There’s been a turnaround in his fortunes for the Snyderverse with the coming of Zack Snyder’s Justice League, but things arguably looked a lot brighter for Joe Manganiello’s role as Deathstroke back in 2017.
He had a solo movie lined up with Raid director Gareth Evans attached, plus roles in The Batman when Ben Affleck was in charge of it and even, as we’ve learned in recent weeks, Suicide Squad 2.
The actor explained to Josh Horowitz on the Happy Sad Confused Podcast what it was like having the rug jerked out from him on all those opportunities.
When it came to The Batman, he found out six months after filming the post-credit scene with Jesse Eisenberg they were going in a different direction away from the DCEU.
A little later, he learned that, surprisingly, the studio didn’t have faith in a supervillain-centered spinoff with a restrained budget.
“When the dust settled, it was not seen as a priority to make a $40 million movie about a villain origin story in which you show the backstory,” said Manganiello.
That’s odd when you consider Joker was a $40 million movie about a bad guy that made a bundle. Warner Bros. didn’t have much faith in that idea either – hence why the budget was so low for a comic-book feature.
But Manganiello had the Suicide Squad sequel to look forward to, or so he thought. The project passed through a few directors before ending up with James Gunn, and during that time, they wanted schedules kept clear for Slade Wilson.
“There were four or five different versions of Suicide Squad 2 that I was put on hold for, for dates, waiting for one actor to free up and we were going to go,” the actor said.
He notes this was well before “they re-did the end credits sequence to tease a Justice League 2 Injustice League for the bad guys that didn’t happen, clearly.”
Manganiello is set to return as Slade, now older and ready to die, in the Knightmare portion of The Snyder Cut. If there is more beyond that, he optimistically teases, “I think there’s going to be excitement over continuing what Zack was up to.”
Should recent scoops about Justice League sequels set in Snyder’s continuity prove accurate, Manganiello might turn into a prophet.
What do you make of the shakeup made to Manganiello’s role as Deathstroke? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!