Black Adam 2 stalls as James Gunn restructures the DC Universe
black adam no longer gets a sequel at DC Studios. In a statement posted to Twitter, manager Dwayne Johnson confirmed that after speaking to the company’s new co-CEO, James Gunn, it has been decided that “Black Adam will not be in the first chapter of [DC Universe’s] narration. That said, the 50-year-old actor and DC will continue to explore “the most valuable ways” to use Black Adam in future “multiverse chapters.” Gunn also responded to the tweet, hoping to see what Johnson’s Seven Bucks Productions has in store further in the revamped DC Universe.
DC Studios is currently undergoing a massive restructuring, which involves a complete “reset”, charting the next 10 years for the comic book universe. Similar to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery’s David Zaslav wants his superhero arcs to interconnect and create a cohesive storyline that leads to a dramatic conclusion, presumably with plans for a new Justice League movie.
Amid the upheaval, several projects have been canceled in the past two weeks, starting with Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman 3, whose treatment of the script “didn’t match the new plans”. Even Henry Cavill, who was brought back into the franchise to play Superman again, was pulled because Gunn wanted to focus on the younger days of the Kryptonian superhero – not an origin story.
It’s been more than a little chaotic though. Warner Bros. temporarily brought Cavill back as Superman for the first time since 2017 Justice Leaguein a post-credits cameo for black adam. Johnson and his production team fought hard to get the cameo, which he planned to use as the catalyst to build a heavyweight fight between Black Adam and Superman. The actor, who is on a mission to change the “hierarchy of power in the DC Universe”, even promised confrontation as the end result, while introducing new groups such as the Justice Society of America (JSA).
Although it looked promising, black adam underperformed both critically and commercially. With a reported production budget of $190 million (roughly Rs. 1,570 crore) that soared to $260 million, “after a costly 20-day series of reshoots” following poor test screenings, the latest DC film only managed to collect $391 million (about Rs. 3,300 crore) worldwide. In a bizarre move, Johnson caught on Twitter assure his supporters that black adam was on track to turn a profit, albeit in a defensive position, hoping a follow-up film would be greenlit at the studio.
“James and I have known each other for years and have always rooted for success,” Johnson’s new statement read. “It’s no different now, and I will always support DC (and Marvel) to win and win big.” Meanwhile, Gunn addressed some of the hate directed at him and DC Studios co-CEO Peter Safran, noting that a disrespectful outcry would never affect their decisions to change the game for the DC Universe. The pair were named new studio heads in October and have been tasked with overseeing all of DC’s upcoming movies, TV series and animated projects.
“Our choices for the [DC Universe] are based on what we think is best for the story [and] best for DC characters that have been around for nearly 85 years,” he said in a thread. “Maybe these choices are great, maybe not, but they are made with a sincere heart. [and] integrity, [and] always with the story in mind.
black adam is now available to stream on VOD platforms in India including Apple TV, BookMyShow Stream, Google Play Movies, Prime Video Store and YouTube Movies.