James Gunn may buck his trend and hold onto a component of the DCEU that didn’t get a fair shot. Unlike his former co-stars Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck, Joe Manganiello could be granted the opportunity to play Deathstroke again – maybe. Nothing is signed publicly, but there is still a chance that a door or window gets left open.

Screenshot, Joe Manganiello, Deathstroke in ZSJL

Joe Manganiello, Deathstroke in Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021), HBO Max

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YouTuber Syl Abdul stated in a recent update on DC Studio happenings including, but not limited to, Superman: Legacy spoilers that he hears Gunn is likely not inclined to recast Harley Quinn or Deathstroke. In other words, we can possibly expect to see Manganiello return as well as Margot Robbie – a The Suicide Squad star, who has an easy way back in.

The Suicide Squad is ostensibly a soft reboot of the Snyderverse, sharing a lot of the same continuity, and if Gunn keeps his DCU connected to it, then Manganiello’s Deathstroke has a backdoor into the fray also. Should he make the cut, it would be ironic and a redemption as Deathstroke was in early drafts of the semi-sequel’s script.

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Originally, the Terminator was going to return and either fight or lead Task Force X and probably in the place of Bloodsport (Idris Elba) or so the story goes. For whatever reason, Slade Wilson was written out and Manganiello was left out in the cold until Zack Snyder summoned him to finish his version of Justice League.

The Snyder Cut was the last time we saw the Magic Mike actor wear the eye patch in the DCEU, but it wasn’t meant to be his final sighting. He was the villain in Ben Affleck’s script for The Batman, and Warner Bros. may have been secretly reserving for that outing. We know how that turned out.

Deathstroke Vol. 4, 33

Cover: Deathstroke vol.4, Issue #33; DC Comics

Reportedly, Manganiello almost had another chance to bring Slade’s vendetta against the Dark Knight to life. However, that outcome hinged on The Flash’s original ending setting up a few disparate Batman adventures via the Multiverse and a distress call by Batfleck. We know how that one worked out too – not well – but Gunn might be keeping Manganiello’s number in his contacts for the right moment.

We shall see but remember to keep enough salt handy as this story develops.

NEXT: Rumor: Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav Ordered James Gunn To Stack ‘Superman: Legacy’ With More DC Characters To Lure Potential Buyers

  • About The Author

    JB Augustine

    Writer, journalist, comic reader. I cover all things DC and Godzilla. Fan since Batman TAS was brand new. Favorite character is between Swamp Thing and Darkwing Duck.