They will make or break DC’s film franchise.
Marvel has been pumping out amazing films like a well-oiled machine, so much so that every time they announce one we expect it to be good. They’ve taken some of the most unknown characters in comic history and made them high profile because of a great movie.
Then there’s DC. Unfortunately, they haven’t been nearly as successful with Marvel. Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, the Michael Keaton Batman films, and the first couple Christover Reeve Superman movies were bright spots, but ones that – in the modern world supersaturated with superhero films – feel like the exception rather than the rule. And that’s pretty much it. Better we don’t talk about Green Lantern, Catwoman, or Batman & Robin.
DC is trying their hand at a cinematic universe akin to the MCU. The first entry in this universe came over two years ago in Man of Steel, but they’re really hoping to kick things off this year with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, then follow up with Suicide Squad. Despite the hype surrounding these movies, there’s no guarantee DC will do the characters well, and either, or God forbid both, of the films do poorly, the entire DCEU could go down the drain.
Here’s the top four reasons DC needs to knock these two movies out of the park.
4. Unique Casting Choices
Never before have we seen such outrage at casting than with Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad. To kick things off, Ben Affleck is playing Batman. That’s right, the guy that starred in that crappy Daredevil film in the early 2000s. That was just the tip of the iceberg, though. Jesse Eisenberg was cast as Lex Luthor (although, he is actually playing Lex Luthor Jr) after it was rumored that Bryan Cranston was considered for the role (a rumor later debunked).
On the Suicide Squad side of things, the cast is full of new and rising stars like Will Smith, Jared Leto, Margot Robbie, and Cara Delevingne, but it all feels just a little…weird. I mean, Will Smith in an ensemble film instead of leading the way?
3. Did I Mention It’s a Universe?
When setting up a cinematic universe, your films have to be good. Period. Especially when the film in question is there to help launch your cinematic universe. Iron Man flat worked as a springboard for the MCU. And once we learned there would be more adventures in that same universe, we were already on board. Then to really drive it home, Marvel released The Avengers, and we all know how that one turned out. Their two most important movies in setting up the universe were some of their best, and it has more than paid off for them now.
DC is jumpstarting their universe largely with Batman v Superman, complete with DC’s “holy trinity” of Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. If it is a terrible film, then they’ve already shot themselves in the foot. Nobody will be interested in seeing another DCEU film if the one that kicked it off was awful. Sure, Suicide Squad still exists, and those that have hope will go see it, but if that one is bad as well, then they put the last nail in the coffin. Fool them once? Sham on them. Fool them twice? DC is going to need another reboot.
2. Riding the Hype Train
When Comic Con came around, DC’s trailers managed to shut up all of the Marvel fanboys in the house (I do hate classfiying Marvel fans as fanboys though). The promises we got of BvS and SS were so immense that we immediately had hope that DC could be great on the big screen again.
However, that is all the more pressure to deliver on said promises. If those films do not live to the expectations DC has set for us, all faith in the rest of their slate is gone. Forget about the rest of the universe, the fans aren’t going to forgive them for screwing up properties as great as the Trinity and the Suicide Squad.
1. Starting on Rocky Ground
The first film in the DCEU, Man of Steel, released back in 2013, and the reviews are split down the middle. Half said it was great, the other half said it was awful. Personally, I’m in the middle, and I thought it was simply okay.
That being said, controversy is not a great way to start out a new universe. As a result, fans are already skeptical that BvS will be good because Man of Steel didn’t really blow anyone’s mind. In a sense, that’s kind of a strike against DC already. If this trend of controversial films continues, fans will give up and watch Marvel and Fox movies where they’re almost guaranteed a good watch. The universe might last a bit longer this way, but it’d only be a matter of time before it bit the dust.
Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad are both scheduled to release in 2016, and there’s a lot riding on their shoulders. DC better get these right, or Marvel will come on top as the king of comic book films for another decade or so. I’d rather not see them fail, because I love both Marvel and DC, and I’d be more than happy to treat myself to great films from both properties, regardless of which one people think is better. Fingers crossed that your movies do well, DC.
Do you guys think BvS and SS will make or break the DCEU? Are you excited for them? What do you think the outcome of DC films will be? Shoot us a comment down below or get a hold of us on Twitter at @NewRockstars.