Director Zack Snyder has given a new generation a Superman movie to call their own with Man of Steel, though not without arousing the ire of many longtime Supe fans who're still getting used to the 21st-century version of Kal-El. However, at this stage, the hotter discussion topic is very much Snyder's developing sequel, tentatively known as Batman vs. Superman, with Ben Affleck getting prepared to step into the iconic cape and cowl, so that he may play an "older" version of the Caped Crusader (opposite Henry Cavill as a younger and more reckless Man of Tomorrow).
So why, then, has a good deal of the Batman vs. Superman talk shifted gears into a discussion of Wonder Woman lately? Well, it started when the report leaked that Snyder and Warner Bros. are looking to cast a new female character in the sequel, originally presumed to be one of Bruce Wayne's classic love interests (a la Vicki Vale). However, the description of the woman being someone who is tall and "possess physicality" sparked the rumor that the lady in question is secretly Diana of Themyscira - and the Internet rumor mill basically ran with the story from there.
Variety got the chance recently to pick the brains of WB President of Creative Development and Worldwide Production, Greg Silverman, with regard to what the future of the DC comic book superhero-verse is. Although Variety's question applied to a number of Justice League members (including, Green Lantern and The Flash), Silverman focused specifically on Wonder Woman in his reply:
“We have been doing a lot of thinking for years about how to best use all those characters and we love them. Wonder Woman is an amazing character. I think it’s a great opportunity both for box office success, but also to have an amazingly powerful female superhero.”
Longtime Screen Rant readers - and/or frequent listeners of the Screen Rant Underground Podcast - know that we've been kicking around ideas for the best approach to building a DC Cinematice Universe - be it with a Justice League film or solo adventures for characters like Aquaman and The Flash - for years now, while WB makes its own plans behind closed doors. Still, as of late, the studio has started to acknowledge that the drum for either a Wonder Woman movie and/or TV show is beating the loudest right now, when it comes to which Justice Leaguer should be realized on the big screen next (besides the Boy Scout in red and blue and his Dark Knight buddy, that is).
That said, if you thought Silverman's comment about plans for the budding DC movie-verse was noncommittal, wait until you read his response to Variety's question as to whether or not Wonder Woman will, in fact, be included in Batman vs. Superman (to some degree):
“We are taking it all very seriously and are trying to do a plan that’s respectful to those characters and maximizes the stories as best they can. So everything that has been speculated are things that we’ve thought about.”
Screen Rant's Andrew Dyce has already put together an all-encompassing article, which breaks down and analyzes the pros and cons associated with Diana being in the first live-action crossover between Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne. The short of it, where it concerns Silverman's refusal to answer the above question, is that the topic of Wonder Woman and how to bring her to life in the modern age of superhero movies is a highly-debated one right now (as was mentioned before). As such, the last thing that WB/DC wants to do is reveal their hand of cards too early and stop all the buzz-building speculation amongst the fans.
In other words, Silverman's dodge isn't something that you should read too much into, as far as how it bodes for the prospect of Wonder Woman being introduced in Batman vs. Superman, be it through a cameo or credits sequence appearance (taking a cue from the Marvel Cinematic Universe). It's apparent that this project really is further along in development than we might've suspected just a few months ago, which also suggests that Diana's inclusion (or lack thereof) is a matter that has already been settled, away from the public's prying eye.
Silverman alluded to just that (read: having more information than the public), during his defense of Affleck being cast as Batman:
“We knew going in that we had more information than the general public had. We knew what the take of the movie was, we knew what the character was going to be. We don’t take these decisions lightly. We thought about everybody — brand new people, established people. Ben is the perfect guy to play this role.”
That Snyder and Batman vs. Superman screenwriter David S. Goyer have a particular "take" on the Caped Crusader in mind is something that's figured into many an argument in favor of Affleck playing the Dark Knight in the film. By comparison, it's also a big part of the reason why Man of Steel composer Hans Zimmer feels so torn about scoring the movie (given his previous musical output for Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy).
Question is, should the Man of Steel sequel focus exclusively on establishing a new Bruce Wayne on the big screen (while continuing the story of Henry Cavill as Kal-El) - or is there room to plant the seeds for a Wonder Woman film, even if it amounts to an Easter Egg or background detail (a la the appearance of a Wayne Enterprises satellite in Man of Steel)?
Man of Steel 2/Batman vs. Superman will open in theaters on July 17th, 2015.