While the past decade has challenged the old way of thinking - that movies tend to put the talent and impact of TV to shame - that belief seems alive and well in the realm of comic book adaptations. With Marvel's endless march of superhero blockbusters and DC's budding big screen Justice League universe, it takes the star of Arrow to remind fans that for those desperately waiting to see DC Comics' famed team in action, it's Warner Bros.' TV side that's already delivering the goods.
There's plenty of reasons why comic book properties aren't seen as 'legitimate mainstream hits' until they top the box office, from fan hopes for the characters to a sense of validation. And while there may have been a time when DC characters like Green Arrow, Arsenal, The Flash, Firestorm, The Atom, Black Canary, and Ra's al Ghul being brought to life on a weekly basis would have satisfied fans, the question of Stephen Amell appearing in Zack Snyder's Justice League has persisted.
Despite the actor having already confirmed that he will not be appearing in Batman V Superman - and DC's Geoff Johns explaining the movie and TV worlds are entirely separate - the actor was once again asked about the possibility at FanExpo. Amell's response (courtesy of CBR) should hopefully bring the questions to an end, reminding viewers that if anything, it's the films that need to catch up:
"We are creating a Justice League on TV for us. I don't think there is a logistical reality to us participating in the feature side. That being said, I never wanted to have to feel like the show was justified, just because we participated in the movie. I don't think my character would participate on the cinematic side."
"What's that saying... six seasons and a movie? Our show right now has me, Arsenal, Flash. There's going to be Firestorm and Atom. The Justice League elements of it are very present on our shows already."
Beyond establishing a world in which S.T.A.R. Labs, Kord Industries, and 'Wayne Tech' all exist, Amell is right to claim that Arrow's writers have already planted seeds for a future Justice League. It was Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) who showed the benefits of teamwork among crimefighters in his introductory arc, and the plan to bring in Ray Palmer a.k.a. The Atom (Brandon Routh) seems more natural than a 'colossal threat uniting heroes.'
With Amell's words giving even the most devoted fans a few thoughts to ponder, the actor went on to send speculation over The CW's side of the DC universe running wild, when asked which hero he would personally love to see join the Arrow/Flash world:
"Now, boy we've referenced Ferris Air a lot. It would be really cool to have Green Lantern. Hopefully, that happens. I have no inside information, unless I do."
We wouldn't advise fans hold their breath on that one. Especially if there really is interest in adding Supergirl to the universe as well.
As if the confirmed heroes set to appear on The CW weren't enough to have fans counting their blessings, Amell added that the coming season (and potentially, years of The CW's DC universe) also includes a family act, not that his cousin Robbie Amell has landed the part of Ronnie Raymond a.k.a. Firestorm. The showrunners have claimed that The Flash was created with Firestorm in mind as part of the plot, and Amell reveals that membership in the DC family has its privileges:
"[Executive producer Greg Berlanti] told me about Robbie and Firestorm about two months before Robbie knew about it. Robbie texts me and goes, 'I GOT A JOB ON 'THE FLASH!'' All capitals and exclamation marks. I wrote back, 'I know,' and then welcomed him to the Justice League of America. Robbie and I, for being in the same business, the only time we've ever teamed up is in beer pong. We've never actually teamed up on screen together. I think eventually there's a chance that Oliver Queen and Mr. Firestorm may cross paths."
So while many may go on believing that a hero isn't a star until he hits the big screen, remember: when the Arrow/Flash crossover event has Ollie firing arrows while Barry moves even faster - and Firestorm's flight and attacks may be saved for the next fight - be thankful that fans can look forward to more next week, not several years ahead.
Do you side with Amell and feel that Arrow and The Flash won't need a movie to legitimize their stories? Or do you still hold out hope that the heroes, if not the actors, will one day fight in a Justice League film?
Arrow season 3 premieres October 8th, 2014 @8pm on The CW.
Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce for updates on Arrow as well as movie, TV, and gaming news.