In a move that makes absolutely perfect sense so it should be of no surprise IF proven true, Warner Bros. has reportedly put into motion a bulletproof plan for its troubled big screen version of Justice League that will team the collective forces behind The Dark Knight trilogy and the upcoming Man of Steel.
After a lengthy investigation, El Mayimbe over at Latino Review broke the big news last night, which was also backed up by Batman-On-Film, that Warners has finally and wisely handed the reigns of its big screen DC Universe over to Dark Knight mastermind Christopher Nolan. Nolan not only steered his Batman trilogy to critical acclaim and billions at the box office, he also oversaw production of the upcoming reboot of Superman, Man of Steel, starring Henry Cavill and directed by Zack Snyder.
If you allow yourself to believe the positive online buzz from a recent pre-screening, WB is apparently over the roof at what they have on their hands with Man of Steel. With their multiple stalled attempts over the years at bringing Justice League to the big screen, and with both Batman star Christian Bale and Chris Nolan having retired from that franchise after The Dark Knight Rises, Warner Bros. is left with only Man of Steel (and possibly 2011’s failed Green Lantern) as anchor points for DC’s answer to Marvel’s The Avengers. Recent reports also point to the studio’s disappointment and subsequent scrapping of the latest Justice League script penned by Gangster Squad‘s Will Beall.
According to Latino Review, Bale is now being courted to don the cape and cowl again, despite the closure seen in The Dark Knight Rises and his reluctance to participate in the proposed team-up film unless Nolan can convince him otherwise. WB’s previous plan was to introduce the next big screen Caped Crusader in 2015’s Justice League and then use that as a springboard to the next series of Batman films. With Nolan on board, its probably the only chance of seeing Bale return to the role.
Man of Steel director Zack Synder is reportedly also to be on board to produce Justice League and most probably first in line to direct (if Nolan doesn’t want to helm it). Unconfirmed to return to this mix is screenwriter David Goyer, who is an integral part of the team as a key writer of the Dark Knight Trilogy and Man of Steel.
Few have doubted Henry Cavill’s Superman as the only sure bet anchor for Justice League from the get go. A major unknown factor that remains regarding Man of Steel is to what extent would it be utilized in setting up the larger big screen DC Universe as Marvel has done by crossing over their big screen heroes in post-credits cameos. With Bale (until now) seemingly out of the loop, a quick generic Batman reference could have been made, or there was the big gamble of passing the cowl to Joseph Gordon-Levitt for a post-credits cameo. While incorporating Levitt would have allowed the Dark Knight continuity to remain intact for Justice League, it would have heavily watered down the Batman character.
For all intents and purposes securing Nolan’s team seems like the best case scenario WB could bank on for Justice League. It appears they are finally done with half assing anything to do with what it takes to make this a guaranteed box office blockbuster. With Cavill and Bale starring, they would have two familiar faces in addition to incorporating The Dark Knight mythos. Ryan Reynolds reprising his role as Green Lantern is still a major x-factor, though it would be silly to think WB does not have him signed to a firm multi-picture deal that would include Justice League. Then figuring out what to do with Wonder Woman and possibly The Flash are whole other issues altogether.
WB is facing a whole new world of tentpole competition. The Disney/Marvel team have had rampant success with their characters, which was cemented by The Avengers’ over $1 billion in worldwide ticket sales in 2012. That remains an open wound to Warners on a sheer business sense as they rapidly lose ground on the superhero battle field. WB also finds itself Harry Potter-less while Disney/Lucasfilm has an unlimited well to tap in addition to Star Wars on deck.
Green Lantern‘s failure at the box office was a huge blow to WB (you could technically go back to 2006’s Superman Returns as the first big set-back), and losing Bale and Nolan left the studio with no choice but to plan a Batman reboot down the line. And frankly any way you look at it, what a thankless task it will be to follow in the footsteps of The Dark Knight trilogy.
Disney has their Joss Whedon / Kevin Feige camp, and added J.J. Abrams to spearhead the next wave of Star Wars films. Even 20th Century Fox has brought writer Mark Millar aboard to properly oversee and intergrade their big screen Marvel properties like X-Men and Fantastic Four. WB still needs a guiding force for these potential tentpoles in the long run, and there are no better ones to retain the services of than their current in-house creative powerhouse team of Nolan and Snyder. The biggest franchises on the big screen are now run behind-the-scenes by A-List filmmakers and the future of the DC heroes is nothing to take lightly or shortchange with a changing of the guard.
It’s a waiting game now to see what, if any, of this gets confirmed by the studio. Christopher Nolan is a busy and ambitious filmmaker, and it would be a huge years-long commitment for him to continue on with another superhero franchise like this. Most likely we will have to wait until June 14th when Man of Steel is unleashed and prove to be a box office phenomenon before ANY of this rampant speculation is addressed by Warner Brothers. Plus it’s not in Christopher Nolan’s nature to reveal anything before its time. But if Man of Steel soars and (fingers crossed) this plan proves true, there would be no bigger or better way to approach Justice League than to have Cavill and Bale headline with Nolan, Snyder and Goyer behind the scenes.
Expect a lot more on this story, confirmations, denials and all…
SOURCE: Latino Review