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The DC Extended Universe: To Thanagar and Beyond!

I maintain that BvS is the most accurate and compelling adaptation of Lex Luthor and his resentment/rivalry with Superman ever, other than the weird choice to have him dress up like a Bat and hang out with his Butler all the time.

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Rosie Perez Joins Margot Robbie in 'Birds of Prey'

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Rosie Perez is signing up for Birds of Prey.

Perez will join Margot Robbie in the Warner Bros./DC movie as the comic book character Renee Montoya, The Holywood Reporter has confirmed. 

Montoya is a Gotham City police detective who would go on to adopt the masked identity of the Question in the comics. Montoya, who is a lesbian, rose to become one of DC's more prominent LGBTQ characters in the 2000s.

Edited by Dee.
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If Gordon isn't in the movie (and that could go either way), maybe she is a Commissioner or Captain in it. 

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1 hour ago, BetterButter said:

I guess Marvel's loss is DC's gain, but I'm doubtful that Gunn can rescue the Suicide Squad sub-franchise. Suicide Squad was openly aping Guardians, but more incompetently. Two things always make the Suicide Squad worth exploring whether in comics, animated, or live action: 1. the audience cares enough about the real heroes to provide narrative tension to the question of whether the Squad will succeed and 2. the audience cares enough about at least a couple of members of the Squad to hope they survive.

As to the first issue, WB has done a shit job at making me care about anyone other than Wonder Woman and maybe Alfred, who is strangely more proactive than Bruce in the DCEU. The audience should be invested in why the Squad is deployed. Have our heroes turned bad? Or have the heroes failed and this is the last line of defense? DC has done precious little to make this world seem real or to have the audience invested in it that when a shimmying witch starts pontificating about resurrecting her warlock brother and taking over the earth, one can barely muster up a yawn. "Oh noes, not the earth."

On the second point, I've watched Suicide Squad and a number of video reviews, I literally couldn't tell you which characters made it out alive other than Harley and Will Smith (Deadshot?). The hula witch died, right? What about Diablo (fire guy)? I know Jai Courtney's Cap'n Boomerang is still alive because no one has ever been able to kill off one of his insufferable characters in the first installment of anything after he left Spartacus. Is Katana still alive? They did fuck all with her.

Best of luck to James Gunn. Guardians was weird and unknown, but fixing Suicide Squad is going to be tough because it's now known, weird, and bad.

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Interesting. I feel that Disney was a little overzealous when it came to Gunn. He made some bad taste jokes, but that's all. I can see why DC would grab him. But I'm just not interested in Suicide Squad. Will he change my mind? Possibly, but I'm skeptical.

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I never followed the comics Suicide Squad. But I loved the oddly similar in premise Secret Six series. Villains banding together and acting quasi-heroically. It even also has Deadshot as a member. Great humor and actual good storylines. Maybe Gunn can morph it into that?

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On 10/9/2018 at 5:22 PM, HunterHunted said:

I guess Marvel's loss is DC's gain, but I'm doubtful that Gunn can rescue the Suicide Squad sub-franchise.

The thing is, Suicide Squad was far more successful than anticipated, so I'm not sure "rescue" is what they're looking for.  Yes, it was critically maligned, but it took in a ton of money, I'm guessing primarily from disaffected teens who know what day new clothes arrive at Hot Topic.  I can't comment on the GotG comparisons as I haven't seen those movies, but for me it finally struck me that SS was essentially Miami Vice, all about pop cuts and style.  Which, I was and am fine with.

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1 hour ago, MarkHB said:

The thing is, Suicide Squad was far more successful than anticipated, so I'm not sure "rescue" is what they're looking for.  Yes, it was critically maligned, but it took in a ton of money, I'm guessing primarily from disaffected teens who know what day new clothes arrive at Hot Topic.  I can't comment on the GotG comparisons as I haven't seen those movies, but for me it finally struck me that SS was essentially Miami Vice, all about pop cuts and style.  Which, I was and am fine with.

It's almost certainly the film that tanked the DCEU. It's strike 3 in a series of ever diminishing expectations. It might have over performed, but that's the last time that happened with a DC/WB movie. I watched it on HBO and it was awful and clearly so in the first 15 minutes. My siblings did not talk about to each other about the film, but each independently saw it and hated it. It's honestly the most incompetent of all of the DCEU films.

And it's been confirmed that WB panicked when they saw Ayers' footage and paid Trailer Park, a studio that creates trailers, to edit the entire film to make it more like Guardians. There are at least 3 separate versions of the film edited by 3 completely separate people/teams. It's actually more of a catastrophe than the box office suggests.

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If Gunn is smart, he'll keep Harley, Deadshot, Waller and Boomerang.

Then add about four or five newbies into the mix.

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49 minutes ago, darkestboy said:

If Gunn is smart, he'll keep Harley, Deadshot, Waller and Boomerang.

Then add about four or five newbies into the mix.

Are the actors contractually obligated?  Margot Robbie and Viola Davis would be amazing with a good script.  I can never buy Will Smith as a bad guy.  There is something so fundamentally decent about him on screen.  

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1 hour ago, darkestboy said:

If Gunn is smart, he'll keep Harley, Deadshot, Waller and Boomerang.

Then add about four or five newbies into the mix.

30 minutes ago, Ruby Gillis said:

Are the actors contractually obligated?  Margot Robbie and Viola Davis would be amazing with a good script.  I can never buy Will Smith as a bad guy.  There is something so fundamentally decent about him on screen.  

 

I agree with keeping Harley, Deadshot, and Waller. Harley is always compelling. Deadshot, Smith's character, has vacillated between villain and anti-hero in the comics. In Arrow before DC embargoed the character again, he was a villain for like an episode and a half, an anti-hero for the rest his run on the show, and an actual good guy on Earth-2. Waller is always a fascinating character. One of the things I've always loved about her appearances in the Animated Justice League series is that it was really clear heavy hitters like Batman and Lex Luthor respected her because she was brilliant, ruthless, and unyielding. She couldn't fly, pick up a car, or shoot energy blasts, but if she had you in her sights there's a good chance you were a dead man walking.

I thought Boomerang was awful, but admittedly I wish Hollywood stop trying to make Jai Courtney a going concern. It's not happening. Most of the reviews only mention that he was in the cast, which tells me that in this wildly overstuffed film he basically did nothing to distinguish himself.

He's in fine company because Karen Fukuhara and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje were wasted too. It's especially glaring in the latter situation because Akinnuoye-Agbaje has managed to add at least one and it could be argued two-ish indelible characters to the pop culture lexicon: full on Adebisi from Oz, 65% of Mr. Eko from Lost; and 35% Nykwanna Wombosi from the Bourne Identity (the thing a lot of people forget is that this character had like 5 mostly generic lines of dialogue in the entire film; so the fact that any of the performance is memorable is a nearish miracle).

I've always loved Inque, a metahuman thief and assassin, from Batman Beyond's rogues. Much like Deadshot, she's got a daughter she's trying to protect. She sends the kid off to be cared for by someone else to protect the girl. The irony of this is that the daughter still ends up a sociopath, which kind of breaks the last vestiges of humanity in Inque. I wouldn't mind seeing her crossover to the DCEU.

As to who else I'd add, Thinker or Clock King, Bronze Tiger or someone else from the League of Assassins, the Electrocutioner, and Killer Croc or Mammoth.

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2 hours ago, HunterHunted said:

As to who else I'd add, Thinker or Clock King, Bronze Tiger or someone else from the League of Assassins, the Electrocutioner, and Killer Croc or Mammoth.

Let's see, they'll need a tree person to match Groot, so maybe Swamp Thing.  A furry talking animal - Detective Chimp to the rescue.  Capt. Boomerang can be revamped to be more like Drax.  Harley could be squeezed into the Gamora/Nebula peg, complete with jackass male as a strong influence.  Will Smith can be his usual Will Smith self so that will give DC its own GotG lite to work with.

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It's best to think of the Guardians more like a heist/caper crew. This is also why Suicide Squad never worked; they had too many characters some of whom had duplicate skills.

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/BadassCrew

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/CaperCrew

The Guardians are:

  • A boss/leader and Wild Card--Peter Quill
  • A tech guy--Rocket
  • A distraction/thief/assassin--Gamora 
  • Muscle--Drax
  • New Kid--Groot

Groot is actually the New Kid in both movies. In GotG 1, he's sweet and well meaning. In 2, he's literally a baby--an irritable foul mouthed baby, but a baby nonetheless.

And even when you look at Marvel's other heist franchise, Ant Man, you'll see that there is:

  • Mastermind/Backer--Hank Pym
  • Partner in Crime/Second in Command--Hope Van Dyne-Pym
  • Thief--Scott Lange
  • Inside man--Luis
  • Tech guy--Kurt
  • Getaway driver--Dave

Suicide Squad had:

  • Mastermind/Backer--Amanda Waller
  • Partner in Crime/Second in Command--Rick Flagg
  • Heavy hitter/Muscle--Killer Croc, Diablo, and Enchantress before she turned
  • The Coordinator--Deadshot, though it's clear Flagg was supposed to do more of that
  • Wild Card--Harley

This leaves Boomerang, Katana, and Slipknot in weird undefined roles with minimal usefulness.

And while comic book properties often require 2 to 3 three different types of muscle/heavy hitters: close in stealth assassins, just plain strong, and distance projectiles and energy blasts, Suicide Squad had multiple characters with similar skills. Do you really need Diablo, Enchantress, Deadshot, and Boomerang to provide longer distance projectile/energy support? No. Then pick one or two at most. Even if you axe Boomerang, but keep the rest, it frees up a little time to come up with a slightly better narrative arc for Diablo who was always going to die. That actually results in more pathos. This opens up a tiny bit of space demonstrate that Killer Croc is the muscle guy and Katana is the stealth member of the team. Rather than killing Slipknot, they could have slotted in Kilg%re or Manfred Mota as the team's tech expert, which is a completely unfilled role, and killed this character to highlight just how serious and ruthlessWaller is.

However, I must say that I didn't give two shits about June Moon's star-crossed love affair with Rick Flagg. I would have rather she had been a random threat unconnected to anyone in the Squad.

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36 minutes ago, HunterHunted said:

This is also why Suicide Squad never worked; they had too many characters some of whom had duplicate skills.

 

36 minutes ago, HunterHunted said:

This leaves Boomerang, Katana, and Slipknot in weird undefined roles with minimal usefulness.

Well, I figure they had to have at least X members so they really call it a squad. But I agree some weren't needed or used well. I disagree about Slipknot, though - his role was to die.

In general, I believe a hero(protagonist) is only as good as its villain(antagonist); so my main problem with Suicide Squad was when we found out they got sent to rescue Waller from her own mess. LAME. Then they had to defeat ... an actual demigod?? It was ridiculous in a bad way.

A large Squad would have been fine if they had a threat/mission that somewhat matched their skills and strengths.

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2 hours ago, Trini said:

But I agree some weren't needed or used well. I disagree about Slipknot, though - his role was to die.

Ehhh, I still think it was a cheap and pointless death.  You can kill off someone who seems essential to really highlight the odds, that anyone can die, or the seriousness of the situation. Slipknot was not an essential guy nor did his death highlight the odds. Instead his death was used to illustrate that Waller was a ruthless jerk who really would blow their heads up. Well, the fact that he was a dead man climbing was already foreshadowed when he was the ONLY member of the Squad to not receive and onscreen character bio. Flagg introduces him as the man who can climb anything and that's it. So when Slipknot gets blown up, it's not a surprise because the movie already tipped its hand at showing that he was superfluous. And had the film indicated earlier on what the mission parameters were and his skills seemed absolutely essential, his death would have had more impact.

That leads me to conclude that his death was intended mostly as a joke. It mostly fails. Jokes like this really need to obey the rules of three (multiples or repetition). Think Kenny's repeated deaths on South Park, Brett's repeated near fatal shootings for multiple seasons on Archer, or recently the deaths of nearly every member of X-Force in Deadpool 2. So had the film padded out the Squad with some true Z-list villains who kept getting their heads blown up until Waller kills off someone who seems actually essential, you get a double--pathos from the Squad as they truly worry about their lives and comedy about how truly BSC Waller is.

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In general, I believe a hero(protagonist) is only as good as its villain(antagonist); so my main problem with Suicide Squad was when we found out they got sent to rescue Waller from her own mess. LAME. Then they had to defeat ... an actual demigod?? It was ridiculous in a bad way.

A large Squad would have been fine if they had a threat/mission that somewhat matched their skills and strengths.

Waller is a truly compelling antagonist. I don't even really have a problem with the mission. A hell/disaster of one's own making has a long proud tradition in human history going back thousands of years. However, the movie bungled the set up. In my version, we're first introduced to the Squad during a briefing Waller is giving. And much like the Avengers Initiative, the Suicide Squad needs to be introduced as an also ran. Instead of introducing the Squad before Waller's briefing with the Joint Chiefs as actually hapoened in the film, they should have been introduced during the briefing or after. The briefing needed to talk about all of the other avenues that they pursuing:

  1. Trying to weaponize any of the salvaged alien technology including from the Kryptonian ship and that box Star Labs has been examining after the British had it for decades. However, Waller can highlight that they have no idea how long it will be before they have anything useful to show for their efforts.
  2. Trying to weaponize any magical or mystical items that they have including the statute of the goddess that June Moone accidentally breaks to become Enchantress. She can also mention the helmet of Doctor Fate, but caution that every time you start messing with these magical artifacts people start getting possessed by ancient gods and spirits.
  3. The Suicide Squad, the members, and how she'll keep them in line. She'll highlight that they already have the skills to accomplish the missions she'll have them running. Also enchantress is not on the Squad and has no connection to Rick Flagg.

The Joint Chiefs give Waller her orders; they do not include anything about the Suicide Squad. As the briefing is concluding, a couple of members pull her aside to talk about the Suicide Squad. She very pragmatically lays out that the first two options might bear greater fruit in the long run. But in the immediate future, the Suicide Squad is the best option. One of the people in the smaller discussion says that they will let the president know about Waller's recommendation.

This actually makes ithe mission slightly more ambiguous. It also better highlights that many many many people in the American government were willing to fool around with dangerous items that they didn't understand. This time it was Waller and Moone who ended up getting burned. Next time it's Victor and Silas Stone. It also demonstrates that the government is pursuing many items for defense: science, mystical, and wetworks.

We cut to the prison where the members of the Squad are being summoned like in the film. It mostly plays out the same way.

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They could have given more of an intro to Boomerang (although I loved the Flash cameo), but in truth his role on the Squad is the same as it was in the comics: to be an asshole.  They actually toned him down a bit in the movie from the 80's Ostrander run; the main reason I quit buying that book at the time was because I was tired of reading him being such a miserable shit.

The bit with Waller being the Macguffin was somewhat lost, IMHO, because by the time we get to the Federal building the movie has let us forget that they're supposed to be rescuing someone, and so the twist that Waller has put bombs in these people's necks and sent them into Hell just to save her own sorry ass doesn't land as it should.

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2 hours ago, HunterHunted said:

Ehhh, I still think it was a cheap and pointless death.  You can kill off someone who seems essential to really highlight the odds, that anyone can die, or the seriousness of the situation. Slipknot was not an essential guy nor did his death highlight the odds. Instead his death was used to illustrate that Waller was a ruthless jerk who really would blow their heads up. Well, the fact that he was a dead man climbing was already foreshadowed when he was the ONLY member of the Squad to not receive and onscreen character bio. Flagg introduces him as the man who can climb anything and that's it. So when Slipknot gets blown up, it's not a surprise because the movie already tipped its hand at showing that he was superfluous. And had the film indicated earlier on what the mission parameters were and his skills seemed absolutely essential, his death would have had more impact.

Or even before the movie - if you were really paying attention to the marketing, you could tell Slipknot was going to be the first one to bite it.

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Incidentally, the hiring of James Gunn to write Suicide Squad 2 was called "official" on today's DC Daily.  They repeated the "fresh new take" line as well.

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Thats a major move by DC to hire Gunn to basically write their knock off Guardians sequel after Disney fired him. You know, I kind of came around to the idea that Disney was too hasty in firing  Gunn, and I had hoped they could get him back for Guardians 3, but I guess thats off the table. He could probably do more to help Suicide Squad be more cohesive, but they would require quite a bit of re-tooling. 

Really, it would be awesome if they just made a Secret Six movie instead, as thats clearly more of the vibe they wanted, more so than Suicide Squad. A band of quirky, mostly non A List villains team up to fight worse people than them, while snarking and bonding as a super dysfunctional family? Yep, its all right there, DC!

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Flash Standalone Movie Pushes Start Date, Eyes 2021 Release

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Warner Bros. is pushing back the start of filming on the studio’s still untitled standalone Flash film, sources tell Variety. The film never received a formal greenlight nor did it have a set release date, but it had been expected to begin shooting in March. However, a script is still being tweaked and the studio thinks that it won’t have enough time to get the script in shape in order for the film to make its original start date.

That’s a problem, because Ezra Miller, the live-wire performer tasked with playing the Flash, also has a key supporting role in “Fantastic Beasts,” the “Harry Potter” spin-off series. The third film in the franchise begins shooting in July, which would cause scheduling headaches. The standalone Flash film is now expected to commence production in late 2019. That likely means the superhero adventure won’t debut in theaters until some time in 2021.

Edited by Dee.
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I have a feeling the Flash movie we end up getting will be 100% separate from the Flash we saw in JL. Goodbye Ezra Miller and any other actor attached to the project.

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To be honest, I might not mind that happening if it means that the movie doesn't turn out to be Quick Sheldon. As much as I love Miller, I found far more of his performance cringeworthy than entertaining.

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9 hours ago, Bruinsfan said:

To be honest, I might not mind that happening if it means that the movie doesn't turn out to be Quick Sheldon. As much as I love Miller, I found far more of his performance cringeworthy than entertaining.

Same. I feel like he was trying to be Tom Holland, and failed miserably. And I've been rooting for Ezra since his turn in Perks of Being A Wallflower. (His bit part in Trainwreck was HYSTERICAL.)

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As the old folks in my neighborhood growing up used to say about the less intellectually gifted, "Those boys could fuck up a wet dream."

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Boo to Wonder Woman getting pushed back.

While watching Suicide Squad last night, I realized that Amanda Waller is basically the General Ross of DC. All the griping of Superman's potential as a threat, and yet she caused a ton of damage with Enchantress all because of her bright idea of using a team of bad guys. And like Ross, she got zero fallout from her actions -- because Batfleck covered her ass. Yet another reason to dislike him.

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I actually don't mind WW1984 getting pushed back; I think it'll work better as a summer movie and I was concerned about what felt like a huge RUSH to get it out because the DCEU was so desperate for a win. As long as it will make for a better movie, it's fine with me!

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As long as it's Patty Jenkins in charge of it rather than a revolving door of directors, I'm sure it will turn out enjoyable. Maybe extra time will allow the effects houses to make the climactic battle look real rather than like a video game screen. (Hopefully Gal Gadot doesn't have any projects that require a mustache they'll need to paint over at the last minute...)

Edited by Bruinsfan.
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On 10/22/2018 at 2:14 PM, MarkHB said:

Wonder Woman 1984 is moving 6 months down, to June 2020 :

 

This is a strategic move. Marvel recently announced that they'd be moving a film from its intended July 2020 release.

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It is super-weird to me that in a little over a year, we'll be able to say we live in the 20's. We'll be back to defined decade names again.

Anyway, good for Zachary Levi. I hope the movie winds up fun.

Edited by methodwriter85.
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Cathy Yan spoke about Birds of Prey at the US-China Entertainment Summit in LA:

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“I could not put the script down, it had so much dark humor to it which a lot of my work does, and there are themes of female empowerment which are so strong  and relateable. So I went in with, not with confidence, but at least a sense that I belonged in the room, that somehow magically in terms of timing and luck that this opportunity was open to me and I was definitely going to make the best of it.”

She also confirmed that they're going for an R rating.

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I suspect there are a ton of Snyder diehards who will look at this piece and conclude that "the Snyder cut" would have been superior to the theatrical release. However, given WB's mandate that the film be no longer than 2 hours, no longer be a set up for a sequel, and just feel lighter, Snyder was going to have to cut a number of sections too, including the backstories for Cyborg, Flash, and Aquaman. There was no place for Darkseid in the final film regardless of who had directed and edited it. The "Knightmare" didn't work in Batman v Superman; it probably wouldn't have worked in Justice League.

The original design for Steppenwolf was terrible; the final one isn't great either. While the opening scene with Superman isn't great, I get what Whedon was attempting to do with it. If the entire premise of the Justice League film is that Superman is a person to be admired and inspired by, you have to at least attempt to show him as a decent relatable person. Additionally, an extended sequence with a feral resurrected Superman undermines this premise. Finally, having Batman learn about parademons from reading through Lex Luthor's research honestly makes Batman seem like a lazy imbecile.

I don't think Whedon's execution was great. But given the corporate mandates about the theatrical release, Snyder was likely to turn in a final version as deeply flawed as what we got.

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A lot of stuff Whedon added/substituted wasn't that great, but I'd definitely take it over more Lex Luthor, or angry violent Superman.

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On 11/18/2018 at 4:10 PM, HunterHunted said:

I suspect there are a ton of Snyder diehards who will look at this piece and conclude that "the Snyder cut" would have been superior to the theatrical release. However, given WB's mandate that the film be no longer than 2 hours, no longer be a set up for a sequel, and just feel lighter, Snyder was going to have to cut a number of sections too, including the backstories for Cyborg, Flash, and Aquaman. There was no place for Darkseid in the final film regardless of who had directed and edited it. The "Knightmare" didn't work in Batman v Superman; it probably wouldn't have worked in Justice League.

I'm not a general "Snyder diehard," but I am someone who loved MoS and BvS and felt that Justice League, while an enjoyable enough film on its own, was a poor followup to the first two.  Having said that, I don't lay the entirety of the blame for the failings of JL on Joss Whedon; a large chunk of it goes to WB management for that 2 hour mandate, and that is also something I hope would be corrected if the "Snyder cut" were ever to see the light of day in any form.

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I'd argue that a pure Snyder or pure Whedon movie would have been better than the mix and match we got.  However, it was abundantly clear that the majority of the public was not on board with Snyder's vision so while his fans likely would have been happy it's still probable the film would have been a box office disappointment.  Snyder had a particular idea and if WB was really opposed to it they should have just canned him rather than trying to force him to film the opposite of what he wanted. 

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‘Blue Beetle’ Movie in the Works at DC, Warner Bros

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DC and Warner Bros. are developing the superhero movie “Blue Beetle,” based on the Mexican-American comic book character Jaime Reyes.

The studio has tapped Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer, who wrote Universal’s “Scarface” remake, to pen the “Blue Beetle” screenplay. Zev Foreman is executive producing the film for Warner Bros.

The original Blue Beetle character, which debuted in 1939, had superpowers derived from a sacred scarab. He first manifested himself as Dan Garrett, a police officer who fought crime with superpowers. The second version of Blue Beetle was Ted Kord, Garrett’s student who continued costumed crime-fighting, but had no superpowers.

Reyes was created by Keith Giffen, John Rogers, and Cully Hamner, and made his first appearance in a 2006 comic, when he discovered the Blue Beetle scarab — which came alive, grafted itself to the base of his spine, and provided him with a suit of extraterrestrial armor. Reyes worked with Kord’s former teammate and best friend, Booster Gold, and was inducted into the Teen Titans. The “Blue Beetle” series of comic books was launched in 2011 and canceled after 17 issues in 2013.

Edited by Dee.
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Wasn't there a Blue Beetle/Booster Gold film in development a while ago? I swear this isn't the first I've heard of a Blue Beetle film.

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There was talk about the Ted Kord Blue Beetle being a movie a few years ago but that was the only information anyone had.

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I have read rumors (and I'm in the opposite corner of the country from Hollywood and don't actually know anything about anything) that Charlton may not have properly secured the live-action TV and movie rights from their creators when they originally signed the contracts, and if that's the case then DC couldn't have bought rights Charlton didn't possess.  That would impact not only Ted Kord and his predecessor Blue Beetle, but also the Question, Captain Atom, and the other characters the Watchmen were loosely based on, and would also help explain why Ray Palmer's character in the Arrowverse (particularly when he first appeared on Arrow) is essentially Ted Kord with an Atom suit.

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Official Post

This thread is specifically for discussion of DC movies, not television shows; unlike Marvel, DC TV shows and films do not claim to be in the same universe, and in fact outside the CW most of the TV shows exist in separate universes.  Most if not all of the DC shows that are airing or in production, including Swamp Thing and Stargirl, have their own forums; please discuss them there.

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