2017 will bring two new films in the DC Extended Universe - Patty Jenkins' Wonder Woman arrives in May ahead of November's mega team-up Justice League. Both films have a lot at stake as follow-ups to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, especially the latter; along with doing right by the JLA, director Zack Snyder needs to improve upon a polarizing effort that left many critics disappointed.
The plot and relentlessly grim tone of Batman v Superman left a bad taste in some people’s mouths, which is why Justice League is expected to have a lighter tone. Where the film was widely praised was its visuals; Cinematographer Larry Fong delivered a strong effort with the film's often noir-ish look that lifted elements directly from the comics, so it's refreshing to hear that the visuals of Justice League are expected to follow in its footsteps.
Justice League cinematographer Fabian Wagner posted a photo of Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman to his Instagram page on Friday with a caption that teased the cinematography of Justice League. He said that Fong’s work on Batman v Superman greatly inspired his work on the follow-up, particularly his use of darkness and bright lighting, although also hints at what he's brought to the project.
Last year I was fortunate enough to work with Zack Snyder on his new movie 'Justice League'. I had always been a fan of his work and of his long time cinematographer Larry Fong. I tried to put my own stamp onto it but Larry's dark and beautiful lighting was a huge source of inspiration. I had the best time working with all of those guys #justiceleague #zacksnyder #larryfong
Wagner’s cinematography in Justice League may ultimately look similar to that of Fong's work in Batman v Superman, but the DoP still insists that he trued to put his own stamp on the look of the film. Game of Thrones fans will definitely be hoping that is the case; Wagner was the director of photography for the show’s Emmy-winning episode 'The Battle of the Bastards', and was nominated in 2015 for the season five episode 'Hardhome'. We've only had one trailer to go on so far, but from what we've seen the film definitely looks impressive.
Though Fong’s cinematography may have ultimately contributed to the unrelenting gloominess of Batman v Superman, it was the plot and overall tone of it that ultimately proved the most divisive. Based on what we've heard about Justice League and seen of Wonder Woman, it looks like the DCEU is taking these concerns into account. The success of Justice League hinges on Snyder’s ability to correct the issues of Batman v Superman, but as the cinematography wasn’t necessarily one of them it makes sense for Justice League to maintain that.
Source: Fabian Wagner
- Justice League (2017) release date: Nov 17, 2017
- Wonder Woman (2017) release date: Jun 02, 2017
- Cyborg (2020) release date: Apr 03, 2020
- Green Lantern Corps. (2020) release date: Jul 24, 2020
- Aquaman (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018