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Wrath of the Gods Is the End of DC Movies As We Know Them – The Hollywood Reporter


The dawn of a new DC Universe is approaching, as James Gunn and Peter Safran plan a new batch of film, TV, and game projects. But before we get there, we’ve got nine months of what feels like the final moments of the DCEU, which is drawing to a close, almost poetically, a decade after it debuted with man of steel in the year 2013.

The first out of the gate is David F. Sandberg Shazam! Wrath of the Godsthe sequel to Shazam! (2019), which proved to be a modestly sized hit and was considered another course-correcting step in the right direction for the DC series, and a third to be exact, but who’s counting? Some critics have even referred to it as the best DCEU movie to date. The sequel should, in theory, be a major draw as the opening shot to the three other DC films due out this year, the lightAnd blue beetleAnd Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. So why does it feel like the DCEU is heading towards a conclusion instead of culminating in a celebration of a decade of storytelling?

Early reactions to social media on Wrath of the Gods It was enthusiastic and positive, while the reviews were relatively positive, if softer than the original. But box office projections point to a less enthusiastic opening. Certainly, aware of the numbers the film is facing, Warner Bros. marketing has become aware of the numbers. And New Line’s film desperately pleads to “come see,” as the TV spots spoil the veil of the big movie that somehow feels sadder than ever. Black Adam Superstar Dwayne Johnson unveils Henry Cavill’s Superman cameo while pressing on the red carpet.

For anything this Wrath of the Gods Who stands in the way of being a lightning arrester? Well, it has to do with a number of factors. While the sequel has no shortage of talent, it did bring in Helen Mirren, Lucy Liu, and Rachel Ziegler as antagonists. They play the daughters of Atlas – Hespera, Calypso, and Anthea, respectively, characters who are not from the comics. This makes it somewhat more difficult in terms of marketing and pointing audiences to specific comic books they can refer to and get excited about. The second issue is that Shazam’s most famous antagonist, Black Adam, was given a solo movie, which failed at the box office last year, and thundered away any potential for the Shazam vs. Black Adam matchup that movie audiences had been hoping for since the movies were. announce. But the biggest boulder stands in the way Wrath of the Gods Is that with a new DC cinematic universe, what are audiences being asked to invest in?

Now, you could argue that the merits of a movie should be viewed individually, not in terms of its setting, or post-credit scenes that may never come to fruition in another movie. In fact, this is what I would argue myself. Watch the movie for the movie’s sake, not for how well it does as a trailer. But I think, if we’re being realistic, that’s not how people watch these movies, at least not quite. A Shazam movie that holds the guaranteed promise of clashing with Black Adam or a character joining the Justice League simply plays with audiences differently than a Shazam movie that teases the return of Sivana and the Monster Society of Evil in a movie that doesn’t seem like it. It is likely to be made. It shouldn’t be like this, but it is. Already, social media chatter has returned to the same question about the pre-reboot movies, “What’s even the point?” The point is to see a good movie, but I don’t know if that’s enough of it to be a convincing argument for a franchise, at least critically, but not for me personally, it has more hits than misses.

While DC Films’ new co-president James Gunn has said everything is on the table for a continuation in the DCU, and Shazam!It, at least the first movie, doesn’t contain any continuity-breaking references, everything seems a bit muddy in interpretation to fans who’ve been told a reboot, with a new Batman and Superman, is coming. Words like “soft reboot” with items Suicide Squad And peace maker Grandpa is in, disposable, and that may be the case, but that means nothing to general audiences who have grown up with MCU films highlighting one continuity where “everything counts,” despite it being a marketing ploy. But it’s a hoax that people believe in, and that’s something Warner Bros. doesn’t have. Discovery in terms of the current slate of DC films, which between frequent leadership shifts, the divisive nature of the films, actors unsure about the future as such characters, and the entire Batgirl movie being delayed, the current situation has taken on the attitude of, “Eh, we don’t really know if It was still important.”

Gunn ads about Chapter 1: Gods and MonstersThe beginning of the DCU, it’s certainly been exciting and in general, it’s made a lot of people a lot more optimistic about DC’s future onscreen, outside of the Batman movies, than they’ve been in a long time. But the announcement appears to come at the expense of films already scheduled for release that fall outside the scope of this. It reminds us of the time of the 20’sy Century Fox released Dark Phoenix And New Mutants After the Disney merger, everyone was already expecting a rebooted MCU version of the mutants. And sure, we can hope that the quality of the DCEU movies this year will outpace theirs, but if they’re marketed Wrath of the Godswhich hasn’t even played a spot in the Super Bowl is any indication of what we can expect for the rest of 2023 then it looks like the WBD is already counting their losses and really hoping Michael Keaton comes back where Batman can pay the light to a billion.

There’s a lack of clarity as to how these DCEU films connect to Gunn and co-chair Peter Safran’s DCU, if anything, and a wait-and-see approach might make the most sense but it’s also not selling tickets. Wrath of the Gods He was due to come out next the lightAnd Sandberg recently gave that as the reason for the costume change in the movie, which has now been changed simply by magic. It’s not a big issue. But when you think about it the light It was originally going to lead to some of the changes seen in Wrath of the Gods And Aquaman and the Lost Kingdomwith the now-deleted cameos referring to those events, it looks like comic book event issues have been shuffled and pages removed.

similarly, the lightThe next movie set for release will reportedly serve as a conclusion to the DCEU and the establishment of the DCU. And that would be fine if it wasn’t followed through immediately blue beetleThat is supposed to launch a new franchise and Aquaman The sequel, which was supposed to be the second chapter in the trilogy. Oh, and by the way, it’s possible that Jason Momoa will play a different character in the DCU, but according to Peter Safran, he won’t be playing two different characters, which contradicts Momoa’s statement that he will always be Aquaman. So what we have is the end of a cinematic universe and a new universe being born simultaneously that could potentially use pieces of one ending if it looks financially viable, which is a pretty complex crunch for comics fans.

It would be great to see the success of these 2023 DC movies, both financially and critically, perhaps Wrath of the Gods It will beat expectations and show audiences are still invested in these movies despite the reboot in the wings. But I think there should be some clarity about where these franchises stand in terms of the DCU. If the plan is to end it here, within the confines of the DCEU, then I think audiences deserve definitive conclusions and a logical transition, like the light Being an actual finale and leading to a reboot rather than the DCEU ending with the Aquaman sequel raising the third installment that the studio isn’t actually planning on making. Whether you’re a DCU fanatic or not, I think the actors and directors who have contributed to a decade of stories set in the DCEU deserve at least clarity and nobility as they deliver this latest chapter.

Joanna Swanson

Joanna Swanson is Europe correspondent at the Thomson Reuters Foundation based in Brussels covering politics, culture, business, climate change, society, economies and inclusive tech. With specific focus in breaking news, she has covered some of the world's most significant stories.