Friday, January 17, 2014

UPDATED: Batman vs. Superman Moved to 2016

Just as the start of production on Zack Snyder's Man of Steel sequel was drawing near, Warner Bros. has announced they have moved the film to 2016.
In a move that sure to be picked apart for months, Warner Bros. announced today that the untitled Man of Steel sequel that we all call Batman vs. Superman was officially moved 10 months from its original July 17, 2015 release date to May 6, 2016.

Rumors cite a leg injury to new Batman, Ben Affleck, as the cause for the delay. Warner Bros. gave an official statement on it (full version below) that says the film will begin production in "the second quarter of 2014" without specifying a date. Moving the release date assures that the Marvel sequel, Avengers: Age of Ultron, will dominate the 2015 box office and also puts WB/DC and Marvel in a head-to-head battle for the May 6 release date, which Marvel used as a placeholder for an as yet unnamed film.

 At this point it seems highly unlikely that both studios will actually try to release a film on the same weekend as it makes absolutely no sense. While people who follow this sort of thing closely will call out the studio that blinks and moves the date, it's important to remember that a large portion of the people who go the movies in 2016 will never have known about the original release date and all the behind the scenes moves.

Here's the official press release from Warner Bros.:

BURBANK, CA – January 17, 2014 – Warner Bros. Pictures announced today that the release of Zack Snyder’s untitled Superman/Batman film has been moved to May 6, 2016, allowing the filmmakers time to realize fully their vision, given the complex visual nature of the story. The decision was made following the shift of the start of production to second quarter of this year. The Studio has also set a July 17, 2015, worldwide release date for its as-yet-untitled all-new Peter Pan adventure. Joe Wright will direct the epic live-action film about the boy who would never grow up, created by J.M. Barrie. The dual date announcement was made by Dan Fellman, President, Domestic Distribution, and Veronika Kwan Vandenberg, President, International Distribution, Warner Bros. Pictures.
In making the announcement, Fellman stated, “We are happy to take advantage of these coveted summer dates, which are perfect for two of our biggest tentpole releases. We share the fans’ excitement to see DC Comics’ most popular figures, Superman and Batman, together on the big screen for the first time, which will now be arriving in theatres in May 2016. Peter Pan has delighted people of every generation for more than a century, so we are thrilled to bring him back to the screen next summer for today’s moviegoers.”
Kwan Vandenberg added, “We know that there is already great anticipation building for the next Super Hero film from Zack Snyder, and we are equally eager to see what he has in store for Superman and Batman as they share the big screen for the first time ever. The summer release corridor is also perfect for Joe Wright’s ambitious new Peter Pan adventure, reimagining the ageless story of the beloved and forever-young hero for audiences worldwide.”
Zack Snyder’s Superman/Batman film stars Henry Cavill, reprising his role as Superman/Clark Kent, and Ben Affleck as Batman/Bruce Wayne. The film will also reunite “Man of Steel” stars Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne and Diane Lane, and also stars Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman/Diana Prince.
Snyder will direct the film from a screenplay written by David S. Goyer, from a story co-created by Goyer and Snyder. Charles Roven and Deborah Snyder are producing, with Benjamin Melniker, Michael E. Uslan and Wesley Coller serving as executive producers.
The film is based on Superman characters created by Jerry Siegel & Joe Shuster, Batman characters created by Bob Kane, and Wonder Woman created by William Moulton Marston, published by DC Entertainment.
The new Peter Pan adventure will be directed by Joe Wright from a screenplay by Jason Fuchs, incorporating J.M. Barrie’s classic characters. The film is being produced by Greg Berlanti and Paul Webster.