There has been a lot of speculation of what new DC Studio CEOs James Gunn and Peter Safran's new visions for DC films will be, and it looks like we're starting to get a sneak peek. December 14's news that Henry Cavill will not be returning as Superman and the news from earlier this week that Patty Jenkins' third Wonder Woman movie will not be moving forward, seems to signal the end of new DCEU projects and a look towards a completely fresh future for DC movies, including a new young Superman film penned by James Gunn himself.
The new Superman project, and the news that Henry Cavill will not star in it, was shared Thursday by James Gunn in a Twitter thread. This news was announced only a month and a half after, close to the release of Black Adam which featured a cameo of Henry Cavill as Superman, Cavill posted on social media announcing that he would return to his role as Superman. Unfortunately, that announcement was not very long lived.
Among those on the slate is Superman. In the initial stages, our story will be focusing on an earlier part of Superman's life, so the character will not be played by Henry Cavill.— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) December 15, 2022
In his Twitter thread, Gunn shared that part of the new DC slate, which he will share more details about in the new year, will be a Superman film. This movie will focus on Superman at a younger point of his life, and the screenplay is currently being written by Gunn, though no director is currently attached.
Cavill followed Gunn's annoucement with an announcement of his own on Instagram, saying "this news isn't the easiest, but that's life."
With Cavill no longer playing Superman and the third Wonder Woman film no longer moving forward, it looks like Gunn and Safran's plans for their multi-format, multi-platform "new DCU" will be leaving the DCEU behind completely and starting over with a blank slate, perhaps with a focus on younger heroes, if we're taking the younger Superman movie as the promise of a trend.
But the DCEU isn't completely kaput yet. Before we get to that "Biggest Story Ever Told" Gunn has promised, the DCEU as it is still has an entire year of movies on its release schedule, with Shazam: Fury of the Gods releasing on March 17, 2023, Flash on June 16, 2023, Blue Beetle on August 18, 2023, and Aquaman and the Last Kingdom on December 25, 2023. Though, I think, we can assume, due to all of the recent developments, that these will likely be the final movies in the DCEU.
One last interesting tidbit of note-- in Gunn's Twitter thread, he mentioned that he had a meeting with Ben Affleck about directing a future DC film. "Met with Ben yesterday precisely because he wants to direct & we want him to direct; we just have to find the right project." So while the DCEU may be done with new films, maybe some of its players might stick around to contribute in new ways to the future DC slate.
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