It looks like the gods of the DCEU giveth as they taketh away, since the recent news of Ben Affleck’s changing links to The Batman movie have been followed close behind by updates on the progress being made with James Wan’s Aquaman. Not long after word arrived that the director may have found his top choice for the aquatic villain Black Manta, we now have an even more substantial update – both in the profile of the actress in question, and what it could mean for the film, and the film series moving forward.
Jason Momoa is set to star in the ages-old epic of Arthur Curry, the half-human, half-Atlantean vacant king, with Amber Heard as his leading lady (and potential queen) Mera, and Patrick Wilson as his nemesis, Ocean Master. Now it seems Warner Bros. and Wan are setting their sights on Nicole Kidman to play the woman who got the story rolling in the first place: Arthur Curry’s mother, Queen Atlanna.
The word comes via THR, claiming Kidman is in early talks for the part with Warner Bros., having been Wan’s top pick for the part for some time, and the studio now making the offer official. It’s not the first time that Kidman’s name has entered talks surrounding a royal role in the DC Movie Universe, with her name mentioned for the part of either Wonder Woman’s mother, or an Amazonian general. The role in question here is much clearer, since the story of the son of a lighthouse keeper and an Atlantean princess is expected to feature both parents in at least cameo roles.
That being said, there’s a chance the the updates and modern twists on the character and Aquaman origin could offer a more substantial role in Arthur Curry’s corner of the DCEU. While her place in the story began as something of a fairy tale/flashback, dying shortly after Arthur was born and left with his father, Tom Curry, the modern comics under writer Geoff Johns revealed Atlanna to be very much alive in DC’s New 52 Universe. That twist came about thanks to a brand new island infused with ancient magic, mystical relics, and even a volcano god that took the combined talents of Arthur and his mother to defeat.
Although we won’t expect that particular story to be adapted for film whole cloth, it’s possible Atlanna’s role will extend beyond a prologue, or flashback. That being said, an actress like Kidman could bring plenty to even that small, yet pivotal, a role. Not to mention the benefit of placing Nicole Kidman alongside Amber Heard as the image of Atlantean women… establishing Jason Momoa as every bit the outsider he appears, when juxtaposed with the fairer featured, blonde haired sea people.
The role of Arthur’s father has yet to be cast, and may tell us just as much, if not more about Zack Snyder and James Wan’s updated origin story. The first look at Justice League stretched the traditional role of Aquaman by introducing him as a hero bringing food to the people of Iceland – those who live off the sea, but in a winter climate, as opposed to open ocean. Based on Aquaman’s tattoos and armor, it would seem the romance that created him was between Atlantean royalty and a Pacific Islander, meaning even a brief prologue could offer a nevertheless unforgettable addition to the hero’s legacy.
We’ll keep you updated as more information or casting news arrives, but let us know in the meantime: do you think Nicole Kidman is the right pick for the part? And how big a role should Atlanna play in the movie’s story?