Man of Steel was just the beginning of Warner Bros’ plans for a large interconnected DC movie universe revolving around some of the world’s most iconic heroes. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is set to act as a follow-up next year, while also expanding the world previously established by director Zack Snyder in Man of Steel.
Henry Cavill is returning as Superman, and Ben Affleck is set to make his debut as Batman. The showdown between the two superheroes has been the biggest selling point for the film so far, but also key to the movie will be its other featured players, like Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman and Jason Momoa’s Aquaman.
For Batman v Superman, the two titular superheroes will be the focal point of the movie. This week’s issue of Empire Magazine features both Batman and Superman on the cover, showing another look at their suit designs. Pictured behind the heroes are their respective cities, Gotham and Metropolis. As Zack Snyder revealed a few weeks earlier at Comic-Con, Gotham and Metropolis will be very close – described to be like Oakland and San Francisco – which could make for an interesting dynamic between the two. While talking with Empire, Snyder further discussed the new Batman in the film, saying, “There is just this gravitas to Batman. He is operatic.”
Superman, meanwhile, is still being criticized for the events in Man of Steel by the time Batman v Superman rolls around. As Henry Cavill puts it, “In this movie, everyone has split into different directions as to how they feel about this alien. Some people love him, some hate him. Other people fear him. Is he a tyrant?”
That mistrust is what ultimately drives Batman to face off against Superman. As Bruce Wayne puts it in the trailer, “He has the power to wipe out the entire human race.” Despite Superman’s best intentions during his massive fight with Zod, the collateral damage was enough to cause some people to doubt his intentions and, more importantly, fear the harm he might be capable of.
Batman and Superman aren’t the only thing on Snyder’s mind at the moment. Once he finishes work on that, he’ll soon begin on his next big blockbuster, Justice League. Snyder seems to be at the head of DC’s movie universe – which he calls the DC Extended Universe – but he won’t be in control of every single movie to come out of it. With so many films set to release within the next few years, other filmmakers are also getting the opportunity to put their own spin on the DCEU. “I want all the other directors of the other films to be able to stretch their legs and do what they want,” Snyder explained to Empire, “but at the same time there is a big interconnected universe.”
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will be in theaters on March 25th, 2016; Suicide Squad on August 5th, 2016; Wonder Woman – June 23rd, 2017; Justice League – November 17th, 2017; The Flash – March 23rd, 2018; Aquaman – July 27th, 2018; Shazam – April 5th, 2019; Justice League 2 – June 14th, 2019; Cyborg – April 3rd, 2020; Green Lantern – June 19th, 2020.