James Gunn Reveals New DC Slate: New Batman, Superman, Supergirl Films, a Green Lantern Series & More
The future of DC Studios has been revealed.
DC Studios bosses James Gunn and Peter Safran have unveiled their ten-year plan for the connected superhero universe they’re building. Hold onto your capes, people.
First, there will be a new Batman film (without Robert Pattinson) featuring Bruce Wayne’s very dangerous son. But don’t worry, fans of The Batman—a sequel to Matt Reeves and Robert Pattinson’s film is still happening. There’s going to be a new Superman film, written by Gunn, and headed to theaters on July 11, 2025. There’s going to be a new TV series set on Wonder Woman’s secretive home island Themyscira that’s being billed as a Game of Thrones-like epic. For those of you heavily invested in the Marvel and DC superhero universes, this is about as big of a news day as you could conceive.
Gunn and Safran have been plotting their unified DC universe for months now. The news that Henry Cavill would not be returning as Superman and that Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman 3 was also not a part of the plan shook up the DC world. Now, at last, we have a much clearer picture of what kind of world—connected universe, technically—that Gunn and Safran have conceived of, and it’s wild. Yes, some of the blue-chip superheroes will be here, your Batman and your Superman, but there’s also a slew of more marginal figures within the DC canon that are going to get their day in the spotlight.
The Hollywood Reporter and many other outlets report that their phased plan begins with Chapter 1: Gods and Monsters, and has been dreamed into life by a writer’s room that helped locate an overarching story to create a proper, unified DC Universe. Gunn and Safran laid out the first part of their overall vision for DC on the Warner Bros. lot:
“One of our strategies is to take our diamond characters, which is Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and we use them to prop up other characters that people don’t know,” said Gunn.
“To build those lesser-known properties into the diamond properties of tomorrow,” Safran added.
One of those lesser-known properties is Creature Commandos, which is an animated series written by Gunn that’s already in production. Gunn’s version is a modern take on a team of monsters who team up to fight Nazis. A second television project is Waller, which will be a spinoff of Gunn’s series Peacemaker and feature the return of Viola Davis as the titular Amanda Waller, the take-no-prisoners government taskforce captain who created the Suicide Squad.
Then, there are the big film reveals, like Superman: Legacy, which is also being penned by Gunn (he may also direct) and is considered the project that is officially launching the new DC Universe. Safran told the assembled reporters at the unveiling that the film is not an origin story, but rather “focuses on Superman balancing his Kryptonian heritage with his human upbringing. He is the embodiment of truth justice and the American way. He is kindness in a world that thinks that kindness as old-fashioned.” Again, the film is slated for a July 11, 2025 release date.
Then there’s Lanterns, a new TV series based on the space cop Green Lanterns that Gunn and Safran billed as a True Detective-like drama that will be based on Earth and feature Lantern heroes John Stewart and Hal Jordan.
Another film project is The Authority, focused on a team of superheroes who deploy extreme methods to protect the planet. The characters were created by the influential comic imprint Wildstorm in the late 1990s. “One of the things of the DCU is that it’s not just a story of heroes and villains,” Gunn said. “Not every film and TV show is going to be about good guy vs. bad guy, giant things from the sky comes and good guy wins. There are white hats, black hats and grey hats.”
“They are kinda like Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men,” Safran said. “They know that you want them on the wall. Or at least they believe that.”
Paradise Lost will be the TV series set on Themyscira, Wonder Woman’s birthplace, that’s being billed as a Game of Thrones-style epic.
The Brave and the Bold movie will be the introduction of a new Batman. “This is the introduction of the DCU Batman,” Gunn said. “Of Bruce Wayne and also introduces our favorite Robin, Damian Wayne, who is a little son of a b**ch.” The film is inspired by a classic run of Batman comics by Grant Morrison that revealed Bruce Wayne had a son he never knew existed; a murderous kid raised by assassins. Gunn called it a “very strange father-and-son story.”
The Batman 2 is also coming our way, with Reeves and Pattison reteaming for the sequel. It’s due on October 3, 2025, and the official title is The Batman Part II.
Booster Gold will be a new HBO Max series based on a lesser-known superhero created in 1986.
Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow is another big swing, a film that promises to put a brand new spin on Superman’s famous cousin. “We will see the difference between Superman, who was sent to Earth and raised by loving parents from the time he was an infant, versus Supergirl, raised on a rock, a chip off of Krypton, and who watched everyone around her die and be killed in terrible ways for the first 14 years of her life and then come to Earth,” said Gunn. “She is much more hardcore and not the Supergirl we’re used to.”
And finally, Swamp Thing will find the titular monster returning on the big screen. This is the film that will officially close out Chapter 1: Gods and Monsters.
That’s a lot! Hear the news from James Gunn himself:
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) January 31, 2023
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Featured image: LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 02: James Gunn attends the Warner Bros. premiere of “The Suicide Squad” at Regency Village Theatre on August 02, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images)