Warner Bros. appears to be stepping up to the plate and getting started on a Justice League movie…again. I’m sure that the $1.3 billion worldwide gross of Marvel’s The Avengers had nothing to do with it.
Will Beall has been hired to write the latest draft of the DC Comics adaptation (the previous script was by Kieran and Michele Mulroney). Variety writes “Warner Bros. had no comment on the top-secret hire, which, due to its timing, was more in anticipation of — rather than a reaction to — the box office success of The Avengers.”
Warner Bros. tried to get a big budget version of Justice League off the ground a few years ago with Mad Max director George Miller directing and Armie Hammer, Adam Brody and Megan Gale starring as Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman respectively. That film fell apart at the last minute and Warner Bros. apparently decided to focus on individual movies-much like Marvel. That came to a shuddering halt last summer when the Green Lantern bombed at the box office. Man of Steel is currently in production for a release next year and The Dark Knight Rises is set to hit screens on July 20th, but apart from that there is little movement on any DC Comics movies.
It would appear that Warner Bros. is now going to cross-pollinate its superhero franchises, something that is now possible with Christopher Nolan leaving the Batman franchise behind. When they re-jig Batman post Nolan they can have him enter a world of hyper-reality, like Tony Stark in Iron Man. This will leave the door open for the character to interact with the likes of The Flash and Superman without it ruining Nolan’s earthbound continuity.
Beall is something of a Warner Bros. darling, having penned a Lethal Weapon reboot, a remake of Logan’s Run and September’s Gangster Squad for the studio. At this point I want to go off on a rant about “rebooting” Lethal Weapon -but I will contain myself.
The timeline for the production of Justice League is unknown- heck, it might not even make it past the scripting stage, but Warner Bros. must be looking and the grosses for Marvel’s films with some jealousy. They’ve managed to take second tier characters like Thor, give them their own lucrative franchises, something that Warner Bros. appears to be unable to achieve with their “big guns”. Batman is obviously the exception.