Batman V Superman was almost unanimously panned by critics. Big deal, right? It did great in the box office. Well, sorta. Not nearly as well as it should have. In fact the film lost 69% of its sales in only its second weekend, despite having no major competition. Initially expected to soar over the billion dollar mark worldwide, it now only has a slim chance of reaching $1B. Warner Bros. have stated they aren’t worried, but a report from The Hollywood Reporter is claiming otherwise. The word on the block is that WB plan to sidle back from more homegrown films to spend more time on their tentpole franchises, like Lego, Harry Potter/Fantastic Beasts, and the DC Extended Universe.
What does this mean? Well, let’s put it this way: if Alien or Terminator hadn’t arrived when they did, and had instead shown up around 2017/2018, they might not have been greenlit by the company. But with recent endeavors like Pan and Jupiter Ascending flopping so heavily this past year, it’s no wonder WB is heading down this route.
But to throw all (or most) of your eggs in one basket, that being tentpole franchises, isn’t exactly a great idea. Especially not after the underwhelming success of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. As far as the studios approach to what’s going on with the DCEU in general, in response to its backlash and underperformance, the studio has no plans to drastically shake things up when it comes to the 2-Part Zack Snyder directed Justice League films. They will apparently evaluate what went wrong so that it doesn’t happen again, but when it comes to the Justice League films, they’re taking the stance of “we’re not going to take a movie that’s supposed to be one thing and turn it into a copycat of something else.”
So there you have it. Oh yeah. Suicide Squad is beginning reshoots this week, reportedly because the film wasn’t funny enough. So expect some semblance of levity in that film at least.
And after THR reported that, they subsequently released word that WB has slated two more DC films on top of its already packed slate, clearly showing the world that they refuse to admit to having learned a thing. Wonder Woman‘s release has changed from June 23rd, 2017 to June 2nd. The two untitled DCEU films are set to arrive on October 5th, 2018 and November 1st, 2019.
There is also word of a WB event film arriving on Oct 6, 2017 (a month prior to Justice League Part 1), perhaps to, I dunno, help us get to understand what’s happening better. As far as what the two untitled DCEU films are? The most obvious guesses are that one will likely be a Man of Steel sequel, and the other a solo Batman flick. There have been talks about Affleck working on a script for a solo film, which could be quite interesting. Also, Superman turns 80 in 2018, and Batman in 2019. Coincidence‽
But why? Was any of this necessary? Was any of this handled correctly? I’m honestly at a loss for words. This seems like a terrible business plan to me, but what do I know? I just live here.