Justice League movie moving ahead?

News Simon Brew 6 Jun 2012 - 06:22

Off the back of The Avengers, Warner Bros takes a step towards bringing Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and more together, in Justice League...

You'd have to say this story isn't a surprise. At the time of writing, Marvel's The Avengers movie has over $1.3bn in the bank from the worldwide box office alone, and it's basically redefined the financial expectations of the modern day superhero movie. Warner Bros is one of the many studios that has taken notice.

Compared to Marvel, the DC universe has been less successfully leveraged on the big screen. Outside of Superman and Batman, Warner Bros has struggled to find bona fide success. But that hasn't stopped it resurrected its plan for a Justice League movie, and Variety is now reporting that the studio has ordered a script for such a film.

Will Beall is the man it's entrusted to come up with a first draft. Beall has penned the studio's upcoming Gangster Squad film, and his hiring marks the latest attempt to mount a Justice League movie. It's been a few years now since George Miller was set to direct one.

Which heroes, and in what guise, will be featured is a tricky one. Batman and Superman are certainties, although it's equally likely that Christian Bale won't be playing the former. But who else will be in there? Green Lantern? Wonder Woman? The Flash? Why not help yourself to a little speculation in the comments, below...


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Oh boy. This can't end well.

Are we to presume than that this will be a 'backwards Avengers' in that WB will be hoping to spin out films after it? Obviously Superman will be the exception (maybe Green Lantern if they get Reynolds back) but Batman will need a new actor and even if they didn't, it's unlikely it would be the Nolan take anyway, and the rest are complete blank slates. I suppose it makes sence from a DC point of view in that they can see the reaction to each Character and hope that at least one "does a Ruffalo". 

The reason Avengers was a success was because they didn't try and introduce all the characters in one movie, and so were able to concentrate more on plot.  They took their time (many years) and each character (except for Black Widow, Hawkeye and I suppose Hulk) had their own movie to set them up.  And even those 3 had some introduction in Iron Man 2 and Thor and the Norton Hulk.  This meant that the Avengers were able to hit the ground running and devote what little character introduction was needed to to Widow and Hawkeye.  Not to mention they got a great ensemble writer/director to make it happen. 

WB are just trying to do too much, too quickly.  Their eagerness to jump on the moneytrain will tank just as badly as almost every other time they have done it.

What's that sound...? Can anyone hear it? I think it might be a barrel having its bottom scraped...

Oh no, silly me. I got it wrong. It's the sound of a bandwagon being jumped upon.

To true. The build up to Avengers in the other francises is a key to its success. If DC rush to the team movie it'll be a disaster. They need to create the seperate streams for each character first.

DC & Warner are in a good place to do this now with the Nolan Batman story coming to an end. with the exception of superman whose new film is already in the can they can start from scratch and do an Avengers style run up if they choose. For those criticising them for jumping on Bandwagons, we are all great at spending other peoples money and fantastic at pointing out what films they should make when we have absolutely no risk if it fails. WB have access to some of the most successful comic book characters over the past 6 decades and they have evidence that a tie up if done right will make a lot of money. if they are going to spend $20million then this makes sense, why don't we back it rather than slate it in it's embryonic stage

Wow. Could this really work on the big screen? And surely the almost god-like abilities of Superman would make the rest of the cast almost obsolete? That being said, I had my doubts about the Avengers, and look how that turned out...

I'd rather see a Batman/Superman Movie or a Superman:Red Dawn film.

I'm unsure. On the one hand: No-body likes origin stories, introducing characters in the prime of their time is always what makes good superhero films (Joker in TDK, all of the Avengers were pre-established) and WB may actually be playing it smart by giving us a full set of superheros that most of s have a general idea of. On the other hand: It's thick, how are they going to pull this off- Avengers was probably more suited to this style purely because the characters lend themselves to interaction, but Justice League is a group of gods- giving them their own tale first would simply work far neater. This one could go either way, it all depends on the production team- I for one, would love to see it. 

I'm not the first to say this on here but jumping straight into a Justice League film would be completely crazy. I think the first thing that Warner Brothers need to do is create a seperate DC film department - Like what Disney have done with Marvel - and make sure that there is some consistancy between these films. Then the next thing I would do is after Nolan has finished with Batman, reboot him to create a new Batman that doesn't exsist in such a realistic world. Then, after that, I would try and get a World's Finest film on the go and if that is successful, then attempt to intoduce the rest of the members in the Justice League in Solo films and then finally do a Justice League film.
I reckon they could do it in about six years, which might seem like a long time but jumping the gun and creating a Justice League film now would be really bad.

Now we're talking!

It's that anticipation that has been generated by the individual movies that led to the Avengers astounding opening then the fact that it was also a great movie too meant it was able to keep up the momentum.

I actually just went to see it for the second time last night with my brother who hadn't caught it yet and the cinema was still fuller than a lot of movies I've been to in their opening week.

The problem is going to be all about the introductions.  The only way I can see it working is if they build it initially around Superman, Batman and Green Lantern who have already had origins and then find story elements that allow them to introduce Wonder Woman and Flash so we know who they are as characters and why they should be there, then perhaps leave their origins to follow up movies.

The Avengers, was the fruition of long term planning. This smacks of a cash in.Done properly this could be great, But Warners see instant cash signs 

Failed Wonder Woman project, Superman Returns = miss, Green Lantern = Miss, Jonah Hex = disaster, and Watchmen = Under appreciated.  Warner's track record for properties that it owns (DC comics is owned by WB) does not inspire much faith in a Justice League project.  The biggest issue appears to be producers, writers and directors that either do not understand comics or make changes that completely skew the characterization.  Jonah Hex is a simple old west comic, no Indian curses or dual Gatling guns.  Hex is simply an ex-soldier turned bounty hunter; the film should have been more of a scarred "High Planes Drifter".  Green Lantern I refuse to watch and cannot in all fairness make an informed comment, with the exception of I hated the uniform/costume.   

Oh dear. The fundamental problem that I have is this:

If this movie gets made, I would so so SO want it to be great. My expectation is that, for many of the reasons already mentioned in other posts, it probably won't be. Maybe if DC left it a couple of years, so not be seen as leaping on the Avengers bandwagon. it might have stood a chance.

Also, The Avengers  only had to recast one actor (which, as it turned out, worked). There were enough established faces in to carry through. Let's be honest, if Justice League gets to be made, it's likely to be a completely a completely new cast.

I can only see this going badly. I think the Batman we're becoming used to in the Nolan films is the epitome of lone wolf and so I really can't see him in a team-up movie. Also, are they seriously just going to throw all of these superheroes at us when half of the audience won't have heard of them?

I mean, I only know most of the Justice League because of Big Bang Theory.

With Warner Brothers executives running around like headless chickens at the moment I half expect the new Superman movie to be delayed at any time for a reshoot, to allow the shoehorning in of a couple of extra characters in at the opening or finale. I certainly agree that the brilliant opening of the Avengers was boosted by the minor setpieces in the preceeding movies. Warner Brothers will have to play it carefull if they jump straight into a JLA movie. Perhaps a World's Finest movie would be a better bet if they keep the two characters the same. Superman is always assumed to be a virtual god, but every movie except Superman 2 has underpowered villains that were never really any threat. JLAs a great idea and it may do well if done properly, but who to put in it. Certainly Superman and Batman, Green Lantern has a recent movie out, and certainly Wonder Woman wouldn't need any introduction to most people though the current comic version bears little resemblance to the old Lynda Carter series. Flash, well they've done a movie and tv series (a rubbish one).  If its a good story, with a dark Knight Batman, maybe it will offset the boy scout Superman. There are any number of good Justice League comic stories they could tell, none of them will be well known to non-comic readers and many easily adapted into a film script. I for one wish them well, but always more room for KFC.

I'm not a comic-book fan, but I tend to enjoy the good movies that are spun from them. That said, I really don't get the point of a Superman/Batman team up or a Justice League spin-off. Superman is flawed in that he's too bloody perfect meaning it's hard for writers to come up with viable baddies if they're not going to rely on Kryptonite. How many different powers does he have exactly?  And why does he need to team up with the likes of Batman (with not a single power to his name) for any conceivable reason? I can't see his presence doing anything other than off-balancing the entire thing (something that wasn't a problem with The Avengers).

Kryptonite is overused - I think if there was a powerful enough magic villain, he/she could prove a threat to Superman, without completely debilitating him. 

For example, Loki vs Superman would be a good battle - I can't think of a significant DC magic villain aside from Black Adam. 

I would also definitely want to see a proper awesome standalone Flash movie before Justice League. 

The only way this thing can work is if Warner Bros. allows its animation staff to write the screenplay.

LOL! I love watching Warner Bros scramble. I've never seen a corporate comic company with less competence than these guys. The oldest comic franchises on Earth and they've had, what, two real hits in 40yrs? Superman w/Chris Reeve and The Dark Knight. That's it. And it's not like the Avengers was a secret. You're trying to tell me that WB had, what, 7 years to get their act together, and they're just NOW thinking "uh...JLA?" Wow. I look forward to measuring how fast this one falls: Hex-fast or Green Lantern-fast...

I think drafting a JLA movie is not a bad idea, i just think that this would be the wrong time to actually make it. This should be the end point where established at the cinema characters story arcs meet up. It is easy to be cynical, but sometimes it is justified. 

I think I'd rather see a live action film of Defenders Of The Earth

 Lol. Big Bang Theory is a good place to learn the Justice League line up.

i think one problem with putting DC characters into movies, versus marvel characters, is marvel characters, and their stories were always known for their humanity, flawed heroes, interpersonal relationships, and for lack of a better word, soap operas, whereas dc  stories always seemed more like straight up action interspersed with real cornball stuff.  I don't know if that has changed over the years.  The smallville tv show was successful because they successfully parlayed birth of a hero into a coming of age story.  Batman often works because he is in turmoil.  but honestly, i just remember dc comics being bland.

i dont see why there would need to be intro movies, not that there is anything wrong with that.  i think people are roughly familiar with supes, bats, flash, WW and GL.  for a movie, you could make superman a little less powerful, make him still a relatively novice hero, who relies on an older batman for strategy, wisdom, caution, etc.  have several of the heroes meet up simply because they have arrived on the scene to investigate a disturbance, which would be wonderwoman in some altercation over a misunderstanding.  have the villain/s be something mythological from her backstory.  introduce one of the heroes, say flash, much later in the film.

i think the only danger is if they did it soon, it wouldn't matter if it was good, it would be thought of as a poor mans avengers.  and, as everyone says, a cash in (as though there are any businesses out there that don't keep their eyes open for trends and potential profits).

Whic DC characters would everyone like to see? For me it has to be Spiderman.

they should just do Batman Vs. Superman

 well, if muhammed ali could knock superman down, i suppose batman could give him a run for his money

Considering Spiderman belongs to Marvel (Or Sony if you want to be VERY particular), there's zero chance of that actually happening. Unless of course this was just some top notch trolling then I duly apologise...

I agree there are problems with the hyper-powered worlds of Superman et al versus that of Batman.  But the comics have managed this well.  Check out any of the DC animated movies that feature Superman/Batman.  The boy scout approach of Superman versus the 'greater good' focus of Batman is a great juxtaposition, and various comics have approached the idea that Batman is there to keep an eye on Superman, and to take take him out if he becomes a threat.

It CAN be done.  That's not to say that WB wouldn't screw it up ;-)

Agree x 1000 (excepting All Start Superman, all the DCAU movies have been great).

I think what I feel from this is they might write a really super good Justice Leauge script take take and get it right.. then don't make the movie. Work backwards on how to make that movie work with introduction movies... hell you can kill 2 birds with one stone and introduce Flash/Manhunter, Batman/Superman, Wonderwoman/GreenLanter (not a good mix i know) together not in that order or mix but the DC thing could be Team Up movies leading into one bigger movie that was planned for.. but thats just what i get from it

Just can't see it working. Outside of Batman and Superman the DC universe is weak and unlikely to appeal to a broad audience. Unfortunately for DC, the recent Avengers movie confirmed what comic book fans have known for years, DC is a million miles behind Marvel in terms of character, story and talent. 
It'll be many years before DC is in a position to launch a film of this sort, if indeed they ever get to that point.

Agreed. It will need a success story to build on tho. The first Ironman film set the tone and created the anticipation for more. Green Lantern was a wasted opportunity as it didn't do for DC what Ironman did for Marvel. The new Superman film should be seen as the key to spark off a new beginning for the company. Let the dust settle on Nolans brilliant take on Batman, introduce the Flash, Wonder Woman, or whoever in Supermans film and build up to a new Comic style Batman movie leading into the Justice League film. I'm not a big fan of Superman but if they tone down the Lois and Clark drama it potentially could be a success.

The problem with Superman is that he has superior strength, speed, vision, hearing, heck, he can even turn back time if the circumstances are right. Add to that Green Lantern who has the ability to conjure any item imaginable out of thin air and you have a pretty indefeatable set of good guys, to whom any bad guy would prove no match. 

When the good guys are so powerful it's quite boring to watch. 

Superheroes need a villain who is their match, either physically or mentally - it makes for a more exciting battle... Magneto is the perfect foil for Wolverine with his metal skeleton, Green Goblin/Lizard/Octavius are great Spidey villains because, like our hero, they are scientists, likewise Doom vs FF - Loki and Thor are on even ground as are Cap and Red Skull and then you have the whole army of Iron Man clones who fight with Tony Stark.In Superman it is an uneven match with Luthor - LL is clearly more intelligent, but Supes is his physical superior. Green Lantern just takes on people just like himself, which is boring - only Batman has worthy foes.

In fact Batman, with his gadgets and internal angst, is probably the most interesting of DC's stable but he's had plenty of films of late - does he need another one...?

That's a problem for the writers. If the characters were that untouchable, they wouldn't have been around for 70 years. ;)

Don't you think it's telling though that DC's most successful character, film wise, is the one with no actual powers, who has to solve problems with his brain, well honed skills and the help of his friends?

I think it's only as telling as the people who make the film. A writer and producer with singular vision can make nearly any character viable and popular. For every DARK KNIGHT, there's a BATMAN & ROBIN... ;)

The live action Transformers franchise has proven that writing and producing has very little sway over the success of a film and word of mouth and reputation of the characters is far more important (sad but true). BATMAN & ROBIN was indeed a mess, and has been the lowest grossing of all the Batman films, but it was still far from a flop. Despite it's cheesy script, bad casting and poor acting it still reaped more than double it's budget in box office returns.

In the top 20 most successful franchises of all time, amongst the myriad of dinosaurs, boy wizards, sparkly vampire and Marvel heroes (Avengers, X-Men, Spidey) Batman is the sole DC representative at no. 9. Superman is nowhere to be seen. The public vote with their feet.

Wow someone still remember that show !

Time for a bit of Tintin-esque motion capture for me

I cannot believe some people here, granted that I am not much of a comic book reader but at the very least I know that there have been more that one superman(earth-2, earth-3, etc.) so citing all powers giving to all supermen as a reason against a film is bad. Not to mention that in dc there plenty of great villains that are more than a match against superman. Braniac stores planets and destroys them just to acquire all data in the universe. And don't tell me that Lex Luthor isn't Superman's arch villain, to a so called boy scout like superman, Luthor is untouchable because of the law to not mention his involvement in cadmus. Or How about Dark Seid who has pretty much the same powers as superman, and wants something called the "anti-life equation" is that powerful enough.

The JLU series was great, and Young Justice is good too, so don't tell me that there aren't good stories in DC. A movie will tough considering how little most people know about DC but it is not impossible. My problem is that most origin stories for JL (animated series/movies) have always been about an alien threat, then they introduce the martian manhunter, wonder woman sees the global threat and comes out of her island for the first time, and the other heroes come together in a big battle, after each failed on their own.

ps. forgot to mention, Superman is weak to magic so he is not perfect.

I think a good story arc is to slowly work Lex into the White House through the seperate films, and run the story slightly similar to Public enemies or the recent Smallville serious when heroes become enemies of the state. The JLA movie will take place when Lex becomes the President...

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