James Gunn Lays Out Plans for the “DCU” and Naturally, We Have Concerns

Let's hope this guy knows what he's doing...



Earlier today, Marvel Studios writer/director turned DC Studios Co-CEO James Gunn laid out the groundwork for what fans can expect in the upcoming overhaul to the “DCU”. Gunn discussed his and Co-CEO Peter Safran’s plans revealing that the DC Universe will span across films, television, and gaming while retaining a singular story with the same actors in live-action who will also be voicing their animated and video game counterparts. And, if there are stories that are outside of the DCU, such as Matt Reeve’s Batman (which we were disappointed to hear), Todd Phillips’ Joker, or Teen Titans GO, it is then being labeled as part of DC’s “Elseworlds” and won’t play into the larger picture, so to speak.

Once Gunn cleared that up, he jumped quickly into discussing the handful of projects we already know about, such as Shazam! Fury of the Gods, followed by Ezra Miller’s The Flash, the latter of which “resets the entire DC Universe”. This means that everything that came before is pretty much done and over with (kinda). Not really a lot of clarity on that as he then goes on to mention the Blue Beetle film and Aquaman 2 which both come out later this year after The Flash. His is verbiage on this isn’t exactly clear as it suggests that Blue Beetle and Aquaman could still be a part of the DCU, or perhaps both take place prior to The Flash and the universal reset, despite being released after. Yeah, um… we have a load of questions about that…

From there, Gunn went on to focus on the topic of what comes next, the handful of projects that are part of his and Safran’s new vision and new DCU, which will presumably start a whole new experience for DC characters while leaving everything else behind (save for Elseworlds stuff which… *sigh*, why bother at this point?). This new “8 to 10-year plan of what DC Studios in film, television, in gaming” will include an animated series called “Creature Commandos“, as part of the “first chapter” of their plan, which is being referred to as “Gods and Monsters“. Gunn says that Creature Commands will be part of the first chapter but will not be the whole chapter.

Creature Commandos is an animated series that Gunn says he has written every episode for that will move in and out of animation, where the same voice actors of these characters will portray their live-screen versions as well.

Next, Gunn discussed that Viola Davis will continue to portray Amanda Waller in an upcoming live-action series aptly named “Waller“, which will see her work together with members of Team Peacemaker. Whether or not John Cena will continue as the character of Peacemaker wasn’t mentioned but there is a pretty good chance he may stick around, considering that James Gunn wrote all the episodes himself (a second season is coming with all episodes being written and directed by James Gunn himself).

After those first couple of announcements, Gunn went on to mention that the true beginning of the DCU will be a film written by Gunn called “Superman: Legacy” which comes to theaters on July 11, 2025. Curiously, Gunn made it seem like Creature Commandos and Waller weren’t significant in the same way as this movie so it will be interesting to see how those others will be treated in the grand and bigger picture. No details on the timeline or placement Superman: Legacy falls into within the large scheme of things were shared during this announcement.

Following Legacy with be a Green Lantern series called “Lanterns” which will feature both Hal Jordan and John Stewart as they solve a mystery that plays into the large story of the DCU. Gunn mentions that this will be like True Detective with the Green Lanterns playing space cops.

Afterward, Gunn revealed a new film called “The Authority” featuring the Wildstorm characters following a group of heroes who feel the world is broken and want to fix it.

Next to be revealed was a live-action tv series called “Paradise Lost“, which will basically be Game of Thrones featuring the Amazons of Wonder Woman’s heritage.

Then, and perhaps the most curious was the introduction of the DCU’s Batman. Gunn says that the character’s intro to the DCU will be a film about The Brave and the Bold, the story by Grant Morrison with Batman’s son, Damian as the current Robin. Holy shit, seriously? Why on god’s green earth is everyone and anyone at DC so desperate to speed run through this stuff? I get that the story is good and and the film may be excellent but can no one over there take it slow and ease into things? Christ.

After disappointing everyone with Batman’s reveal, Gunn announced several more projects including a Booster Gold live-action series, a Supergirl film called “Woman of Tomorrow”, and lastly, a Swamp Thing film.

Once James Gunn was finished discussing the plans for the next several years, he detailed his focus and desire for everyone involved in the process of making these films and shows was the passion they share for the story. Regardless of how we feel about this outline of planned projects, one would have a hard time arguing that Gunn wasn’t passionate beyond description. However, that doesn’t change how we feel about what projects are coming first…

Of all the announcements, the Lanterns show sounds the most interesting to us. That is not to say it will be the best, as there is just no way to know at this point but the premise is most interesting. The other stuff seems a bit… rushed? I am not too sure how to describe it. On one hand, I have faith that Gunn will ensure that everything is made to his standards and vision but like, why Swamp Thing? Why The Authority? Why Creature Commandos? Why not start off a little slower and take the time to build a world that evolves into something grander?

Look, I am not a professional, nor do I have the authority (no pun intended) to tell James Gunn and Peter Safran what to do. But as a fan, I can’t help but feel a great bit of concern that Superman’s first DCU film is presumably about his legacy and Batman’s introduction is about his relationship with his son, the FIFTH Robin?! Ugh, I can’t help but feel slightly defeated all over again…

In the end, this could all work out and we may all end up eating our words. However, the track record for DC and Warner Bros. is one paved with colossal failure and overwhelming disappointment. We like James Gunn, we have faith in James Gunn, but can he really pull it off with such obscure and lackluster reveals for the DCU’s first decade? We have no other choice but to wait and see.

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Marc is the Editor in Chief for Geek Outpost. If you have an inside scoop you want to share, you can email him at marc@geekoutpost.com. He prefers Crocs for their style over their comfort.

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