[NOTE: The following post contains potential SPOILERS Batman V Superman and Justice League.]
Shared cinematic universes have changed moviegoing. Until the formation of the MCU, moviegoers typically consumed one franchise film at a time - rarely looking beyond the current release for anything more than hope of a numbered sequel. Now, movie fans regularly talk about in-development projects (some that are half-a-decade from hitting theaters) and, if it weren't for record-breaking ticket sales, some might wonder if cross-over storytelling was reducing the impact of any one film individually. As a result, even though the big screen meeting of Batman V Superman is still months from debuting in theaters, fans are already looking past Dawn of Justice - on to what Warner Bros. and DC have planned through 2020.
Recently, the studio offered a sneak peek at Wonder Woman and Suicide Squad, with quick teases for Aquaman, The Flash, Cyborg, and Green Lantern Corps; however, as part of the on-going in-flux of Batman V Superman build-up, the studio is also offering an early glimpse at their high-profile team-up movie, Justice League, by teasing a villain that Earth's superhero team will likely face.
The remainder of this post includes potential SPOILERS for Batman V Superman and Justice League.
The latest issue of Empire has already offered intriguing new details of the face-off between the Dark Knight and Man of Steel - with specific comments from director Zack Snyder and other Dawn of Justice contributors. However, one of the magazine's biggest teases was sidelined to a standalone image, offered with no caption or comment, depicting iconography that should be very recognizable to any longtime DC comic reader.
Currently, the reveal is only available as print scans (which we are not posting here). We'll update the post if Warner Bros. releases the image officially.
Until then, check out concept artwork of the Justice League villain by clicking on the image below.
One of two villains mentioned for the Justice League team-up, it shouldn't come as much of a surprise to hear that DC could introduce Darkseid, or at least an easter egg-like tease, in Batman V Superman. There's certainly no guarantee the villain will appear but a scene hinting at Darkseid's presence in the DC universe makes sense.
Since comparisons to the MCU continue to dominate discussion of the DC Extended Universe plan, it's worth noting that if Warner Bros. intends to get the character onto the big screen for Justice League: Part 1, they'll need to start introducing casual moviegoers and fans to Darkseid sooner rather than later. Some moviegoers believe Marvel has spent too much time teasing their Infinity War baddie Thanos, while others believe a galaxy-threatening rogue like Thanos should require as much build-up as possible. Either way, since (presumably) Thanos won't get a starring villain role until IW: Part 1 in 2018, DC has nothing to lose by getting their big bad into the main story sooner - so that he's ready for a headlining debut in 2017 (one year ahead of Thanos).