In the three years since Arrow debuted on The CW, Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg's DC TV empire has been growing at an impressive rate. Arrow spinoff The Flash is still only in its first season, but already there are plans for another spinoff within the same universe - and, the two producers are also in charge of CBS's Supergirl TV show.
Whereas The Flash, Arrow and Supergirl are all clearly focused on one superhero in particular (with others dropping in for either guest or regular roles), the upcoming spinoff will be a team-up show featuring Ray Palmer AKA The Atom (Brandon Routh); Martin Stein AKA one half of Firestorm (Victor Garber); Leonard Snart AKA Captain Cold (Wentworth Miller); Sara Lance AKA Black Canary (Caity Lotz); and three other superheroes from DC comics who have't yet been featured in either of the current shows.
According to a new Variety interview with Berlanti, Captain Cold will also be joined by a villain who's brand new to the DC TV universe. The showrunner said that he wants the spinoff's villain to be "distinct," and that it will be a "big character who hasn't been used yet." As for the rest of the cast and the superheroes that have yet to be announced, Berlanti explained that the intention was to make the group as ragtag as possible.
"In picking them, it was very much about picking, ‘who are some of the most popular characters we’ve created?’ and also, tonally, who went with who? How disparate could we make it? And we’re also introducing these three new characters that we’re casting right now… I think it’s really important that we have another female hero on the show, and this one is really exciting. I can’t wait for people to find out — we just have to cast it right, as always. And then you want that Rat Pack-y kind of vibe of all this crew hanging out, as disparate and as different as they are."
Casting calls for the spinoff have offered some very vague details about who the three new superheroes will be: a time traveler, a female warrior, and a mystery hero. The generic nature of the descriptions makes it hard to pin down exactly which comic book characters these are, though our best guess for the time traveller is Rip Hunter. Similarly there are a lot of "big" villains in the DC universe who haven't yet appeared in Arrow or The Flash, though it's possible that the spinoff's new villain will be specifically an enemy of the Atom (for example, Chronos), Firestorm, or one of the other featured superheroes.
Speaking at PaleyFest last week, where exciting new trailers for The Flash and Arrow were shown, Berlanti compared the spirit of the spinoff to movies like The Magnificent Seven and Ocean's Eleven, where the strength and appeal is derived from the ensemble cast. "We have a lot of lone gunmen and sheriffs in town," the showrunner teased.
We'll keep you updated on the Flash/Arrow spinoff as development continues.