There’s a new King in Town

According to a report by Variety, Walter Hamada will replace Jon Berg and Geoff Johns as President of DC Films. The decision was made to remove producer Jon Berg and DC Veteran Geoff Johns in December following the lackluster performance of Justice League. Hamada’s name is surprising. He’s a successful producer, but nothing in his filmography screams “Head of a Film Comics Department.” But one thing does stand out.

His relationship with James Wan.

The Conjuring may be Hamada’s biggest credit. It was a massive hit, but Wan’s original horror flick spawned an entire Universe with four films released in as many years. Two of which were directed by Wan himself, and are excellent examples of modern horror. Well, between those films Wan also managed to direct an Insidious sequel and Furious 7. Wan is also behind the wheel of this year’s AquamanHamada executive produced every one of The Conjuring films, the Annabelle spin-offs and David F. Sandberg’s film Lights Out. Sandberg just so happens to be the man behind Shazam! Almost every one of Hamada’s credits is a horror film.

It’s important to note that the films he supervised were ones that had successful filmmakers behind them. But an Executive Producer’s role is typically one based around finance or influence. Considering the promotion, it’s most likely the latter for Hamada. There’s a chance he’s the reason Wan directed The Conjuring in the first place. He could also be the reason Warner Bros. optioned Sandberg’s short films, leading to Lights Out. He could also be the reason that Andrés Muschietti directed the It film.

If even one of those things are true, Hamada has helped create an incredible horror division over at Warner Bros. Looks like they’re hoping he’ll work his magic once again.

Out with the Old, in the with New

James Wan and Walter Hamada

James Wan and Walter Hamada attend the premiere of “Lights Out” during the 2016 Los Angeles Film Festival at Arclight Cinemas Culver City on June 8, 2016 in Culver City, California.

Jon Berg has been around for some time. But his name isn’t quite as synonymous with DC as Geoff Johns. It’s disappointing to hear that he won’t be in the position he more than deserved to be in. Justice League’s failure can hardly be attributed to him. If anything, Johns is partially to thank for the success that is Wonder Woman. He’s remaining at DC in an advisory role, but the writing on the wall is clear.

Obviously, Warner Bros. is looking for their own Kevin Feige. Most people thought they’d found that in Geoff Johns. Not long ago it was announced that he only had to report to the parent studio effectively making him DC’s answer to Marvel Studios’ Feige. But that wasn’t even three months ago. What kind of difference could three months make?

Well, it would see the release and subsequent failure of DC’s biggest blockbuster yet. The Universe’s biggest star, Ben Affleck, is completely up in the air. Despite expressing his desire to still helm a Batman film someday. So the one thing that’s been clear about DC’s universe is that not much is clear. Except that a Shazam and a Wonder Woman sequel are coming after next year’s Aquaman. 

Walter Hamada has accepted what could be an amazing job, but also a daunting task. If the newly-minted President of DC Films truly has the Midas touch than Warner Bros. may have struck gold.

  • About The Author

    Daniel Mills
    Batman & DC Writer

    Daniel Mills is a screenwriter and director working in Los Angeles, California. Far too many comics and Forgotten Realms-novels led him to want to tell stories of his own. From articles and opinion pieces to reviews and screenplays, he sees every new opportunity as another new realm waiting to be explored.