On Wednesday, more than a week after San Diego Comic-Con, Warner Bros. announced release dates for a whole slew of DC Comics movies, expanding the universe of Batman and Superman all the way into 2020.
The announcement included nine films in all, scheduled from 2016 through 2020. That's a whole lot of super-powered shenanigans to look forward to in the next six years. Here's everything we know about the movies that were announced:
We know nothing, and neither do you, unless you're a fly on the wall in the Warner Bros. board room, or you're one of the unannounced filmmakers attached to one of these untitled films. Just like Jon Snow: You. Know. Nothing.
Okay, here's something we all know — release dates:
• "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" — March 25, 2016
• Untitled DC Film – August 5, 2016
• Untitled DC Film – June 23, 2017
• Untitled DC Film – November 17, 2017
• Untitled DC Film – March 23, 2018
• Untitled DC Film – July 27, 2018
• Untitled DC Film – April 5, 2019
• Untitled DC Film – June 14, 2019
• Untitled DC Film – April 3, 2020
• Untitled DC Film – June 19, 2020
That's a whole lot of "Untitled DC Film" to look forward to. In other words, beyond release dates, there's nothing we know — but plenty we can speculate.
There's the Nikki Finke list of possible superhero films to go on; but that's unconfirmed. There's Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's not-so-subtle teases of a "Shazam" movie; but that, too, is unconfirmed. There's Joseph Gordon-Levitt's supposed "Sandman" film, but guess what? Still unconfirmed.
Even "Justice League," which is considered an inevitability at this point given rumors surrounding "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice," not to mention the film's subtitle — even then, we just don't know exactly what's happening.
The DC Cinematic Universe is a murky beast. It's not for total lack of trying; Warner Bros. tried to get things moving with "Superman Returns" and "Green Lantern" a few years back, but those films didn't have the kind of success to warrant further follow-ups. Right now, they're trying again, first with "Man of Steel," followed by the infusion of Batman and Wonder Woman into Kal-El's world in "Dawn of Justice."
And now, we have release dates. We have the promise of nine movies set in the same universe as Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne and Diana of Themyscira. But until we hear names — of movie titles, of characters, of the talent involved — these nine DC Comics movies are little more than mirages, ideas we already could have guessed at before (way before) Comic-Con; these movies are little more than flags in the ground.
With time, the details will become clearer, as we move closer and closer toward the flags. Until then, the game remains what it was before yesterday: A waiting game. A long, lonely, frustrating waiting game.