The pressure is on for Warner Bros. Studios to deliver with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice in March 2016, as the DC Extended Universe appears set to cast a large shadow across Marvel Studios and its incredibly successful MCU. Even as the likes of this past summer's Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ant-Man continue to attract flocks of comic book readers to theaters, the power behind Zack Snyder's new film might just be enough to throw everyone's favorite Marvel Comics characters from their seat atop the pile of superhero feature fare.
With plenty of recent production stills, leaked information about the Wonder Woman stand-alone title, and information regarding the film's central plot concerning the nefarious Lex Luthor, a new age of DC Comics on the big screen has finally arrived. And the newest actor to take on the role of Batman is singing the praises of the studio's efforts.
According to Variety, Ben Affleck had plenty of good things to say about the DC Extended Universe going forward, and took special care to mention his investment in the project both professionally and creatively. The actor and director is currently signed on to star in two subsequent features after his initial appearance as Bruce Wayne, both in Justice League Part One and a Batman stand-alone motion picture. When asked for comment on what Batman v Superman represents for the studio going forward, Affleck remarked:
"You’ll see next year [Warner Bros. Pictures] are going to have a great year. They are now developing…probably the single greatest, under-exploited IP asset in the entertainment business: The DC comic world. And now they have started to exploit that, and you are going to see that blossom. And, when it does, it’s going to be massive."
In tandem with a cover article on the studio's acting CEO, Kevin Tsujihara, Affleck was similarly forthcoming with genial commentary, exuding his comfort with Tsujihara as an executive behind the scenes of Snyder's film. On Tsujihara, Affleck added:
"I was really impressed...by the intelligence of his notes, and the fact that he cared. It was not like some guys, especially at that level, where it would be, ‘We need a franchise movie…we just need a movie with the names Batman and Superman on it, and it doesn’t matter what it is. For him, that wasn’t it. He was willing to take longer to make the movie to get it right, to make it a movie of higher quality."
Obviously, there's still the pressure of screening the film to thousands of eager viewers, a pressure that Affleck undoubtedly feels. The actor stated that if the film doesn't play well with audiences "that will be extremely disappointing," though he is willing to leave the film's ultimate critical value up to "the experts to decide," presumably referring to both critics and DC Comics readers alike.
After the polarizing display offered up by Man of Steel, Snyder's new film comes with the added pressure of making nice with those left less than satisfied with Henry Cavill's turn as Krypton's last son. But with co-stars like Affleck, Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, and Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor, Cavill and Snyder might just make good on the super-sized grandeur of their next comic book installment.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will see theatrical release on March 25th, 2016, followed by Suicide Squad on August 5th, 2016; Wonder Woman on June 23rd, 2017; Justice League Part One on November 17th, 2017; The Flash on March 23rd, 2018; Aquaman on July 27th, 2018; Shazam on April 5th, 2019; Justice League Part Two on June 14th, 2019; Cyborg on April 3rd, 2020; and Green Lantern on June 19th, 2020. The Superman and Batman solo films have release dates TBD.