[UPDATE: Rumor debunked! Daredevil season 2 will debut one week before Batman V Superman arrives.]
2016 is a big year for Marvel Studios and DC Entertainment alike, with each of these comic book-based companies gearing up to release important new projects on both the big screen (Captain America: Civil War, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, etc.) as well as the small screen (Luke Cage, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow). Naturally, there’s some competition between Marvel and DC, as they are both aiming to appeal to the masses of comic book/superhero film genre fans; though, as we’ve discussed in the past, ultimately the rivalry between Marvel and DC benefits the fans because it encourages both companies to make higher-quality (and more diverse) movies, TV shows, and “products” in general.
So far, Marvel and DC have usually scheduled around the other’s project release dates, though fans will no doubt remember that Civil War and Batman v Superman were (for a while) once slated to open in theaters the same day. While that’s no longer happening, it would seem that a popular Marvel Netflix series could, in fact, be coming back the same day that a major DC film hits the big screen.
CB is reporting that Daredevil season 2 will debut on Netflix on March 25th, 2016 – the same day that Batman v Superman opens in theaters. While this news isn’t official and may turn out to be inaccurate, it’s not outside the realm of possibility either. EW previously reported Daredevil season 2 (which, like other Netflix shows, is going to be made available in its entirety on the same day) will begin streaming in March 2016. Season 1 likewise debuted on Netflix in the early goings of spring – specifically, April 10th, in that case – so a March arrival makes sense enough here.
Even if this Daredevil news proves to be true, it’s worth noting that the situation is quite different than if Marvel had scheduled a major superhero tentpole to hit theaters on the same day as Batman v Superman. For starters, Daredevil season 2 won’t take potential screens away from the Zack Snyder-directed Man of Steel followup like Civl War or Doctor Strange (Marvel Studios’ other 2016 film release) would have done. Similarly, while Marvel’s TV shows and films take place in the same continuity, there is clearly disparity between the studios’ movie and TV divisions – and a number of people who turn out for the company’s big screen offerings don’t also tune in for the TV shows anyway, be they on Netflix or ABC (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Agent Carter).
On the other hand, such a release approach for Daredevil season 2 could affect the turnout for Batman v Superman – encouraging more people to stay at home, rather than venture out to the theater. Some would argue that Marvel’s Jessica Jones Netflix series clearly impacted the opening box office weekend take for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 last year, when both debuted on the same day – only for Mockingjay – Part 2‘s gross to fall noticeably short of expectations. Netflix boasts millions of users, so the impact of a new season for one of its most popular original offerings on the domestic box office in general should not be under-estimated.
With all that in mind: Batman v Superman is the first movie “event” in 2016 and will undoubtedly draw in a sizable crowd during its opening weekend, regardless of direct small screen competition. It should again be emphasized that Daredevil season 2 might end up debuting on Netflix on a different weekend, once an official date is announced – but until then, let us know your own thoughts and feelings about this potential Marvel/DC “showdown”, in the comments below.
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.
Daredevil season 1 and Jessica Jones season 1 are now available on Netflix. Luke Cage season 1 and Daredevil season 2 will debut on Netflix in 2016. Release dates for Iron Fist and The Defenders on Netflix have not yet been announced.