In a new interview with Vulture, Geoff Johns and Diane Nelson talked about how DC films and Warner Bros. will move forward following Wonder Woman. Wonder Woman was the most successful film in the DC Extended Universe. It’s final tab at the box office was just shy of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’s gross worldwide but it was a critical darling. Director Patty Jenkins boosted DC’s status in the eyes of critics and many fans. And with Wonder Woman’s success Warner Bros. will be focusing on individual stories and not a cinematic universe.
Johns’ details just how this will affect the upcoming Aquaman film.
Some of the movies do connect the characters together, like Justice League. But, like with Aquaman…our goal is not to connect Aquaman to every movie.
Diane Nelson talks about giving creative control back to filmmakers.
Moving forward, you’ll see the DC movie universe being a universe, but one that comes from the heart of the filmmaker who’s creating them.
Now, that’s more like it. Warner Bros., as a studio, has always had confidence in their directors, almost to a fault.
Zack Snyder’s control over the DCEU stemmed from his having been Christopher Nolan’s and Warner Bros. choice for Man of Steel. However, a cinematic universe wasn’t their first plan when talking about a sequel. Warner Bros. had even purchased several URL addresses for a sequel using the Man of Steel title. But Snyder always wanted to work with Batman, and he seized the opportunity.
He pitched DC a sequel that pitted the two superhero behemoths against each other. The studio then jumped at the idea, and suddenly Snyder was the Godfather of the DCEU.
From then on it’s been a crapshoot. Whether Suicide Squad was affected by studio-controlled reshoots, or Ayer’s famous “6 week” script, is unknown. What is known is the film was a tonal mess, and audiences and critics noticed. Wonder Woman followed that up successfully, but the future is still unsure.
We don’t know much about just what films in the DC slate are completely confirmed. They seem to be tackling their films one at a time. In fact, it’s been recently discovered the DCEU moniker was fabricated by an Entertainment Weekly reporter in 2015. Writer Keither Staskiewicz coined the term, when in actuality they’re company title is DC Films. As it turns out, there’s a lot of misinformation coming from Warner Bros., and they know it.
The studio has often been hampered by leaks and rumors, Johns reveals:
When we talk about things or we’re making deals for people to develop scripts or whatever, sometimes, things leak; sometimes, things are misreported, and it’s frustrating. Because we do wanna go out there and talk about what our strategy is, and this stuff just muddies the water. There’s a lot of internal conversations going on about, How do we help kind of clean that up a bit?
It’s a troubling notion for any major studio. That secrets and script ideas could be leaking to multiple sources, thus spoiling future films. But Johns is missing one key detail.
Getting Their Act Together
Warner Bros. is only recently getting their act together in regards to DC. If workers or employees were leaking ideas, it’s because of one reason: their lack of confidence in the studio. Much like political administrations, the more ridiculous the administration the more likely employees will be on the inside looking out. They know they’re living a story and they need to share it, to emphasize just whose incompetence is leading the fleet. For the last few years that’s been our perception of the DC Films unit at WB.
Not every aspect of the films have been abysmal so far, but the highlights are few and far between. But now that Diane Nelson and Geoff Johns have power and sway DC looks to be heading in the right direction.
Back To The Basics
Any comic fan knows Geoff Johns. He’s a masterful storyteller in his own right, having written literally hundreds of them. He knows what makes DC superheroes special, and he’ll make sure we do too.
The iconography and the representation of the ideals they embody mean so much to people…The iconography and the representation of the ideals they embody mean so much to people.
This is a man who knows Superman. Despite only a short time on the title, Johns already seems like the man to make us believe again. Believe that our favorite superheroes can embody the ideals we know and love. That we can watch them smile and save, instead of brood and fight.
That we can sit down as an audience, with a couple bites of popcorn, and watch our dreams come true.