Warner Bros. is slowly putting together its own cinematic universe to take on the Marvel juggernaut, beginning with next year’s Batman v. Superman. And while the studio has a lot of fantastic material to work with, it doesn’t sound like things are off to a good start behind the scenes. A new report from The Hollywood Reporter claims the studio is struggling to create a fully realized cinematic universe, lacking a clear vision and outlook for the future
We already know what Marvel Studios has planned for the next several years, with Phase 3 of its cinematic universe scheduled to kick off with Captain America: Civil War in 2016. But Warner Bros. apparently isn’t quite sure where it wants to go after Batman v. Superman is released. We’re expecting films such as Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Suicide Squad and more to come out over the next decade, but how those stories will flush out and interlock remains to be seen.
There’s no doubt people are interested and excited for what’s in store—the Batman v. Superman teaser already has upward of 30 million views. But the execution needs to be there, and executives are apparently concerned about how Warner Bros. is going to handle the DC property.
“In the early going, some in Hollywood are questioning whether Warners has acted too much in haste without having fleshed out the world on which so much hinges,” The Hollywood Reporter said. “Grumbling among talent reps came especially in response to the studio’s strategy of hiring five writers to compete for a job on Wonder Woman, which has a June 2017 release date.”
While The Hollywood Reporter claims there’s some unrest within the Warners camp, a studio insider claims things are headed in a very clear, very “filmmaker-driven” direction, which contrasts with what Marvel Studios is doing; affairs in the Marvel camp are largely led by producer Kevin Feige, who oversees the MCU.
As of now, it sounds like Warners is content to let all the different pieces work independently of one another, and hope that everything falls in their natural places. According to The Hollywood Reporter’s report, there isn’t really anybody orchestrating the show, with Warners instead relying on people like director Zack Snyder to point the studio in the right direction.
Considering how successful the MCU has become over the past few years, the pressure is certainly on Warner Bros. to perform. First up will be Batman v. Superman, which hits theaters on March 25, 2016. After that it’s Suicide Squad on Aug. 5, 2016, and Wonder Woman on June 23, 2017. No pressure at all.