Warner Brothers Confirms Justice League Movie in WorksApr 2nd, 2011 | By Roy Rasmussen | Category: Art and Entertainment
Warner Brothers is planning a Justice League movie, Warner Brothers Motion Picture Group President Jeffrey Robinov confirmed to the Los Angeles Times Tuesday. Robinov said the movie is an essential part of Warner’s long-term marketing strategy, and a script is currently being written.
The Justice League of America (JLA) is a DC Comics superhero team that includes DC’s flagship characters Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman, along with other popular characters like Flash, Green Lantern, Aquaman, and Martian Manhunter. The team began as a 1960s revival of the Justice Society of America (JSA), a superhero team from the World War II era. The JLA’s success in the early 1960s inspired Marvel Comics to create a rival group, the Fantastic Four, which proved a huge success for Marvel.
The Justice League has been adapted to TV several times since the 1960s. The most successful animated adaptations were Super Friends, which ran under different title variations on ABC from 1973 to 1986; and Justice League, which ran on Cartoon Network from 2001 to 2006, becoming Justice League for its last few seasons. Elements of the Justice League cartoon storyline have recently been incorporated into the live-action Superman TV show Smallville, prompting speculations of a Smallville Justice League TV or movie spinoff. Robinov’s statement this week is the first official support for such speculations.
A Justice League movie had been close to production in 2007-2008. But the planned project was delayed by a Writers Guild strike, tax issues in Australia, and concerns about competing with the version of Batman depicted in Warner’s 2005 movie reboot of that franchise.
With Batman Begins grossing $205 million domestically and its sequel The Dark Knight grossing $533 million, Robinov hopes more superhero movies can help Warner maintain revenue levels that will dry up when the Harry Potter series ends this summer. Green Lantern, the first movie in the new Warner/DC wave, is due out June 17, 2011 (contrary to April Fools’ Day rumors pushing it back to October). A new Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises, is due out in July 2012, and a new Superman movie, Superman: Man of Steel, is due in December 2012.
Meanwhile Warner is wrapping up its Smallville TV show and preparing to launch a Wonder Woman TV pilot. Robinov says a Wonder Woman movie script and a Flash movie script, envisioned as spinoffs of a Justice League movie, are in the works. He dismissed concerns about the Wonder Woman TV show conflicting with the movie, concerns which have held back previous Warner adaptations of DC characters. “Wonder Woman could be a film as well, the same way that Superman Returns came out while Smallville was on,” Robinov stated.
Robinov aims to put the Justice League on the big screen by 2013. At that pace Warner and DC will be lagging a year behind Marvel’s superhero team movie, The Avengers, due May 4, 2012. The JLA and Avengers have already fought it out in the comics. The battle for the big screen is on.