Yesterday, James Gunn and Peter Safran, the new heads of the new DC Studios of the new Warner Bros. Discovery, announced a new slate of films and TV projects. This is like, the sixth relaunch of DC stuff over the past few years, it’s hard to get excited about any of this since I don’t expect to see even half of it get made. Would love to be wrong! But history tells us two years from now, we’ll be launching an all new DC slate. So I will continue to wait patiently for The Batman sequel, officially coming in 2025 (which LOL, that’s not a real year) and remain skeptical about everything else. I just cannot help but feel that James Gunn being extremely online is going to blow up in everyone’s faces (again)—assuming superhero movies survive the 2020s, that is. Kinda starting to feel like the wheels are coming off the party wagon, but we’ll see. 


I’m also hard-pressed to go all-in on the all-new DC because they’re just taking the Marvel model and doing it bigger, combining storytelling across not just movies and TV, but also animation and video games (Marvel has let their games stand separately, and has put out a couple banger games recently). On paper, I understand how this is easier for general audiences who don’t follow every minute storyline, since the Wonder Woman you see in any media will be THE Wonder Woman and you won’t have to struggle to keep plots and timelines separate—though there will still be “elseworlds” for things like Joker and The Batman and the perennially popular Teen Titans Go!—but I also think copying Marvel so closely will, eventually, blow up in everyone’s faces. It’s too much sameness. 


Barring a few exceptions, I didn’t like the direction of the DC films in the 2010s, but I DID keep saying allowing for a looser, filmmaker-driven approach was the best way to differentiate DC stuff from Marvel stuff (and it eventually got us to The Batman, no complaints). Now, we’re tossing that out the window for the same kind of “it’s all connected” storytelling. Just in time for everyone to get tired of it!

But before we get to any of the new sh-t, we have to get through the old sh-t, which is the same sh-t we’ve been talking about for years now: what the hell are they going to do with Ezra Miller and The Flash. Well, according to Gunn, The Flash is probably one of the greatest superhero movies ever made.” 

Setting hyperbolic expectations aside, the very real question of Ezra Miller’s future with the studio remains open. Of Miller, Peter Safran said: “Ezra is completely committed to their recovery. We are fully supportive of that journey they are on right now. When the time is right, when they are ready to have that discussion, we will all figure out what’s the best path forward. But right now, they are completely focused on their recovery. And in our conversation with them, in the last couple of months, it feels like they are making enormous progress.”


Welcome to the complete rehabilitation of Ezra Miller. If The Flash is successful, they will continue to play Barry Allen, I’m sure, never mind the plethora of legal issues surrounding them (they did recently enter a plea deal regarding the Vermont trespassing case). I’m not saying there can be no forgiveness, or that Miller doesn’t deserve a comeback, but are they OWED a comeback? Let alone a comeback as the face of a major superhero franchise, just about the most high-profile gig you can get in Hollywood? It’s less a comeback and more “protect at all costs”. I’m getting big “The Flash can’t fail vibes” from the way people talk about this movie, and that seems to extend to ensuring Miller doesn’t falter as a viable leading actor. 

Meanwhile, Leslie Grace of the shelved Batgirl movie, who did nothing wrong and is in no legal trouble, has no upcoming projects. Safran called Batgirlnot releasable” and said it would “hurt those people involved”. I guess we’ll just take your word for it, never mind some of the utter dreck we’ve seen released in the superhero genre and all the actors are still employed after the fact, some even better off after their superhero movie(s) failed, like Andrew Garfield. Honestly, Batgirl is a huge reason I struggle to get excited about new DC stuff. Why care about anything, if it can be sh-tcanned at the last minute? It’s not just that I don’t trust they’ll make everything they say they are, it’s that even if they make it, will we get to see it? Or will we just be told it’s bad and never mind, we’re not missing out on anything? 


Sidebar: I am deeply bothered by how the internet just takes this “it’s so bad we couldn’t release it” line with Batgirl at face value. They sh-tcanned a whole ass movie for a TAX WRITE OFF and we’re supposed to believe ANYONE when they try to downplay the ugly business side of it as if they made some brave artistic decision protecting us from an allegedly sh-tty movie? After the “funeral” screenings for Batgirl, suddenly the internet was rife with unnamed sources saying the movie was so terrible, oh my gods, they SAVED US from it! And maybe it is bad, my point is, WE DON’T KNOW, we’ll NEVER KNOW, and that talking point shifted the conversation from David Zaslav screwing over hundreds of people who worked on the film, to being the big brave boy who saved us from the bad girl movie. And everyone just went with it because ugh, girl superhero movies, amirite? 

Anyway, Gunn also addressed the Henry Cavill issue, clarifying they never cast/agreed to keep Cavill on as Superman, which just further drives home that Dwayne Johnson’s play for DC top dog blew up in his face—ten to one he ends up in the “last” Fast/Furious movie now. They also talked about Shazam! star Zachary Levi, who came out with some anti-vaxx nonsense over the weekend. To that Gunn said, “I can’t be changing my plans all the time because an actor says something that I don’t agree with.” 

I mean, I get it. We probably all have co-workers/employees with birdsh-t views, we just don’t know it because they’re not famous and/or we don’t follow them on social media. Gunn is drawing the line at “morally reprehensible” behavior as the thing that gets people canned in his new DC world, which is a big umbrella covering a lot of potential behaviors none of which, apparently, Ezra Miller has engaged in. All hail the new DC, it looks a lot like the old DC.