With just a couple of weeks left until the release of Avengers: Endgame, it seems as though all anyone can talk about is Marvel and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, there is another cinematic universe on the rise, slowly rising from the grave that they dug for themselves. I am talking, of course, about the DC Extended Universe.
With the recent release of Shazam, which garnered positive reviews, it becomes DC’s second good film on the trot. If you look at Aquaman and Shazam, you may notice a similar theme. Neither of them take themselves too seriously and are made purely for entertainment purposes. In other words, DC finally seem to know what they’re doing. They seem to have taken a leaf out of Marvel’s books and it’s doing them good.
Shazam! stars Zachary Levy, Jack Dylan Grazer and Asher Angel as Captain Marvel’s alter ego.
Prospects are looking even brighter for the DC Extended Universe following the release of the trailer for Joker. The very fact that DC is able to release a very kid’s fantasy movie like Shazam and (what looks like) a darker psychological film about the most loved villain in the span of a few months shows that they’re doing something right. It’s this kind of diversity that keeps long-running franchises running.
Joker starring Joaquin Phoenix is directed by Todd Phillips (The Hangover) and is set in the 1970s. From what we can see in the trailer, it will be about Joker’s rise to infamy (or rather fall into insanity) in an already chaotic world. It seems to draw inspiration from Martin Scorsese’s 1976 classic Taxi Driver, and also 1982’s King of Comedy. As the icing on the cake, all three of these movies star Robert de Niro. De Niro can also be seen for a brief moment in the trailer.
Joker is the first DCEU film to truly explore the “extended” side of the franchise.
Besides the Joker film, DC also has a bunch of other exciting future projects lined up for the next few years. Having played the Justice League card way too early, DC will need to rely on independent stand-alone installments for a while. And that’s exactly what they’re doing. Sequels to the fan-favourites such as Aquaman and Shazam! are already in development and are set for 2022 releases. Before that, we will get to see Wonder Woman 1984, in 2020 and The Batman in 2021. Wonder Woman 1984 is going to be directed by Patty Jenkins again. The Batman is going to be directed by Matt Reeves ( Dawn of the Planet of the Apes).
Despite Marvel’s huge fanbase, DC still have their own set of fans, who are willing to forgive the DCEU for everything. So, I guess this is as good a time as any for a revival?