The bygone days of a simple nice little panel with guests talking about their upcoming projects left us a few years ago, now it’s who can make the biggest splash, create the most buzz and generate the most “clicks”. WB and DC have been providing some of the more memorable moments at San Diego Comic Con in the past but this year was something else all together.
Even before things started they rolled out a new poster for the film, based on Alex Ross’s famous Justice League artwork, and was generating buzz even before the lights in Hall H dimmed.
DC rolled into SDCC with a lot of momentum thanks to the success of Wonder Woman but with rumors swirling that Ben Affleck was “leaving” the Batman role after Justice League and having a hard time nailing down a director for The Flash movie, they definitely had some damage control to do from a PR standpoint.
Luckily for them and us they have Jason Mamoa…
Early Saturday morning, Mamoa tweeted out this message promising big things from the DC panel, not surprisingly since he’s been THE most vocal and prominent salesmen for Justice League hands down. The guy is a commodity and WB and DC are lucky to have him.
So it’s fitting that first to hit the floor, after a huge announcement by DC, was Mamoa who charged the stage through the crowd holding his trident high in the air. He bound up onto the stage and joined emcee Chris Hardwick and they talked about the upcoming Aquaman, afterward they were joined by his fellow Justice Leaguers.
Back to the announcement, when the lights went down the first thing DC did that got everyone in the hall very excited was announce a full slate of future films they were working on. Included in them was Wonder Woman 2, Shazam!, Suicide Squad 2, Justice League Dark, Flash: Flashpoint, Green Lantern Corps, The Batman and Batgirl. No mention of Man of Steel 2 or Gotham City Sirens.
Director James Wan appeared via video, saying it was still very early in the process but the movie will be packed with “epic storytelling, fun adventures, romance on the biggest canvas imaginable.” After seeing some badass concept art, the crowd was shown a quick clip to get a feel for the mood of the movie.
Based on reports from the floor, the footage started off with two fishermen on a small boat. After casting their lines, one snags his on something big and it drags their boat across the ocean – eventually pulling the fishing pole out of the fisherman’s hands. Below the water, a fleet of vehicles go by and the camera dives below the surface of the ocean to take a look at submarines shaped like manta rays and warriors riding multi-finned sharks. That part of the clip ends with a shark eating the camera. The footage then cuts to Momoa as Aquaman on a sunken ship. He says to someone off camera, “I suppose you don’t want to talk about this huh…Neither do I.” He pulls a sword and attacks the camera.
Momoa would later confirm that the army shown in the clip was “Ocean Master’s army,” adding he’ll be “fighting my brother.”
As of right now, WB has no plans to release the footage online. We’ll have to wait and see…
After that the rest of the Justice League hit the stage also entering through crowd which got everybody real excited, especially when Gal Gadot appeared on the screens.
Addressing those rumors which I mentioned earlier, Affleck immediately shut down talk that he’s being moved out of the role by the studio…
“Let me be very clear. I am the luckiest guy in the world. Batman is the coolest fucking part in the universe,” he said. “I’m so thrilled to do it. It’s fucking amazing. I still can’t believe it after two films.”
Some other highlights included…
- Gal Gadot on her character, “Wonder Woman stands for everything that is good. There’s nothing not to love about her.”
- On when the cast found out they’ll be part of the Justice League:
- Gadot – “I was at the airport when I found out I was playing Wonder Woman. I started screaming when I found out.”
- Miller – “I was eating fish when Snyder gave me a call… I said hold on, let me finish my fish…”
- Fisher was shocked when he got the news, couldn’t stop from cursing at the top of his lungs in public.
- Ben Affleck was immediately in for Batman when Snyder told him, “You’ll get to fight Superman.”
- Miller on fitting in as the new guy of the team, “You just have to love yourself. And then hopefully people get used to you…but why am I the new guy?”
- Fisher on the reshoots, “We just finished them up. Joss (Whedon) is a great guy. Snyder picked a great person to finish the film.”
- A cute child asks, “When is Superman going to be in Justice League?” Momoa pulls no punches, “I don’t know if your parents showed you the last film but Superman is DEAD.” Gadot eases the poor child’s mind, promising there will be a lot of Superman in Justice League.
They ended the panel with a new trailer for Justice League which, from reports off the floor, blew the roof of Hall H. The trailer clocks in at over 4 minutes and gives us our first real look at villain Steppenwolf and the League fighting him. Still no signs of Darkseid or Superman but there is an indication that Green Lantern will also be appearing. Earlier in the day, Armie Hammer was seen walking around SDCC which set off rumors he would be joining them on stage, it didn’t happen.
Check it out if you haven’t seen it already…
So, that was the big end to the WB panel. I’m sure there’s more reporting to be done here and will bring it all to you as it comes out. Stay tuned!
Till next time…