Last year was infamously rough for Warner Bros' burgeoning DC Comics Extended Universe. Both Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad were the subject of heavily mixed reviews, earning 27 percent and 26 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, respectively. And while they seemed to have come out ahead in the box office, many audience members left theaters disappointed.
With a heavy lineup for 2017 and 2018, fans are still hanging on to hope that Wonder Woman, Justice League, and Aquaman will redeem the franchise. However, with controversy brewing in The Batman camp - Ben Affleck’s departure as director, followed by Matt Reeves being tapped to step in - fans are a little worried.
Evangeline Lilly, known from her work as Hope van Dyne in Marvel Studios' Ant-Man franchise has revealed her theory on why DC movies might be having a hard time critically. When asked on how she came to be a part of Ant-Man at Emerald City Comic Con, Bleeding Cool reported Lilly reminisced on the factor that pulled her into the project:
“Who casts Paul Rudd as a superhero? Nobody. So I was like, I gotta check out these Marvel guys and see what they’re up to, and apparently they were up to really cool ****. ... How have I missed these guys who are making really cool superheroes who don’t take themselves too seriously?”
When prompted to give an example of the alternative, she named, “DC films.” Marvel Studios has been both lauded and criticized in the past for tapping into comedy in all of their releases, particularly The Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy. Meanwhile DC has stuck to the dramatic style arguably established in Christopher Nolan’s smash hit, The Dark Knight and continued in Zack Snyder's Man of Steel. Although, there’s really no way to judge which style is necessarily “better,” The Dark Knight maintains a 94 percent certified fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes, where Guardians of the Galaxy maintains a 91 percent, both drama and comedy proving satisfactory to audiences and critics alike.
Perhaps the responsibility relies in the hands of the filmmakers. A prime example is the recent 20th Century Fox film, Logan proving that a unique take can drive massive revenue (earning $33 million at the box office on its first Friday alone). Audiences seem to be excited at the prospects of the upcoming DC directors, especially Reeves slated to take over for Affleck on The Batman. Perhaps the new lineup of directors will offer a fresh take on the heroes and bring the franchise back to critical success.
With its long list of upcoming films, DC seems unshaken by 2016 and continues to push development in the comic book world. Margot Robbie has even stepped up to spearhead a Gotham City Sirens movie, directed by David Ayer. Those involved in the upcoming DC movies seem eager and excited for audiences to experience the films, and it looks like 2017 could turn everything around.
Source: Bleeding Cool
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) release date: May 05, 2017
- Black Panther (2018) release date: Feb 16, 2018
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Untitled Avengers Movie (2019) release date: May 03, 2019
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018