So far, Marvel has dominated the box office scene. The company's connected cinematic universe has worked out incredibly well, and the universe only continues to grow with each new release. On the other hand, DC hasn't been quite as successful, though it looks as if the company is looking to its rival's success for inspiration. After years of speculation and rumors, it seems that the DC Cinematic Universe is finally starting to materialize.
At an investor meeting earlier today, Warner Bros. Pictures revealed the release schedule for its upcoming films, most of which were DC Comics projects. The scale easily rivals Marvel's own tentative release schedule, though it looks like DC is looking further into the future than its competition.
Everything begins with Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. The film will follow up on Man of Steel's introduction to the universe, and will kickstart the overarching connected film continuity. Dawn of Justice is scheduled for release on March 25, 2016.
Following that, DC's Suicide Squad will close out 2016. In the comics, the latest version of the team includes Batman villains Harley Quinn, Deadshot and James Gordon Jr. among others, though there's no word on which villains will make the final cut of the film.
Fans have been calling for a standalone Wonder Woman film since the heroine was announced for Batman v. Superman, and it seems that DC has listened. 2017 will start off with Wonder Woman's own film, and while details are basically non-existent at this point, it can be assumed that much of the story will continue on from Batman v. Superman.
Later in 2017, the big one hits: Justice League is currently set to debut following the Wonder Woman film. This is essentially DC's version of The Avengers, and could easily be one of the biggest films the studio will produce. Again, it can be assumed that story threads from Batman vs. Superman will carry directly into the Justice League film, though the film will also serve as an introduction for many of DC's future projects. Both Batman v. Superman and Justice League will be directed by Zack Snyder.
2018 will begin with the standalone Flash film, followed later that year by Aquaman. 2019 will start with Shazam!, which will likely lead into Justice League 2, which will be directed again by Snyder and will be a continuation of the first part. Finally, Cyborg and Green Lantern (reboot) films will round out 2020, and for now, that's as far into the future as DC is willing to schedule.
For all the comparisons between DC and Marvel, it actually seems like DC is taking quite a different approach. Marvel used its characters' independent films as set up for The Avengers, while DC is doing the opposite: using its Justice League film as an introduction to the individual characters. DC is also planning much further into the future than Marvel (whose schedule currently ends in 2017), though it remains to be seen if DC can overcome its previously mixed success in the industry and truly compete against Marvel's movie monopoly.
It seems that, despite some mixed success in the past, DC isn't backing down. Now, the only thing fans have to worry about is waiting all the way until 2016 for the show to start...