While the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) may have gotten off to a shaky start, it seems like the shared universe of superhero films is finally starting to find its ground. 2017’s Wonder Woman received acclaim from both critics and fans, many of whom were pleased to see a positive representation of a female superhero in an otherwise male-dominated genre.
Similarly, 2018’s Aquaman, starring Jason Momoa and directed by James Wan, stands as the most successful DCEU film to date. At the time of writing, Aquaman has grossed over $1.138 billion — per Box Office Mojo — putting it close to $250 million ahead of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. In fact, Aquaman has grossed more money than most Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) films, and has only been eclipsed by all 3 Avengers films, Black Panther, Iron Man 3, and Captain America: Civil War.
It should come as no surprise, then, that Warner Bros. has decided to move forward with a sequel. Tentatively referred to as Aquaman 2, the follow-up to 2018’s Aquaman already has a release date on the books, and it seems that DCEU fans will be waiting for a few years before they get to see Arthur Curry return to the big screen.
As reported by Variety, Warner Bros. has set Aquaman 2‘s release for December 16, 2022. It’s unclear if James Wan will be returning to direct the film. That being said, Warner Bros. has confirmed that it will be written by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick, who also penned the first Aquaman. Details are scarce regarding the sequel’s plot, though Variety notes that Warner Bros. is also developing an Aquaman spin-off film. Titled The Trench, the horror spin-off will focus on the amphibious monsters that Arthur Curry/Aquaman battled in the first film.
While DCEU fans will have to wait a few years before Aquaman 2 is released, they won’t have to wait too long for the next DC film to hit the big screen. Shazam!, which stars Zachary Levi and Mark Strong, is set to release later this year on April 5. The film follows a 14-year-old orphan who gains the power to transform into a powerful adult superhero by saying the word, “Shazam.” The film’s official synopsis, per YouTube, provides more insight.
“We all have a superhero inside us, it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In Billy Batson’s (Angel) case, by shouting out one word — SHAZAM! — this streetwise 14-year-old foster kid can turn into the adult Super Hero Shazam (Levi), courtesy of an ancient wizard. Still a kid at heart — inside a ripped, godlike body — Shazam revels in this adult version of himself by doing what any teen would do with superpowers: have fun with them! Can he fly? Does he have X-ray vision? Can he shoot lightning out of his hands? Can he skip his social studies test? Shazam sets out to test the limits of his abilities with the joyful recklessness of a child.”
Shazam! is directed by David F. Sandberg, who previously directed Lights Out and Annabelle: Creation.