Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

The Superman stuff is what takes me out. Snyder’s Superman is such a mess and the main reason why I end up disliking his films. It’s obvious that Snyder’s only interest in Superman is making him an antagonist. The “how do we make Superman interesting” answer is “make him evil” every time. It’s what he does every time, and even Suicide Squad works on the premise that the team exists in case Superman went bad.

And I think this works if he committed to it. But he doesn’t...at all. “What if Superman was hated like Spider-Man?” might actually make an interesting movie, but Snyder wants the audience to be skeptical of Clark while also making the in-universe population love him. But they don’t ever see a loveable Superman outside of the footage Joss Whedon shot.

If Snyder got his way, Clark would be a villain in 4/5 movies he was in. And in Man of Steel, Clark is only not the villain because he’s fighting three evil Supermen. Clark redeeming himself (even sacrificing himself) to make up for what happened in Metropolis would be really cool. Superman having to earn the people’s trust is a great premise. But Snyder doesn’t care about redeeming Superman because he doesn’t like Superman. I think Snyder thinks he’s boring.  So he engineers ways for Superman to be the bad guy again and again.

If I were Snyder’s script doctor, I would do it this way

BvS - Mostly the same except a) Batman is the champion of the people (maybe even the government) instead of working for revenge. When he realizes Superman is good, he teams up with Clark b) Clark is working his butt off saving people and winning people over. He’s Chris Reeve Superman. He still dies

Justice League - The same except NO Superman. He’s dead. The League has to win without him.

Reign of the Supermen - Do a full movie of this. Four people emerge claiming to be Superman. Batman has to figure out who is who, knowing that they will need a Superman vs Darkseid. Cavill’s Superman comes back.

Justice League 2 - Darkseid shows up but Clark isn’t ready. Or sure of himself. Batman trains him. The League fails and Superman comes in to save the day (like in Justice League) but gets his butt kicked. Cliffhanger

Justice League 3 - If you want to do evil Superman, do it here. Clark is at his lowest and susceptible. But he overpowers it because he’s won everyone back. He’s the hero of Earth now. And United, they take Darkseid down.

Clark goes through a journey of redemption. He has to win over the people, he has to conquer death, he needs to prove to himself that he can, and he needs to destroy the bad guy.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I finished JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE SNYDER CUT: PART 5: "Something Darker: (actual title) and JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE SNYDER CUT: PART 6: "Epilogue" (actual title).

It was good. I like the part where Bruce introduces Alfred and says, "I work for him."

But it's pretty ridiculous to include flash-forwards to Darkseid conquering Earth, corrupting Superman and to have gone to the length of spending apparently $70 million dollars to film an extra flash forward to this dark future that will never be addressed again in a DC superhero movie. That said, Snyder apparently did all the extra work unpaid in order to have the creative control to create these cliffhangers that will go unresolved except in a blanket fashion with THE FLASH introducing a multiverse where Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton will both appear as separate versions of Batman.

I'm glad this four hour version exists for the fans and to have a complete picture of what JUSTICE LEAGUE was meant to be. But I can't say I like it even if I can see the craft and skill. The closing action sequences are terrific with Superman and the Flash and Cyborg working together to split the Mother Boxes while Batman buys the League time and space and Aquaman and Wonder Woman (and later Superman) fight Steppenwolf.

The Whedon cut, in contrast, had Superman effectively end the fight with Steppenwolf alone and there was the sense that Superman made the rest of the League redundant, something Snyder avoids by showing how in the flash forwards, the League are defying a mind-controlled Superman. The indication that Superman's resurrection will provide Darkseid with a perfect soldier, however, pretty much undermines any positivity or hope offered in this single film with no sequels coming.

And it seems to me that Snyder ultimately doesn't really want to do a Superman story. He wants to do a story about a superhero who might be corrupted and whose great power is dangerous and suspicious and potentially demonic -- and Superman is simply not a good choice for that kind of story because even in the Snyder version, Snyder indicates that Superman would have to be mind controlled to be evil and that it isn't anything within his actual characterization but something exterior to him.

Most creators who wanted to tell this sort of story have created Superman analogue characters: INSUFFERABLE by Mark Waid created the Olympian, RISING STARS by J. Michael Straczynski created Flagg -- but Snyder contorts Superman so much, even putting him in an all black costume that Superman only wore for one comic book arc and eliminating the Clark Kent identity by having Clark declared legally dead in BVS, something he was going to maintain for the sequels. If Snyder doesn't like Superman wearing blue and red and doesn't like the Clark Kent identity, I have to wonder why he ever tried to tell any Superman stories in the first place.

Once again, I totally see why Warner Bros. balked at having Superman in name only in JUSTICE LEAGUE and brought in Joss Whedon although that was a disaster of itself judging from the audience response and fallout that's resulted even years after its release.

I like the Whedon cut of JUSTICE LEAGUE. I love Batman quipping, "Sorry, guys -- I forgot to bring a sword," and remarking on Steppenwolf, "Jesus! He is tall." Batman telling the Flash to save one person is lovely. Superman's sunny disposition is a relief. But I understand it fell flat with the audience who expected more of Snyder's operatic darkness and found themselves watching a big budget sitcom.

And I appreciate the craft and skill and storytelling of JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE SNYDER CUT: PARTS 1 - 5: "Don't Count On It, Batman," "The Age of Heroes," "Beloved Mother," "Beloved Son," "Change Machine," "All the King's Horses," "Something Darker" and "Epilogue" (actual title). But it's a bridge to nowhere due to footage that Snyder went out of his way to film on his own time and unpaid to add to his original material. It also presents a version of Superman that would be better as a new character with a different name and costume. And it's a platform for subsequent productions that will not be made, meaning it's an extremely capable equivalent of SLIDERS' "The Seer."

A two hour version of this film without the cliffhanger elements probably should have been released to theatres. There's one alteration that Whedon made that would have fit well. In Whedon's cut, Batman refers to "the big gun" when Superman is resurrected and out of control. The secret weapon is revealed to be Lois, brought to the scene by Alfred. This neatly addressed the Knightmare situation and quietly laid it to rest. The rest should have been Snyder's movie to stand or fall on its own merits without requiring sequels if it fell. If there were sequels, the Knightmare storyline could come back; if not, the Knightmare scenario was effectively resolved.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I agree.  When the movie ended and was wrapping up, I felt good.  I felt happy.  I even had the thought "you know, I liked this"

I'd forgotten about the Knightmare sequence.  It was completely unnecessary.  I've already said my piece about Snyder and Superman.  I don't get it.  It's not for me.  But like with you, I'm glad that the hordes of Snyder fans got this.  I wish they'd just be happy with it and not clamor for more.

I still think they should do 2 and 3 in animation.  WB would make their money back and you'd get the cast back.  Snyder wouldn't have to be obsessively involved but it'd still be his vision.  I think it's perfect.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I rewatched the Whedon cut last night and... I am really upset with Joss Whedon for being a serial abuser of women. There's no doubting that everything his ex-wife said about him was true now that Charisma Carpenter, Michelle Trachtenberg, Amber Benson, Jose Molina and ANGEL tie-in writer Jeff Mariotte have come out against him. There are horrific reports that throughout the JUSTICE LEAGUE reshoots, Whedon was mocking Snyder (who'd left to deal with his daughter's suicide) and referring to Wonder Woman as Black Widow (which suggests some serious cognitive difficulties).

Apparently, Gal Gadot refused to film the scene where Barry lands face first into her chest and Whedon threatened to destroy her career if she didn't comply. She refused and escalated it to Warner Bros. executives who told Whedon to film it with Gadot's double, Caitlin Burles. There's also Whedon clearly and deliberately having his own credit on the film come immediately before a shot of a homeless man with a sign that says, "I tried," a bit of passive-aggressiveness that was further reflected when Whedon liked a tweet calling Steppenwolf the worst DC movie villain yet.

That said... I still feel that Whedon's work itself on Snyder's footage and his own additions were strong and turned Snyder's dark, operatic material into a lightweight crowdpleaser that I concede pleased no crowds. There's this absurd myth that artists can be hurtful to others because they produce quality work; it's even more absurd when applied to Whedon whose material, on the whole, is very, very, very average and occasionally above average. By his own assessment, AVENGERS isn't a great movie, but it's a great time. I'd describe pretty much all his work that way. Whedon's products are pleasantly diverting at best.

Whedon did a great job with adding more jokes and humour to Snyder's dour sensibilities from the Flash having a panic attack before facing Steppenwolf to Aquaman confessing his fears because he sits on Wonder Woman's lasso. Whedon's Superman is a sunny joy and Henry Cavill's charisma bursts off the screen (although most viewers seem to be focused on his CG upper lip which I still don't really notice much unless I'm looking for it). Whedon did a strong pastiche of Snyder's style with the opening of racial strife, homelessness and despair set to a Leonard Cohen song that was so gripping that most viewers assumed it was Snyder's work, and gradually transitioned into a lighter style. Whedon ended his version of JUSTICE LEAGUE not with a cliffhanger that would never be resolved but a shot of the Flash and Superman racing for fun.

However, it'd be silly to call Whedon's JUSTICE LEAGUE 'better.' Whedon's JUSTICE LEAGUE, despite some voiceovers about "hope," doesn't have anything to say beyond how much fun it is to have Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, the Flash and Cyborg in the same movie. Whedon's work has never truly been about anything other than how much fun it is to have a gang of friends whether that gang of friends is headlined by Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent or Buffy and Willow or Steve Rogers and Tony Stark. While I don't like Snyder's vision a lot, Snyder's JUSTICE LEAGUE was about how power can corrupt or be corrupted. Whedon's JUSTICE LEAGUE was about two hours long.

I can see why fans coming in after BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE (actual title) were thrown off by the Whedon cut and picking at the seams. Having seen the Snyder Cut now, I can tell now more than ever which Whedon shots are Whedon's: Jason Momoa is wearing a wig in the Whedon version of Aquaman declining to join Bruce, Ezra Miller's hair shifts when he starts talking about brunch -- but Whedon's sensibilities are closer to my own: unfussy storytelling, getting to the point quickly and succinctly, undercutting any grandiosity with a quip, Batman telling Barry, "Save one person. Don't talk. Don't fight. Get in. Get one out" and assuring that after that, Barry will know what to do next. "You'll know." I wish my father had talked to me that way during one of my panic attacks when I was a child.

And interestingly, the average critic responded to the movie the way I did; the average movie critic was not a Snyder-fan, not a superhero junkie and declared that JUSTICE LEAGUE was flawed but sweet and nice enough to satisfy. https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/justice-league-2017 And judging from the box office, there was an audience for pleasant diversion to the sum of $660 million -- which would have been a success if JUSTICE LEAGUE had been budgeted as a $100 million film instead of a $300 million movie.

And for the future... I suspect that no one other than me will ever watch the Whedon cut of JUSTICE LEAGUE, but it also looks to me like future DC movies will have a loose connection to any version of the film. WONDER WOMAN contradicted BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE (actual title) as Wonder Woman did not sink into isolation and despair after WWI. AQUAMAN contradicts both versions of JUSTICE LEAGUE with Arthur having a totally different relationship with his mother. SHAZAM has Superman wearing the red and blue. I do expect a lot of clamour for more Zack Snyder DC movies, but DC's slate seems to be quite full. They're looking to reboot Superman in another separate continuity film, likely with a black actor.

I think it'd be cool to get a DC Animated feature for Snyder's JL2 and JL3. I'd watch it and probably consider it good without necessarily enjoying it.

Whedon's JUSTICE LEAGUE seems to be one of the most hated movies of all time and it's sort of fitting that it will be Joss Whedon's last work in film.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Slider_Quinn21 wrote:

I watched WW84.  Non-spoiler review: I really liked so much of it.  I thought the performances were fun.  I thought the story was compelling.  I loved how they seemed to have fun with the 1984 setting, and the romance stuff was good. 

But while I liked all the pieces, the overall movie just sorta didn't work for me.  I was excited to come back and watch (I watched it in three sittings), but when it was over, I felt disappointed.  I thought they spent a lot of good time making everything worked, and I felt like the ending was completely rushed and unsatisfying.  And while I liked Pedro Pascal, I didn't buy Max Lord as a character for about 2/3 of the movie.  I also think the dynamic with the dreamstone didn't quite work.

Patty Jenkins is a good filmmaker and I think a lot of it worked.  But something about it bothered me enough to not really love the film as a whole.

Anyone else see it?

I finally got around to watching WONDER WOMAN 1984 last night. I guess I really have been busy.

It was okay. As Slider_Quinn21 highlighted, the logic of the dreamstone is so fuzzy, undefined, contradictory and vague with characters alternatively not knowing how it works and knowing exactly how it works and Maxwell Lord somehow dependent upon others to make (a single) wish except Barbara Minerva later gets a second wish and Lord somehow able to take something in return once the wish recipient has received their desire through means and methods unclear -- either control of their army or some aspect of their health or a possession.

It's also unclear if Maxwell Lord's power is to rewrite reality to move elements of the world around or if he's magically creating security forces and nuclear weapons that didn't previously exist. It's unclear how Wonder Woman knows that to simply declare her desire to renounce her wish will be sufficient to instantly make Chris Pine disappear. It's unclear whether or not renouncing the wishes reverses the transaction or reverses time itself or simply removes Lord's magically created weapons and cars and whatnot from reality.

It's just too vague to know what Wonder Woman is fighting or how she wins, so I just had to sit back in the end and enjoy watching Gal Gadot and Kristen Wiig and Chris Pine onscreen. I was disappointed that Wiig and Gadot didn't get a whole movie to be platonic girlfriends (or more, as the comics have established in the last couple years that Wonder Woman is bisexual), but I just enjoyed the recreated 1984 (which I don't remember because I was less than one year old) and appreciated the spectacle and liked seeing Diana learn how to fly and felt enthusiastic about re-reading Wonder Woman comics from 1987 and it was okay.

Very vague dream logic in this movie.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Yeah.  It's also a very forgettable movie, unfortunately.  I think it'll end up alongside David Goyer's Suicide Squad, where I often forget to include it in the DCEU.

James Gunn's Suicide Squad movie looks great, by the way.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

TLDR: This post is about Superman and how a couple years ago, he had a four year storyline that resembled a sixth season of SLIDERS that also inspired the current SUPERMAN AND LOIS TV show.

I suspect that writers will sometimes need to ask themselves: what are they most passionate about writing? What do they enjoy producing most when they type? And is their story one that is focused on what they enjoy typing?

I have no idea why teenagers and people in their early 20s are watching SLIDERS even today (on Peacock) and writing new SLIDERS stories, but some are and some occasionally ask me for feedback on their pages. And I am noticing an alarming trend that we saw a lot of back in 2000: young writers producing Season 6 stories with the outlines wholly and totally focused on an interdimensional Kromagg war.

I'm not the final arbiter of taste, and I encourage anyone who really wants to do THE KROMAGG WAR CHRONICLES to write one. I'll help.

But I recently reviewed three clever outlines where three clever writers used time travel / a multiversal butterfly effect / an interdimensional system restore to erase Seasons 3 - 5 and bring back the original sliders on Page 1 of these stories (where I have only ever managed to do it by Page 3 myself).

These brilliant conceptualists then... plunged the restored sliders back into THE KROMAGG WAR CHRONICLES with storylines that insisted on resolving all unfinished plot points from Seasons 3 - 5 in the context of an interdimensional war -- even though these writers had erased Seasons 3 - 5. I asked these writers: were they actually passionate about writing THE KROMAGG WAR CHRONICLES: An Epic in 12 - 16 Parts?

The answer was always no, not really; all they really wanted to do was write SLIDERS stories of Quinn / Wade / Rembrandt / Arturo exploring parallel worlds, but they wanted to connect those original quartet stories to Season 6.

I understand that, but from 2000 to about 2007, we saw numerous brilliant writers attempt THE KROMAGG WAR CHRONICLES. I have read them all and none are complete. Some writers got to the point where Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo were back at which point the writers ran out of out of energy to keep going. Most never even made it that far. They were all clearly burnt out and demoralized by writing SLIDERS stories where the fight Kromaggs instead of SLIDERS stories where the sliders slide to parallel worlds and explore them.

The Season 6 stories that were completed were ones that focused on the sliders engaged in sliding -- and made the unresolved plots a far lesser priority.

I think that writers need to ask themselves: what do they enjoy writing? And are they pursuing a plot that's carried by material they would enjoy writing? Because if they don't enjoy it, they are unlikely to finish it, especially when they are doing their writing in their free time for no other reason than pleasure in writing it.

That said, I have read one KROMAGG WAR CHRONICLES style story that was completed -- a series of comic books called SUPERMAN: REBIRTH, ACTION COMICS: REBIRTH and DC COMICS: DOOMSDAY CLOCK. This was a two year run of Superman comics that started with Superman and DC Comics in a very bad situation: DC had rebooted Superman in 2011, abruptly changing him from a late-30s husband to Lois Lane into a single twentysomething. 

This rebooted Superman was largely alienated from the Clark Kent identity as Jonathan and Martha Kent, his adoptive parents, had died when Superman was a teenager. This Superman had none of his relationships with Supergirl and Superboy, no decades-long rapport with Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, Perry White or any of his supporting cast and so removed from humanity that he was dating Wonder Woman. At one point, Superman's identity was revealed to the world as Clark Kent and while it was a good story, the Clark Kent identity had been almost irrelevant to him anyway.

DC Comics soon came to realize: their readership was attached to the version of Superman with his friends and family and history and relationships, but they had destroyed it all, exposed Superman's secret identity to the world, changed his continuity so severely that it was unrecognizable, replaced the original character with a hollow copy -- and the road back to a recognizable status quo would be long and hard and difficult.

Superman had become as muddled and confused as SLIDERS by "The Seer."

DC started the process with an October 2015 mini-series, SUPERMAN: LOIS & CLARK which reveals that the original Superman and Lois are actually still around in this rebooted continuity, believing they are refugees from a destroyed timeline, living in this new universe under the names Clark and Lois White, and they now have a 10 year old son named Jon. They are doing their best to steer clear of this universe's Superman -- except the rebooted Superman suddenly dies of Kryptonite poisoning. The rebooted Lois Lane is also killed.

In SUPERMAN and ACTION COMICS, the original Superman attempts to fill the void by unveiling himself to the world and offering to help the Justice League. The original Lois impersonates her double, trying to investigate her double's death. Also strangely: Clark Kent reappears at the Daily Planet, declaring that Superman asked him to fake their secret identity being exposed to confuse some supervillains. This restores the secret identity -- but leaves the original Superman and Lois confused as to who this Clark Kent really is. They discover that he is Mr. Mxyztptlk, the fifth dimensional imp who has been confused and disoriented by the reboot.

Superman and Lois also discover: this is not a rebooted universe and they are not refugees; this is their home universe and has been all along, but some unknown force altered history and ripped Lois and Superman's timeline in half, creating the rebooted version and the separate original. The original Superman and Lois are able to locate their deceased counterparts who now exist outside the timestream, and they merge with them.

The result is a new timeline that fuses the rebooted Superman continuity with the original continuity -- and also writes young Jon Kent into the timeline. In this combined universe, Lois and Clark got married and had a son, and all their friends have known Jon all his life. All the reboot adventures (except for Superman dating Wonder Woman) are folded into the original timeline additively. Superman reviews his history and notes one oddity: he remembers Jonathan and Martha Kent being alive right to the present day -- but in this current continuity, his parents are still dead from a car crash when Clark was a teenager.

Superman begins to investigate who altered reality to take away his marriage, his son, his family and his parents. This leads him into the 12 part series DOOMSDAY CLOCK. The culprit is revealed to be Dr. Manhattan from WATCHMEN, a cold observer of reality who found Superman's timeline confusing and convoluted with all its revisions from 1939 onwards.

Dr. Manhattan erased the Justice Society of America (the WWII heroes), finding them unnecessary. This had the subsequent effect of erasing the inspiration for Superman's teenaged career as Superboy and erasing the Superboy adventures completely. Dr. Manhattan created a car accident in Clark's youth to kill Clark's parents, subtracting their influence to make Superman more alien. Dr. Manhattan removed Clark's family and marriage and son, finding them extraneous. And Dr. Manhattan is surprised when the original Superman restores himself to existence.

In the DOOMSDAY CLOCK finale that saw print in December 2019, Superman confronts Dr. Manhattan and pleads with him to understand that being a superhero is not about controlling the world; a superhero saves people. Dr. Manhattan is moved; he reaches back into time and restores the Justice Society. This in turn restores Superman's career as Superboy, altering the past so that Jonathan and Martha Kent were still in a car accident, but Superboy now saved their lives.

In the present day, Clark and Lois go to the Metropolis train station and welcome Jonathan and Martha Kent, the final missing pieces of the Superman family now restored to reality.

This is the only KROMAGG WAR CHRONICLES style story that I have ever seen anyone actually start and finish, taking a damaged, muddled series and restoring it point by point, character by character, piece by piece and exploring the multiverse as it did so.

It took four writers (Dan Jurgens, Peter Tomasi, Patrick Gleason and Geoff Johns) and a staff of comic book editors. It took four years to write and print it. And the reason this one was finished where all other such stories failed: it unfolded in two monthly comic book serieses and two mini-serieses, it had writers who were being paid to keep the story going. If any one writer got burnt out, DC would have simply hired you or me or Temporal Flux or SOMEBODY to keep writing it until it was done.

It is simply too much for one writer to produce anything like SUPERMAN: REBIRTH, SUPERMAN: REBORN and DOOMSDAY CLOCK, and to do it as an unpaid fanfic project on evenings and weekends. This is a project that needs a team, a group of editors and a living wage -- and trying to do this unpaid and alone is like trying to use a teacup to empty the ocean. You'll never finish it.

Oh, dear fanfic writers. If you want to write Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo, just get them back on the page by Page 5 at the latest. Then write the SLIDERS stories that you really, really want to write.

**

After I described this Superman storyline to a few fanfic writers, they got back to me and said that, on balance, they'd just focus on writing SLIDERS stories about the sliders sliding to parallel worlds and they would isolate their KROMAGG WAR CHRONICLES content to brief flashbacks to keep them contained.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

So, the new Superman reportedly to be a black Kal-el.  Val-Zod and Calvin Ellis ignored.

https://screenrant.com/black-superman-m … me-period/

Not interested.

It’s funny how Disney (and even Sony) can once again get it right with Sam Wilson and Miles Morales; but Warner still doesn’t have a clue.

I think back to that old, embellished anecdote of a board room full of fat white guys smoking cigars.  They’re reading the new pitches for DC movies and saying “People watch this shit?  Just do whatever, I guess.  But the idiot public only knows Kal-el; that’s the brand”; and then throw the papers on the table and go back to comparing yachts.

1,029

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I thought Calvin Ellis was a black Kal-el

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

pilight wrote:

I thought Calvin Ellis was a black Kal-el

Honestly have no idea.  Never paid much attention to his scattering of appearances because it was so overtly political it was a joke.  He was SuperObama.  But at least it would be a half-ass effort of making a new character by providing the name Calvin Ellis and a change in upbringing.

Half-ass is nothing to stand up and cheer about, though.  A lot of people just don’t seem to think they deserve more than that.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Calvin Ellis is a black Kal-El. That said, like TF -- I never really had much interest in Ellis who was simply an Obama spoof.

I'm intrigued by the idea that Kal-El/Clark Kent in this universe is black and conceivably Michael B. Jordan. Making the character black opens a lot of different life experiences that a Caucasian Clark Kent wouldn't ever know or have and there is no reason why a Kryptonian born infant would somehow correspond to planet Earth's Caucasian ethnicity.

That said -- Superman is a character created by two white men and sold and built into a media empire by white men and Superman ultimately reflects white people's interests and concerns even if the character himself is above all that. TF has written before about how characters like Wally West were essentially white characters presented in a deeply condescending form of fictional "blackface" rather than creating a new character designed to stand for, represent and showcase black people.

I dunno! I would personally be in favour of making Bruce Wayne Asian-American someday; I would like to see myself represented in a character I already see a lot of myself in. The Caucasian Bruce Wayne embodies a lot of (semi-positive) stereotypes about Asians: studious, work-obsessed, technically driven, good with computers and math.

In terms of making Kal-El black and having him land on Earth and grow up with his power and as a black man -- that's an interesting SLIDERS-worthy what-if where by altering a single element of Clark Kent -- his skin colour -- it creates a completely alternate path that could be narratively fascinating, especially if absolutely nothing else were changed.

How does SMALLVILLE change if Clark were played by a handsome, muscular, black youth adopted and raised by John Schneider and Annette O'Toole? Clark is taught strong and virtuous values of kindness and compassion, but he lives in a world where he's denigrated for his skin colour, treated with the assumption that he's subliterate and couldn't possibly be a journalist, working to aid law enforcement that always assumes anyone with his skin has to be a violent criminal, yelled at for taking a romantic interest in the Asian-American Lana Lang, sees the white Chloe mistreated for her attraction to a black kid, is jealous of the blonde and white Whitney Fordman who is the town's hero. What if Superman no longer had all the privileges that come with being white but had the same powers, same friends, same adoptive parents?

I am so fascinated by this question -- but at the same time, TF really has a point that black people deserve better than reskinned white characters.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Grizzlor wrote:

Funny you should say TV, because Warner's actually offered Snyder to do a mini-series, but he decided just to do the 4 hour job.  He really has no place in either medium.

This is actually not true. Snyder wanted to cut JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE SNYDER CUT into separate episodes, but Warner Bros. vetoed this as they would have had to pay the actors an additional fee for each separate installment.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

The Suicide Squad is my favorite thing out of the DCEU and it's not even close.  So much fun and such a fun sandbox.  It's crazy what they can do if they actually use their whole roster.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I don't know what Ezra Miller is on, but Miller cannot seem to go for particularly long without one absurd incident of violence after another.

https://www.cbr.com/the-flash-ezra-mill … -arrested/
https://www.cbr.com/flash-ezra-miller-r … h-threats/

I'm also not sure what a (supposedly) grown adult is doing randomly meeting people at farmers markets to press into service as personal assistants who provide lodging and bail and in return are threatened and robbed.

If you meet Ezra Miller and Miller offers you an assistant job for no apparent reason, keep your distance, don't make eye contact and head for an exit.

Could we please be done with the DCEU Flash and Ezra Miller now?

Temporal Flux once voiced a mild terror that Warner Bros. might enact some Byzantine, Machiavellian scheme to get CW's THE FLASH cancelled so that WB's FLASH movie could take the center stage.

I assume that Berlanti Productions reads this message forum. That they spotted Temporal Flux's alarm. That they responded accordingly: they found some way to encourage Zack Snyder to cast a volatile, unstable, deranged lunatic to play the Flash and figured that the DCEU Flash situation would self-implode well after Grant Gustin would be winding down his time as the Flash.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

There are tons of Flashes.  I don't even know if Barry Allen is the Flash that most people know.

Maybe they need to re-write The Flash movie to feature Barry dying and Wally or Bart or *anyone* takes his place.  I mean, heck, the Snyderverse and the Arrowverse are already tied.  Just cast Grant Gustin as Barry in future stuff.  He's probably cheaper and he certainly seems like less of a loose cannon.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Who is the Flash's greatest supervillain? Eobard Thawne? Professor Zoom? The Anti-Monitor? The Rogues? The Rival, Inertia, Walter West, or Godspeed?

I think it's become clear: the Flash's deadliest enemy is Ezra Miller.

Google Ezra Miller and you get a pretty comprehensive picture of how they are a complete and utter psycho. A lunatic who threatens children and their parents. A nutjob who steals work from musicians and doesn't pay them. A loon who mocks law enforcement on social media when the police are searching for them. A jackass who can't get through a month without being arrested for starting a barfight.

Warner Bros. is in serious trouble with THE FLASH, a movie where their lead actor is a violent criminal who targets children and keeps visiting the same family homes repeatedly to threaten the inhabitants with violence and guns.

Warner Bros. spent 10 years trying to get a FLASH movie together, invested $200 million on the 2023 incarnation of this film after likely spending anywhere from $15- $75 million over 10 years. They paid for scripts they didn't film, for the directors they hired and lost or fired, for holding contracts on the actors, for staffers to keep this movie inching forward.

And now their movie is filmed and is looking unreleasable because Ezra Miller is insane; nobody will look at Miller and see Barry Allen or the Flash. They'll see a maniac named Ezra Miller.

There is no profit to be made on a FLASH movie now. THE FLASH movie is a dead project, a product whose only audience will be the morbidly curious. Any movie has to earn about three times its budget to break even. Is a movie with this much bad press and a cancelled actor likely to earn $600 million? At this point, WB is in no position to refilm Miller's scenes with a new actor; Miller's in every scene.

Ezra Miller has made THE FLASH a write off. There is no DC franchise to be built on Ezra Miller. There is no FLASH movie series with Ezra Miller. No one will ever hire Ezra Miller again; you wouldn't hire Ezra Miller to handle a cash register; I wouldn't trust Ezra Miller to wash my windows. There is no sequel to be made with Ezra Miller; there is no DC Universe series to emerge from any Ezra Miller production.

Temporal Flux once expressed the fear that Warner Bros. would actively destroy CW's THE FLASH show to prop up the FLASH movie; THE FLASH movie has self-destructed all on its own with a determined psychosis that would make David Peckinpah retreat and Bill Dial weep.

Maybe Warner Bros. will use deepfake technology to replace Ezra Miller's face with Timothée Chalamet or Lucas Till. I've written elsewhere that deepfake is fine for a few shots but creates a stiff, inhumanly robotic presence any time you need an actual human performance... but even that would be better than releasing a movie with Ezra Miller in the lead role.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Well, I've heard speculation that they could somehow just turn The Flash into a Keaton Batman movie.  From all accounts, it was already pretty Batman heavy.  Maybe you either change the title, downplay the Flash as much as you can (where he's just the instigator to get to the other universe), reshoot the ending, and make it Batman movie?  Or maybe you change the title and just make the marketing about the Batman aspects of the movie?  I don't know.  Maybe that wouldn't work.

The other thought is, from what we've already seen, Miller appears twice in the film - as different versions of Barry.  Could you just reshoot one of them and leave Miller as a bad guy?

I don't know.  I'm actually fairly excited to see what they do with Keaton, and Keaton is supposed to be a Nick Fury - like character for whatever the future of DC is.  I think they have to release this movie.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

This is pretty messed up: the BATGIRL movie is being shelved despite being filmed and complete. It will not be released on HBO Max or in theatres.

https://www.cbr.com/batgirl-movie-cance … enings-dc/

$90 million dollars to make it and WB held test screenings and has decided not to release it as it is considered so terrible that it will damage the DC brand. This brand has been damaged already by the middling reception of BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN, the box office bomb that was JUSTICE LEAGUE, Affleck quitting Batman (but making cameos), the inability to get a new Henry Cavill Superman feature off the ground, BIRDS OF PREY failing to market itself as a Harley Quinn movie, and basically anything Ezra Miller ever does.

I have to wonder how bad BATGIRL is considered when WB has decided this low(er) budgeted film starring Leslie Grace, JK Simmons and Michael Keaton should never ever ever ever ever be seen by anyone outside WB. It should be noted that the pre-JUSTICE LEAGUE WB regime declared that Zack Snyder's version of JUSTICE LEAGUE was "unwatchable", but having watched the Snyder Cut, I certainly don't think that's true.

There has been a merger (WB-Discovery) since BATGIRL was first greenlit. The desire is for big budget event movies again whereas post JUSTICE LEAGUE, the wish was for lower budgeted fare like, well, BATGIRL. It's baffling to me that they'd shelve BATGIRL but be determined to release the dead-end that is Ezra Miller's FLASH movie.

Not sure what's going on here...

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Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

If it was a male hero, they would release it

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I have no idea what is going with the legion of headless chickens running Warner Bros. right now, but there is no sense and no reason behind much of anything they've done since MAN OF STEEL aside from WONDER WOMAN, AQUAMAN and SHAZAM turning out quite well.

BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN was re-edited into incoherence; SUICIDE SQUAD was hacked up in the edit room to chase the humour of GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY; JUSTICE LEAGUE is probably the most hated movie ever made; WONDER WOMAN 1984 had Diana have sex with a bodyjacked man without consent. They have been working on THE FLASH with Ezra Miller since 2014 and somehow haven't released it as of 2022; they nonsensically waited until Ezra Miller tried to strangle a woman and then they decided to finally shoot the film.

They released a Harley Quinn feature film that was inexplicably titled BIRDS OF PREY and nonsensically rated R over a few profanities which prevented a potential teen audience from watching the film. And despite having Henry Cavill on some sort of contract, WB can't seem to produce another Superman movie or even get him to cameo in SHAZAM.

Now they're arbitrarily cancelling a low-budget BATGIRL movie made for a streaming service while hell-bent on releasing THE FLASH with star Ezra Miller renowned for assault, harassment, threats, kidnapping, exposing small children to loaded firearms, threatening other small children, grooming. Even if BATGIRL is the worst superhero movie ever made, is it more unreleaseable than THE FLASH?

I don't know what the hell they're doing; they don't seem to know either.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Looks like the Batgirl decision is actually a tax dodge:

https://www.cbr.com/warner-bros-cancele … -write-off

Though not planned, it’s Springtime for Batgirl

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I think this has more to do with Ezra Miller than most people are saying.  They can't release Batgirl until they release The Flash - otherwise Keaton being in it doesn't make sense, right?

So if they can't release the Flash, they can't release Batgirl.  So they do the tax dodge, write it off, and maybe they see if they can get fans to demand it after the Flash eventually comes out

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

My understanding of the tax writeoff strategy: if WB-Discovery goes through with it, they can never release BATGIRL. Ever. If they earn so much as a penny in even indirectly, BATGIRL is no longer a writeoff and WB will lose its tax break. And having read more: I understand that writing BATGIRL off makes financial sense even if it's terrible from a fan perspective. There might even be some creative sense given the dire state of THE FLASH, as you've noted.

It wasn't very fair of me to say that WB-Discovery's decisions don't make sense. It would be fairer to say that the previous WB regime's decisions didn't make sense and the new WB-Discovery team are in a bad situation with a lot of bad options.

The BATGIRL movie was greenlit by the former WB regime for the HBO Max streaming service. WB was aiming to replicate Netflix's business model: infinite subscriber growth fuelled by exciting films that would draw viewers to sign up for the service. WB was releasing its entire theatrical slate to streaming.

But Netflix and all streaming services hit a wall; subscriber growth wasn't infinite. Netflix peaked and is now losing subscribers. All streaming services are struggling. After BATGIRL was greenlit for $70 million, studios found that movies don't draw in subscriptions as well as ongoing TV shows.

In the past year, it's become obvious that BATGIRL's two hours won't bring in $70 - 90 million worth of HBO Max subscribers. In contrast, a single season of SUPERMAN AND LOIS is $120 million, offers 11  -  14 hours of content, and brings in subscriber revenue over years because it's a series and not a single installment product.

Even before the streaming crash, BATGIRL was a very peculiar financial proposition. It was basically a TV movie, the streaming time equivalent of three episodes of SUPERMAN AND LOIS, but the WB studio set BATGIRL up to be three to four times more expensive than three TV episodes.

The reason SUPERMAN AND LOIS produces more for less: a TV show's extended lifespan allows longterm planning. TV shows can spend big on sets, effects models and costumes and use those assets across multiple seasons. A superhero movie has to produce those startup items for short-term use, producing less with more in terms of dollars-to-content.

A TV show uses TV salaried-actors and can take advantage of Vancouver TV tax credits because they're creating longterm jobs and longterm community investment. BATGIRL filmed in Glasgow, Scotland for a limited period with Michael Keaton and JK Simmons and its $70 million budget went to $90 million with pandemic protocols.

M. Night Shyamalan was once asked why his movies had gotten so terrible and why he improved on TV; Shyamalan said that big budget films had made him self-indulgent while TV's lean resources forced him to shed his excesses. Berlanti Productions, which produces SUPERMAN AND LOIS, seems to run a tighter financial ship than WB's film studio with WB's costly and unprofitable reshoots of SUICIDE SQUAD and JUSTICE LEAGUE.

Why won't WB-Discovery just eat the cost and release BATGIRL? After any merger, corporations try to cut costs and they clearly think BATGIRL will lose money as a streaming release but lose less as a tax shelter.

Writing BATGIRL off is terrible from an optics standpoint. BATGIRL had a Latina lead and a female-forward media profile. While cast and crew were paid, they now likely have no reel to showcase their skills for future jobs (as the movie, if a tax writeoff, can never be released or used for profit), no profit participation earnings and a massive public embarrassment.

It looks like WB-Discovery is paying bonuses/kill-fees to Leslie Grace, directors Adil El Arbi and bilall Fallah, Michael Keaton and other cast and crew to try to soothe the ruffled feathers.

Looking at it now, I don't understand why BATGIRL was a $70 million TV movie. It would have made more financial sense as a PEACEMAKER-type streaming series. A $70 million BATGIRL series of 10 episodes (effectively the SUPERMAN AND LOIS budget) with guest appearances from JK Simmons and Michael Keaton would have been a far better streaming service product than a two hour movie. Ten episodes can be marketed as an event. Ten episodes draws an audience to a streaming platform, gives them more time to sample that platform's other content and decide to stick around.

Even so, will creators who are female and people of colour ever want to work on medium-budget projects with WB-Discovery? Whatever loss is staunched by BATGIRL now being an unreleased tax shelter may not be worth the terrible PR and the sense that WB-Discovery is erratic, flaky and unreliable.

But even creatively, the new WB-Discovery regime is in a very difficult position. Their precedessors hired Ezra Miller whose violent rampages made THE FLASH a radioactive property. THE FLASH was supposed to start a revitalized DC Extended Universe by integrating Michael Keaton's Batman into the new Miller-led DCEU and removing Ben Affleck as Batman. BATGIRL was set in this post-FLASH, Miller-led DCEU.

BATGIRL had Keaton's Batman with JK Simmons' Commissioner Gordon from JUSTICE LEAGUE. But now, there will be no Miller-led DCEU. BATGIRL became irrelevant to the future of DC properties.

The Miller-led DCEU is dead. WONDER WOMAN and AQUAMAN will probably see a third and final installment each as films independent of the Millerverse and the Snyderverse.  The ARROWVERSE is wrapping up.

Still, I think WB-Discovery would be better off just releasing the BATGIRL movie as a purchase-to-view product to iTunes and Google Play. Charge $15 to download it. For HBO Max subscribers, offer the movie for a $7.50 payment for the first three months before making it subscriber-available without additional cost.

Release BATGIRL to a limited edition $200 blu-ray with the digital BATGIRL YEAR ONE comic, audio commentary from cast and director, all the Yvonne Craig episodes of BATMAN, a storyboard-edit of the movie, deleted scenes, CG animatics and other special features of random crap sitting on WB's hard drives that won't take any money to assemble.

Accept that any losses are better than coming off as a studio too incompetent to release the films it makes.

After that, WB-Discovery might want to start over with the DC feature properties. I think the best thing for WB-Discovery would be to hire Berlanti Productions to steward their feature films from now on. Berlanti Productions has been making $25 million SUPERMAN movies at a rate of five movies/15 episodes a year. 

In contrast, MAN OF STEEL cost $225 million and there is no real sequel. BATGIRL cost WB at least $90 to make and not release it. THE FLASH has cost $200 million, taken a decade, isn't in theatres and is already a slow-motion bus crash of a movie.

I don't think you can make a Henry Cavill SUPERMAN movie for $30 - 50 million, but you can definitely make a SUPERMAN AND LOIS movie for that. And a SUPERMAN AND LOIS movie with an entry-level storyline and a $50 million budget doesn't need to earn $1 billion to be profitable.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Interesting theory that Zaslav cancelled the BATGIRL release to try to save WB's DC slate from Ezra Miller: https://www.cbr.com/batgirl-dceu-contin … cellation/

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Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Ezra Miller reportedly filmed Flash reshoots in July, after his first two arrests and after the 12-year-old was granted a protective order against him.

1,046 (edited by Slider_Quinn21 2022-08-11 11:11:49)

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Geez.  Is there any chance the reshoots were to *end* their character's role in the DCEU?  Even if they release this movie, they can't realistically stick with Ezra as Barry, right?

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Hi, regardless of everything Ezra Miller may or may not have done (and obviously did), let's remember that Ezra Miller is non-binary and uses they-them pronouns.

I know that nobody here is transphobic and that these misgenderings are either typos or because Miller's character describes himself as "a good looking Jewish boy" in JUSTICE LEAGUE, meaning many people understandably assume that Miller identifies as male when off camera. Ezra doesn't identify as a man or a woman.

We should always respect people's chosen identities even if people are sometimes supervillains who have tormented Barry Allen in ways that would make Eobard Thawne take a step back and rethink his direction in life.

I assume that Miller will be recast, possibly with Elliot Page.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

ireactions wrote:

Hi, regardless of everything Ezra Miller may or may not have done (and obviously did), let's remember that Ezra Miller is non-binary and uses they-them pronouns.

I know that nobody here is transphobic and that these misgenderings are either typos or because Miller's character describes himself as "a good looking Jewish boy" in JUSTICE LEAGUE, meaning many people understandably assume that Miller identifies as male when off camera. Ezra doesn't identify as a man or a woman.

Dang it, I knew that and still messed up.  Edited.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I guess WB thinks that no one truly cares what Ezra Miller does in real life.  Maybe they’re right.

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Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

I didn't know Miller was like that.  It's hard to keep up these days.

Re: DC Superheroes in Film (Theatrical and Streaming)

Warner Bros. is giving serious thought to not releasing THE FLASH. I don't think they'll actually shelve it for a tax writeoff (SPRINGTIME FOR BARRY?), but they thought about it.
https://www.cbr.com/warner-bros-may-she … egal-woes/