In a significant development for DC Extended Universe (DCEU) fans, director James Wan has officially clarified that his Aquaman movies exist in a distinct cinematic universe apart from Zack Snyder’s DCEU. This revelation marks a pivotal moment for the franchise and leaves questions lingering about the future of Aquaman and the potential for more standalone adventures.
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The Zack Snyder DCEU, which commenced in 2013 with “Man of Steel,” introduced us to a new era of DC superheroes, including Henry Cavill as Superman. This universe, often referred to as the “Snyder Verse,” was highlighted by its unique tone and storytelling approach.
However, with the recent release of “The Flash,” featuring Ezra Miller as the Scarlet Speedster and a post-credit scene with Jason Momoa reprising his role as Aquaman, it’s clear that Zack Snyder’s vision for the DCEU has reached its conclusion. Momoa himself has expressed his gratitude to Snyder for launching his career as Arthur Curry within this cinematic universe.
Aquaman movies are a part of a separate universe
James Wan’s Aquaman movies have always held a distinct identity, and the director has now firmly established that they are set in their own unique universe. During an interview with EW.com while promoting the upcoming “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom,” Wan explained his vision for the Aquaman franchise.
He likened the situation to living in a house undergoing renovations, acknowledging the changes happening in the broader DC world. However, Wan stressed that from the beginning, the intention was to create a self-contained Aquaman universe, unencumbered by the developments in other DC films. His aspiration was to explore the expansive world of the Seven Kingdoms, and it appears he has succeeded in doing just that.
Not connected to The Flash or likely Batman
Questions have arisen about potential connections between “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” and other DC films, notably “The Flash” and the appearances of Batman. It has been reported that scenes featuring both Michael Keaton’s Batman and Ben Affleck’s Batman have been omitted from “The Flash.” James Wan confirms that “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” stands alone and is not connected to “The Flash” or Batman, although he remains tight-lipped about any potential Batman cameos in his film.
Wan explained the challenges of aligning the release schedules of “Aquaman” and “The Flash” but ultimately emphasized that his movie is entirely independent of the broader DC cinematic narrative. With Affleck, Keaton, and Momoa all making appearances in “The Flash,” fans are left to wonder about the presence of Batman in “Aquaman 2,” to which Wan responded with a teasing “no comment.”
Separate universe could set up Aquaman 3
James Wan’s declaration of Aquaman’s independence from the DCEU raises intriguing possibilities for the future of the character. If “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” proves to be another box office success, Warner Bros. may greenlight a third installment. In this scenario, it would be logical for the franchise to continue as an “Elseworlds” entry, similar to Matt Reeves’ “The Batman” and Todd Phillips’ “Joker.”
In addition to this, rumors have circulated that Jason Momoa might transition from his role as Aquaman to portraying Lobo in James Gunn’s reboot.
James Wan, while not confirming any specific stories, believes that the groundwork has been laid in the second movie to develop the characters further in a potential third Aquaman film. Growth and evolution of the characters would be the central theme, building upon the foundations set in “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom.”
James Gunn has already expressed the concept of standalone “Elseworlds” entries for DC superhero titles, which aligns with the potential direction of the Aquaman franchise. As for whether Wan would consider directing a third Aquaman film, he humorously stated that his current focus is on taking a much-needed break after the extensive commitment to the second installment, joking that he might choose a location far removed from the ocean.
This latest development in the DC cinematic universe opens up exciting possibilities for Aquaman and the potential for new, self-contained stories that diverge from the established DCEU continuity.