The latest news to circulate the entertainment world has hit comic-book fans hard. On Wednesday The Hollywood Reporter stated “Henry Cavill Out as Superman Amid Warner Bros.’ DC Universe Shake-Up”, evidently indicating that the beloved British actor of the franchise has parted ways with Warner Bros.
Whilst Warner Bros. are officially yet to confirm or deny this, fans of the latest Man of Steel franchise and Henry Cavill’s portrayal of such character have been sent in to a meltdown. At the moment fans are both confused over the claims as well as upset over the possibility in which it could be true.
Personally, I’m annoyed by the news, and more so, I do not doubt the validity of the claims by The Hollywood Reporter.
I say that I am annoyed because like others I’m sure, I absolutely hate poor continuity in films and franchises. The DC Extended Universe (DCEU) is trying its hardest to match the success of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, however, with average reviews and box office figures from the Batman vs Superman and Justice League films, they haven’t had the best start.
With not only an potential absence of Superman, but also rumours of Ben Affleck stepping down as Batman also surfacing, the main question that I’m sure many will be wondering, is will the speculation of Henry Cavill ending his time as Superman lead to a premature reboot of the DCEU, or will Warner Bros. find new actors for the Superman and Batman roles, and awkwardly slot them in to future, follow up films. As I said before, I hate poor continuity, so I feel that a new Batman or Superman or both, slotted into the ongoing Justice League story will be unforgettably aggravating.
Unlike Marvel, DC are also having serious continuity issues with their film vs TV series character portrayals. Firstly, The Flash series is actually decent, and whilst I really like Ezra Miller’s portrayal of the Flash in Justice League, it aggravates me knowing that there are two incarnations of the character. I wonder how beneficial it could have been if WB gave Grant Gustin the film role, and brought together the series and film narrative.
On the other hand, with excellent acting and directing, the success of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, in my opinion, is down to their continuity throughout their 20 films and numerous TV series so far. Apart from three cast changes that I can think of (Brody, Bruce Banner and Red Skull), Marvel have done exceptionally well to keep the same actors involved, as well as their ongoing narrative through their ‘phases’. Since the start of their Cinematic Universe 10 years ago, Marvel have clearly outlined how each film fits into their cinematic plans. The first origin films of some of the Avengers characters such as Captain America’s First Avenger, Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk and Thor are all part of phase 1. What I think has worked so well with the Marvel Cinematic Universe is that the clearly outlined phases have focused on leading up to the underlining narrative of the franchise – Thanos and the Infinity War. Back to the DCEU, the Batman vs Superman film teased at the Thanos-like character Darkseid that could be the focus on a future narrative. However, Warner Bros. never officially confirmed the villains future appearance, and whats more is that there has been no sign of the character or future Justice League films appearing any time soon.
I do think that WB and the DCEU should have brought us into their new film universe with solo films as a starting point, to allow background development on the the character that can later appear in collaborating films. They did do this at first with the Man of Steel film, but then jumped straight into the Man vs Batman and Justice League films. I wonder if they introduced the Aquaman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg film before the Justice league, the DCEU might have more of a foundation.
I do hope for DC’s sake, that the news of Henry Cavill’s departure from the role of Superman is false, and with Henry Cavill’s Instagram tease, it looks like perhaps it will be. Yes he may not be able to have any roles in other DC solo films such as Shazam, but hopefully we will eventually have a Cavill Man of Steel sequel. In the meantime, I hope DC’s list of upcoming solo films prove to be a success, and can perhaps lay a foundation for the Extended Universe, much like the phase 1 films of Marvel.
Throughout social media there is a apparent ‘war’ between ‘DC fans and Marvel Fans’ even though I, like many others that I see, are fans of both and want the best from both. However, as much as I hate to admit it, Marvel is clearly winning this figurative ‘war’ of cinematic universes.
What do you think about DC/MARVEL/WB news? Feel free to comment below!
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