
We are merely days into the new year and couple weeks from the Justice League box office disappointment, but all of the dust has settled with Warner Bros. Pictures struggling to steer the ship. I rather enjoyed the film, which lacked in quality compared to both Wonder Woman and Man of Steel, it had the heart and respect for the characters.
Constant pushes in interfering with director vision and has made the DC movies shadows of their former selves, forgetting to treat audiences importantly. Despite modest success at the box office, we are living in the Batman and Robin era of DC – with the studio not believing in their directors pushing away from vision. Zack Snyder universe architect is no doubt a controversial figure in the film world, as Man of Steel and Batman v Superman changed attributes of famous characters. A similar situation to the ongoing hate train of Rian Johnson’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which had the same faith despite being a stable iteration.
Justice League disappointing results is a product of disconnect from the studio and audiences, with clashing ideas. Warner Bros. Pictures at the core didn’t feel at home with Snyder’s vision, after so much negative press from his last project. Pushing the director into an unnatural position and having to rush a final cut: leaving all the control in the Warner Bros. hand after personal issues. Thus, resulting in new directors hoping for and creating a Frankenstein monster.
Now outside of these known facts, the truth lies in the fact Justice League has only taken in only $226 million at the US box office and $650 million worldwide, nearly two months after release. A severe change after the success of last summer’s Wonder Woman, a knockout film for the DCEU – gathering over $400 million at the US box office.
In comparison to Man of Steel, which kicked off the DCEU in 2013 to mixed reviews raising $291 at the US box office. It’s likely Justice League will be closer to the Man of Steel global gross of $668 million, falling short of Batman v Superman’s ($330 domestic/$873m worldwide) – wrong numbers considering Man of Steel was the start of the DCEU. This doesn’t mean the end of a universe, as Aquaman (November 2018), Shazam which starts photography for the planned 2019 release (and Wonder Woman 2 due for the same year, the errors of past films needed to be ironed out.
Last month it was confirmed that Jon Berg would be moving on from his role at DC Films, with changes in store for Geoff John’s as well. Warner Bros. has now named Walter Harada (Conjuring) the new head of DC Film’s – Johns will be the president of DC and advise on the film business. “I’m confident Walter and Geoff, working with our filmmaking partners, will deliver films that will resonate with both broad global audiences as well as DC fanboys and fangirls,” said Warner Bros President and CCO Toby Emmerich in a statement (via Variety).
These changes won’t come into effect for some time, but aspect a quieter shared universe after Aquaman and Shazam release. Due to a continued talk about WB looking to focus on standalone driven films, as Justice League went nowhere. I believe that the DCEU will continue but don’t expect a team up sequel anytime soon. Harada has some work on her hands, but I have faith in the new head.