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Warner Bros wanted The Dark Knight Trilogy to launch its shared DC universe

Warner Bros launched the DCEU with Man of Steel but that wasn't the original plan, it was meant to with Batman.

Batman in the Dark Knight

Thanks to the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it seems almost every studio in Tinsel Town has tried to launch their own shared universe. From the Dark Universe to The Transformers-verse numerous studios have all tried to replicate the box-office success that Marvel Studios has enjoyed over the last decade.

Unlike other studios, though Disney’s arch-rival Warner Bros had a secret weapon, its own stable of superheroes and supervillains from the DC Comics universe. This universe, which was launched with Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel in 2013 has been met with mixed critical success but it’s turned into a relatively consistent money-spinner for Warners. Interestingly though, it seems the studio wanted to launch the DCEU far earlier than they actually did.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, David S. Goyer – who helped Christopher Nolan write The Dark Knight Trilogy – was asked to address Zack Snyder’s recent comments about Warner’s plans to set Man of Steel in the Snyder-Verse, and if Warner Bro’s executives ever discussed that with the Dark Knight team.

“Not amongst us when I was doing Man of Steel or among Nolan and myself. Chris always wanted to keep the Dark Knight films as a separate entity and [the studio] kept wanting, understandably, to pull him into a whole DC expanded universe,” he said: “Chris was a producer on Man of Steel, and it’s tempting to think they were linked, but they really weren’t. I mean, I’m sure one could retroactively do it.”

The news that Warner wanted to use Nolan’s take on Batman to launch their shared superhero universe is hardly surprising. The Dark Knight Trilogy was a massive success for Warners. Financially the series was a juggernaut raking in $2.5 billion across all three films at the global box office. Nolan’s dark take on Batman was also a hit with general audiences, critics, and, most importantly, awards bodies.

Likely, Warner Bros was also keeping a keen eye on Disney at this time as well. While Marvel was yet to become the titan it is these days, it was undoubtedly on the rise with The Avengers hitting theatres at a similar time to The Dark Knight Rises. While Rises was the end of Nolan’s series though The Avengers was just another step on a seemingly unending road for Marvel Studios, and it’s hard not to imagine Warner’s being slightly jealous about this new money-spinning franchise.

If you love superheroes but prefer them on the small screen check out our guide on how to watch the Arrowverse in order.