5 Reasons Why ‘Aquaman’ Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

Published 1 year ago by , Updated September 4th, 2014 at 7:31 am,

Aquaman Movie Justice League Discussion 5 Reasons Why Aquaman Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

With the success of both Man of Steel and The Dark Knight Trilogy comes renewed evidence that DC Comics and Warner Bros.’ flagship superheros are respectively worthy of supporting big-budget movie franchises – but what about those other heroes like Wonder Woman, The Flash or even Aquaman?

The future of DC’s Movieverse is still uncertain – which is why we have plenty of time to discuss the merits of each and every one of these “second tier” heroes on the DC roster. In this installment, we’ll pitch you on 5 reasons that Aquaman could be THE next big DC/WB movie franchise.

Do you agree with our reasoning? Or is the “King of Fish” too silly for the big screen? READ ON and then decide for yourself…

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The Story

Aquaman Justice League Jason Momoa Discussion 5 Reasons Why Aquaman Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

Part of the formula for success for DC superhero movies has been the adherence to telling character-centric stories set in a “real-world” context. In keeping with that formulaic blueprint, it’s not hard to see why Aquaman could be a winner.

At its core, the identity struggles of a man from two different worlds is relatable enough (see: Man of Steel) – but in a day and age where “the environment” is a hot-button term, and the wrath of the sea (hurricanes, tsunamis) are daily fears, Aquaman’s story can encompass topics and themes that no other superhero really can (mankind’s relationship to Nature, etc.).

Forget the silly CW pilot or that faux James Cameron film on Entourage - a serious-minded Aquaman movie could have something relevant and timely to say, given the chance.

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The Characters

Aquaman Movie vs Ocean Master 5 Reasons Why Aquaman Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

There’s no good story without good characters, and Aquaman has good characters to spare. The man himself is an obvious metaphor for identity struggles (particularly in a modern world of increasing multi-culturalism), but Aquaman’s mythos is filled with strong female characters (Mera); alien races (Atlanteans, the Trench); an evil half-brother (Ocean Master); and even a black archnemesis (Black Manta). As far as “dramatis personae” go, Aquaman is pretty solid.

Moreover, thanks to modern creators like Geoff Johns, the characters in Aquaman have already been fleshed-out and modernized enough that they could attract a cast of high-caliber actors, with the central role open to any chiseled leading man on the brink of stardom (read our suggestions for actors to play Aquaman).

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The Setting

Aquaman Movie Message Discussion 5 Reasons Why Aquaman Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

Aquaman would no doubt be set on dry land during Arthur Curry’s formative years (living with his human father, Tom Curry), but after a (now-standard) hop through his troubled adolescence (hearing sea creatures, being drawn like an addict to the ocean) we could literally dive into a whole new world for superhero films to explore: the deep sea.

Being a real-life quasi-hydrophobe, the thing that terrifies me about the ocean is that it’s literally an alien terrain whose full depths we have never fully uncovered. That mystery leaves infinite possibilities for imaginative Cinematic storytelling.

The beautiful lost city of Atlantis? Terrifying regions of the deep? Freakish creatures and beasts born of the ocean (see: recent Aquaman storyline “The Trench”)? This movie could have all of the above.

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The Technology

Aquaman Movie Setting Discussion 5 Reasons Why Aquaman Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

If you haven’t heard, this guy named Jim Cameron is hard at work on some revolutionary technology for Avatar 2, a small sequel film that will try to bring the world visual effects related to the ocean and water that we’ve never seen before. While it’s a whole separate discussion what this new filmmaking tech will mean for the world of Pandora, one clear fringe benefit of Cameron’s tinkering could be revolutionary and kick-ass Aquaman movie experience (in 3D).

Again, the freaky (or fascinating) thing about the ocean is how mysterious it remains, even in modern times. Cameron will get first jump on showing action sequences set in much more realistic underwater settings, but DC/WB could be the first to really capture what it is for a superhero to use his ocean-based powers in combat. Aquaman kicking ass like the ‘Superman of the sea’ that he is? Yes please.

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Continuity

Justice League Movie Aquaman Matt Damon 5 Reasons Why Aquaman Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

The difficulty of the DC Movieverse going forward is not so much figuring out how to chronicle the origins of its major characters (the “Nolan approach” seems to be doing that just fine) – the real challenge from here on out will be figuring out how to position those individual character stories around one major milestone: the world debut of Superman.

Whether an Aquaman movie takes place before or after the events of Man of Steel, one good thing about it is that its unique setting (an underwater world) is an almost guaranteed way to side-step the annoying question of ‘Why doesn’t Superman just show up and handle it?’ Superman has a world to watch over – but it ain’t the world of the sea. An Aquaman saga could play out under the ocean without Superman intervention, and nobody would likely be bothered.

Furthermore, the emergence of the Man of Steel and world-altering events of the Kryptonian invasion are all events that could catalyze events in an Aquaman story, by serving as the inspirtation of an Atlantean attack on the surface, or Superman inspiring Aquaman to make a choice about his identity etc… In short: this character would be easy to position within the Justice League movie canon.

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Justice League Movie Members New 52 5 Reasons Why Aquaman Could Be the Next Big DC Superhero Movie

Below you’ll find a quick recap of why we believe an Aquaman movie could be the next successful superhero blockbuster for DC Comics and Warner Bros. Do you agree with our reasoning? Let us know in the comments!

  •  The Story – Aquaman is a richly complex character with an epic origin story.
  • The Characters – They’re diverse, three-dimensional, modern and perfect star vehicles.
  • The Setting – Superhero action beneath the seas? Yes Please!
  • The Technology – Given where film tech is headed, the visual splendor of Aquaman could be unmatched by anything else in the genre.
  • Continuity – We need the next chapter in the Justice League saga, and this is a perfect fit.

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We’ll Keep you updated on the status of the DC Movieverse as more information is released. For now, catch Man of Steel in theaters.

[All Artwork is the Property of DC Comics]

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TAGS: aquaman, justice league

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  1. Those are great selections for artwork.

    Does the author or anybody else know what comic editions those are from?

    • New 52 Aquaman ongoing series written by Geoff Johns and art be Ivan Reis. The first two volumes are out now, you should get them, they’re great reads and a good jumping on point for the character.

  2. I love you Kofi. Great article!

  3. Bruce Campbell as an older Aquaman lol

  4. I agree with all the reasons except the last one.

    I personally like that Aquaman starts off as a Super-neutral, protecting the worlds oceans from the atrocities of man. He can be introduced as part of the JL plot (and even be initially hostile!) but can become a member at the end of the movie.

    Giving him his own movie before a JL movie though I strongly disagree with.

    (not to mention that doing a fully underwater movie is cost prohibitive. Doing this movie right could easily run into the 300 million + range and I don’t think WB/DC are willing to foot that sort of bill on an untried character (see GL). The only way this movie will happen is if Cameron manages to invent an affordable underwater tech for the next Avatar installment)

  5. I want the older bearded aquaman with a hook hand lol

    • beard, yes, hook, not so much. unless it’s an optional hook that he continues to use after he, at one point, doesn’t LOSE his hand, but CAN’T use his hand due to extreme injury. I’d be fine with that. water alchemy hand or augmentation of some sort in combination with or without would be cool, too.

      I wish that they’d update his suit a little bit.

      If they went with Atlantis being an actual EMPIRE and not one place (based on theoretical historical theories) that would be so bad-ass.

      Also, Aquaman should at some point be able to manipulate all water, period.

      They tend to go too much one way or the other with Aquaman, they need to take everything that works and kinda mash it up.

      • Mera is the one that controls water. If Aquaman could do it then her character is pointless.

        His suit could be like the one from Injustice: Gods Among Us. That was pretty cool.

  6. I guess an Aquaman movie could be ok, although I never could really get into Aquaman, he is pretty much a combination of Michael Phelps and Dr Doolittle.

  7. Kofi! You actually followed through with that idea in the podcast and wrote this article! Awesome!

    Since DC apparently has realize what works for their characters- the strong, introspective, thematic-heavy action as opposed to Marvel Studio style film- it would be interesting to now picture their characters done in that style. I am honestly now thinking how Green Lantern can now be re-envisioned into the universe established in Man of Steel.

    As for Aquaman I think this article is pretty spot on!
    Man of Steel showed how you can take a character whose pop culture image can be updated and taken in a serious direction while maintaining loyal to the essence of the character and the mythology.

    The New 52 from what I heard pretty much establish Aquaman in a cinematic way already!
    -The story and characters will be fresh certainly and defy some conventions of the genre in a way. I can definitely see as “Game of Thrones” underwater.
    - I would like some tension building up with the Amazons- sort of similar to the Flashpoint scenario. I mean it makes sense: mythological societies isolated from the rest of the world. Not actually show any conflict but let both stories reflect one another so when Wonder Woman and Aquaman meet it instantly had some tension built up. Continuing with my “Game of Thrones” analogy:

    Atlantis-The Battle for the Throne to be King: Westeros and War of the Five Kings
    Diana and the Amazons: Daenarys rising in Essos
    The Trench creatures: Whitewalkers, etc.

    I would definitely like the film to introduce sorcery which is part of the lore but in a grounded believable way.

    • ” I am honestly now thinking how Green Lantern can now be re-envisioned into the universe established in Man of Steel. ”

      What is different between the two? I can see re-envisioning Batman into the MOS Universe however I dont see why you would need to re-envision GL based on MoS universe.

  8. All I want to know is who going to play his wife Mera. Or are they gonna leave her out and hve him be A bachlor. He is supposed to be one of the few married superheros. Hawkman,Flash and The Elongated Man/Ralph Dinby are the only others I can think of.

  9. AQUAMAN!!! LMFAO!!! no thanks. I have read the new comics and he is still a stupid character. There are way better characters in the DC stable to work on. Aquaman should never be attempted

  10. Really not trying to offend any aquafans but I’ve never understood the appeal of Aquaman, trying as best as I can since all the DCfans are screaming for this film to happen but to me, it’s still a stretch.
    Also, I think there’s a possibility that Aquaman was already alluded to in Man of Steel in the scene after Superman saves the workers on the oil rig. He’s floating adrift in the water and some whales show up then it skips forward and doesn’t show how he got back on land. Since he hadn’t gotten flying down yet and he seemed to be incapacitated (so I don’t think he swam back), it could be that Aquaman witnessed what happened and sent the whales to save Superman. Just an idea and seems like a decent way to tie the two together.

    • Not a bad idea

      • Well in all fairness it doesnt show how he got from the boat where his crew was to the oil rig savin those people either. Did he swim over there? did he jump far?

    • Just like with that Ferris chick at the end, pseudo hints at other JL members.

  11. Aquaman definitely needs a movie, now that he’s part of the founding members of the justice league. And a good director and writer can make him “cool”

    • He can never be cool. I say they should bring Hawkman into the picture since the Thanagarians were hinted at in the prequel comic.

      • He is a long lost king who takes his throne back from his evil half-brother and saves the world from ravenous hungry monsters from the deep. Sounds pretty cool to me.

      • I think he’s really cool if portrayed correctly. Actors that would portray him excellently include Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Liam McIntyre. They could easily make Aquaman look cool.

        • … and everyone wants to ignore the fact that in order to make this character relevant you have to force scenes and scenarios.

          If there isn’t some dastardly thing happening right next to the ocean, Aquaman has nothing to do, so…

          … when you put a scene next to the ocean, one says to themselves -

          “Of course, they have to do this here otherwise Aquaman has nothing to do.”

          One of the most blatantly obvious problems with this character.

          • Or there could be a villian tired of the humans polluting their ocean, destroying their world so he wants to take over Atlantis from Aquaman and declare war on the humans. They can say maybe some hurricanes and tsunamis were caused by this villian as warnings to humans to stop etc. This imo, could be an awesome movie. Something like that.

            • Then you have the chance for some unique action and effects for Atlantis and action scenes with giant waves, sharks, etc. I think done correctly it could end up being fantastic.

          • Dr Mindbender, you’re implying that Aquaman is useless in a lot of situations, but he isn’t. He still has superhuman strength, is bulletproof, can leap like Superman used to, etc.

  12. The best choice, by far to play Aquaman, would be Nikolaj Coster-Waldau(Jamie Lannister-Game of Thrones).

    After him I would say Liam McIntyre(Spartacus).

    But, Nikolag is the best choice.

    • Liam McIntyre would be great, he has the chiseled looks for it, though he’s not blonde.

      • Just use a little hair dye to make him dirty blondish, doesn’t have to be pure blond. Liam has the perfect persona to portray him though, and the look.

        But for pure blond thats why I think Nikolaj is the best choice. He has the acting and persona to portray him as well.

    • He certainly knows a thing or too about losing a hand !

      • two*

  13. I want FLASH!!!!

  14. These are very good reasons on an Aquaman movie. I’d love to see a n Aquaman movie!

  15. With all the destruction from the Kryptonian engines of destruction, a tragic story of an ocean king and his ruined kingdom could be brought to the surface in an edgy tie-in that sets a King against an alien savior, in the form of a fish-eyed staring grudge in the world rebuilding Justice League.

  16. Yes he should be the next movie!!!

  17. Wonder Woman , Flash, then Aquaman that’s my order of movies they should make after MOS . All hail Supes.

  18. Just in and out on my own picks:

    1. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
    2. Alexander Skarsgard

    And use a lot of set pieces, especially for city shots. With a lot of underwater live action scenes as well.

  19. they can connect the story with zod’s thing at the indian ocean wreaking havoc might have pissed off aquaman and his people underneath. this may be the reason why he decides to pay a visit to the upper world and meet mos in the process (mos being a cameo). just a thought

  20. I want it.

  21. Naw. Do GL #2 and Flash next.

  22. Any love for a Doctor Fate and Hourman team-up flick out there?

  23. Maybe a Martian Manhunter, Atom, and Hawkman team-up flick?

  24. Aquaman is a boss I would love to see his story done right on the big screen

  25. Whats with the hatred on AQUA-MAN, we never seen a comic book character based on the ocean world I think it will look amazing just by imagining the Special Effects. I say yeah make it happen with a good story and A-listers this can be a hit. Alan Ritchson or Alex Pettyfer my pick

  26. I’m still not sold on it.

  27. All those Family Guy skits featuring Aquaman just keep on popping into my head and the idea seems less and less credible as a film project. It would need a seriously good script to work.

    • Don’t forget Robot Chicken,(owned by Time Warner) which this year did a DC special that did nothing but further the idea that Aquaman is a joke.

      Then you have the brilliant masterminds known as Trey Parker and Matt Stone, who have there own version of the Super Friends using the deities of the world: Jesus, Mohammand, John Smith, Moses, Krishna, Budda, and Semen.

      HEY THAT’S SEA-MAN!

      That’s what I said, semen.

      “Sea-man” is drawn identically to Aquaman, and Matt and Trey included him just so the rest of the Super Friends could rip on him.

      • ^ Joseph Smith, how could I forget that he was a prophet?

        DUM DUM DUM DUM DUM

    • You’re basing your idea of a character of a cartoon that parodies things, a cartoon that is parodying a version of Aquaman from Superfriends, which doesn’t even portray the character correctly.

  28. THE DARK KNIGHT
    MAN OF STEEL
    KING OF ATLANTIS

  29. I still can’t imagine a live- action movie that takes place mostly underwater. How would they even speak?

    • Atlanteans breathe water as well as they can breathe air. Sound travels faster through water too, so if anything they could speak better.

    • Remember four successful made-for-tv films under the “Man from Atlantis” banner? I think it could be done.

    • Deep Impact. Look it up.

    • Blue screen, and the New 52 comics kept him on land mainly for awhile I also believe it said he could go weeks without a drop off water before his powers start to fade

    • It would be in that garbled “bubbly” voice you always hear people are speaking underwater.