DC Extended Universe: Here Is Every Film Currently In Development

– by Joseph Medina

We recently ran a story here that walked through every X-Men film currently development. While we think that one is all well and good for keeping that universe straight, the real beast here is the DC Extended Universe. A few years back, Warner Bros announced an ambitious slate that consisted of nine films. Here’s how they were presented, and when they were supposed to hit:

As of this writing, the first four films are are on track to meet their release dates, but everything after that is a huge question mark. Since the release of Batman v Superman last year, Warner Bros seems to have been in a reactionary mode. They created the new DC Films division at the studio, and have seemingly added a host of new films to the docket, all the while seemingly ignoring a couple others on it.

This begs the question of what the status is of every film they’ve mentioned over the past few years. As mentioned before, Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad, Wonder Woman, and Justice League are all either released or on schedule to meet their initial date, so we’re going to ignore those ones and move on to the good stuff.

Also of note. Unless the studio has gone out and actively changed the release date of one of their movies, we'll be keeping their announced ones as is.


AQUAMAN
RELEASE DATE: OCTOBER 5, 2018


Aquaman seems to be on pretty steady ground. Despite the fact that it’s a film based on a superhero the mainstream may not shine to right away, it’s seemed to have a pretty smooth development. Warner Bros had two separate writers pen two different scripts, but when director James Wan was brought on board, he and DC Entertainment president Geoff Johns wrote a treatment that was turned into a script by Will Beall. The cast as has rounded out with the likes of Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson, and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, and despite a delay from July to October, it seems as though there’s very little drama or reason for concern behind it.


BLACK ADAM
RELEASE DATE: UNKNOWN


Back in 2014, Dwayne Johnson was cast as the anti-hero Black Adam. Given that Black Adam is sort of a big villain for Shazam, it seemed a bit backwards that Warner Bros would opt to cast him before they cast a Shazam. However, given the weight that is behind Johnson’s name as an actor, and the fact that Warner Bros was still trying to sell the idea of a DC Universe to reporters and audiences, it was understandable (though still backwards).

However, last January, it was announced that Black Adam would be getting his own feature film, with Johnson still attached to star. There are no details as to its release date, but it is reportedly being developed concurrently with Shazam.


SHAZAM
RELEASE DATE: APRIL 5, 2019 (SUPPOSEDLY)


For a while, it seemed like Shazam was one of the forgotten stepchildren of the DC Extended Universe. He is likely the least known in the group (perhaps maybe only on par with Cyborg). Additionally, it’s a movie that Dwayne Johnson’s production company has been deeply involved with, and is being distributed under the umbrella of New Line Cinema, a subsidiary of Warner Bros. This whole thing seemed to pull it right out of the slate with the rest of them.

However, despite the sparse information surrounding this title, it seems to be clear of most of the drama that’s plagued the rest of these movies. In January of this year, a reported stated that Earth to Echo writer Henry Gayden was the screenwriter for the project. In February of this year, it was reported that Lights Out director David F. Sanberg was in talks to helm the film, but no follow-up report has been made.


CYBORG
RELEASE DATE: APRIL 3, 2020 (SUPPOSEDLY)


This one seems to be a big question mark for this universe. Now, ever since the film was announced with its April 2020 release date, nothing has been said about it. For all we know, it could still be on track to hit with no problems. However, given the number of films that have been announced since then (The Batman, Black Adam, Suicide Squad 2, Man of Steel 2, Nightwing, Gotham City Sirens), one has to wonder if there is a place for a standalone Cyborg film when Warner is having a hard enough time landing the films for the core members of the Justice League.

As of right now, there is no reports of this one leaving its initial date, but we wouldn’t be surprised if this one sort of just fades away.


GREEN LANTERN CORPS
RELEASE DATE: JULY 24, 2020


This film was initially announced as a standard Green Lantern film, and following the announcement, there was plenty of speculation that it would try an distance itself as much as possible from the 2011 Ryan Reynolds-led Green Lantern film. Apart from random reports regarding which Green Lanterns could be in the film, little was said until January 2017, when it was announced that David S. Goyer and Justin Rhodes would be writing the script. The script was based on a draft from Goyer and Geoff Johns.

Given the recognizability of the character Green Lantern, it seems likely this one will stick around, but as to whether or not it will keep its July 24, 2020 date is up in the air. However, like with Cyborg, nothing has been said to make us think it won’t hit that date as of yet, and we’re far enough away that it’s still more than possible.


THE FLASH
RELEASE DATE: UNKNOWN


It has been one hell of a rollercoaster ride for The Flash. The film started off promising enough. Not only did it already have its lead in Ezra Miller, but Seth Grahame-Smith had signed on as both writer and director of the film, with the screenplay being based on a treatment by Phil Lord and Chris Miller. In April of 2016, Grahame-Smith left due to creative differences, and a few months later in June, Rick Famuyiwa signed on to replace him. 

Considering how great Famuyiwa’s Dope turned out, many fans actually saw this as a bit of an upgrade, as Grahame-Smith was still something of an unproven entity. However, in October, Famuyiwa also left due to creative differences, leaving the prospect of it making its 2018 release date kind of a questionable deal. 

Currently, the film is facing a page-one rewrite from Joby Harold, and it has no way of hitting that 2018 release date. It’s unclear how far back the film will be pushed.


THE BATMAN
RELEASE DATE: UNANNOUNCED


This is a film that makes The Flash’s rollercoaster ride look quaint in comparison. The Batman was a film that many fans were looking forward to for good reason. Ben Affleck’s portrayal of the Batman was one of the best parts of Batman v Superman. Even those who disliked the movies generally agreed he was a pretty great Batman. Additionally, Affleck was the director of a Best Picture-winning film (Argo), and with him on board to helm the project, it seemed like it was destined for greatness.

As was reported in-depth on this site, Affleck spent the better part of 2016 seemingly trying to distance himself from the film, saying that the film wasn’t one hundred percent happening yet, and at the end of January 2017, he stepped down as director. After some heated negotiations, War for the Planet of the Apes director Matt Reeves officially signed on to the project.

No release date has been set for the film, but there were rumors that it was shooting for an early 2018 release date for the longest time. With Reeves now at the helm, it’s likely that the script will need another rewrite, so there’s no telling when this could get off the ground, but a 2019 release date seems likely, perhaps taking the slot that Justice League 2 originally had.


JUSTICE LEAGUE 2
RELEASE DATE: UNKNOWN


The film was first announced back with the entire slate, and following the release of Batman v Superman, it seemed to sort of fade into the background. While this is mostly speculation, it seemed like Warner Bros seemed to regret hitching their wagon to Zack Snyder, and wanted to reduce their commitment to him. With this film now up in the air, they seemed to have no obligation to continue on with him.

Last December, it was reported that Snyder would be refocusing his attention to a thriller called The Last Photograph rather than Justice League 2, potentially paving the way for The Batman


GOTHAM CITY SIRENS
RELEASE DATE: UNANNOUNCED


While not everyone love Suicide Squad, there were few who found fault in Margot Robbie’s interpretation of Harley Quinn, and despite all the rumors surrounding the re-edits of the film (with as many as seven different cuts of the film reportedly being created). In May of last year, it was revealed that Robbie was heading into a producing role, with a Harley Quinn-centric being one of the projects she was spearheading.

In December, it was revealed that Suicide Squad director David Ayer would be helming the picture. The screenplay was reportedly written by Geneva Robertson-Dworet.


SUICIDE SQUAD 2
RELEASE DATE: UNANNOUNCED


In the same report it was announced that David Ayer would be reteaming with Margot Robbie for Gotham City Sirens, it was stated that despite this offshoot, a Suicide Squad 2 was in development. A couple months later, in February of 2017, Mel Gibson confirmed that he was in early discussions regarding the sequel. Also rumored to be in talks to helm the anti-hero sequel were Jonathan Levine, Ruben Fleischer, and Daniel Espinosa.


MAN OF STEEL 2
RELEASE DATE: UNANNOUNCED


Following the relesae of Batman v Superman, in August, a report from TheWrap stated that it was a priority to the studio to get the character of Superman right, and the following month (in September), Henry Cavill’s manager stated that the actor would be acting as producer for the movie, thought it was unclear when they’d planned on releasing the film.

This past Monday, it was reported that Kingsman director Matthew Vaughn was being eyed to direct the film. If he hops on board the film, there’s a good chance this one will get fastracked into production.


JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK/DARK UNIVERSE
RELEASE DATE: UNANNOUNCED


This one has had a winding road of development that begins with Guillermo del Toro a few years back. It was one of the many projects that the filmmaker was involved with for the longest time, and he’d spent so long on it, that few thought he would actually be able to go through with it. Very little was said about this film in an official capacity after del Toro’s departure in June of 2015, but as recently as last August, it was reported that Doug Liman was on board to direct the flick.

There’s still no word on whether or not this film would be set in the same DC Universe, and given how crowded the slate it, it seems to be a strange prospect. But considering the success of Suicide Squad, it wouldn’t be completely unheard of to have a separate band of darker heroes in this same world.


DEADSHOT
RELEASE DATE: UNANNOUNCED


In the same report that announced Gotham City Sirens, it was also stated that a Deadshot film was in development. There were no other details in the report, and there have been no other details since then. Considering how well received Will Smith’s interpretation of the character was, though, Warner could follow worse characters.


NIGHTWING
RELEASE DATE: UNANNOUNCED


On February 23, 2017, it was announced that Chris McKay, director of The LEGO Batman Movie, was in negotiations to direct a film based on the character of Nightwing (a.k.a. Dick Grayson). In talks to write the script was The Accountant director Bill Dubuque. There’s no word yet on how this character will fit into the overall DC Extended Universe, but given Mckay’s obviously extensive knowledge of Batman’s lore, he seems like a solid pick for the film.


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