There’s further upheaval at DC and Warner Bros, as the sequels to both Shazam and Aquaman have been pushed back, yet again. In a further game of musical chairs, Shazam 2 moves from December 2022 to March 2023, and Aquaman 2 moves from March 2023 to December 2023.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the reason is that new owner Warner Bros Discovery is looking to spread out the marketing and distribution costs associated with releasing studio tentpoles. THR journalist Borys Kit also tweeted; “The moves underscore what a financial mess Warner Bros Discovery is in, as the studio has only enough cash to release two movies from now to the end of this year – Don’t Worry Darling (starring Florence Pugh and Harry Styles), and Black Adam.”
The Hollywood Reporter is also saying that the cancelled (and unfinished) Batgirl movie is getting “funeral screenings” on the Warner Bros lot. They are secret screenings, said to be for people who worked on the movie, both cast and crew, as well as representatives and executives. The movie, which has what were intended to be temporary visual effects and musical score, will then be locked in a vault.
The unusual move comes after a change in leadership at Warners, with newly installed Warner Bros Discovery CEO David Zaslav prioritising cost-cutting measures and refocusing Warners on creating theatrical films, rather than projects for streaming. However, theatrical releases come with heavy marketing and distribution costs.
Stephen King adaptation Salem’s Lot starring Top Gun: Maverick’s Lewis Pullman and Alfre Woodard, William Sadler, and Bill Camp had been pushed from September 2022 to April 2023. It has now been removed from the schedule all together, with no new date announced.
It certainly looks like everything at Warner Bros, and especially DCEU projects, are currently in a state of flux and will probably be subject to further changes. While we wait for more news, check out our guide to the best Batman villains.