Before you curl up by the yule log for the holidays, spare a few thoughts for those truly in need: the Hollywood executives who work so hard to bring us the superhero movies we enjoy all summer. While we settle down for a few days off and a chance to recharge, those brave, tireless souls will be dreaming up new ways to lure us into theaters over the next few years. Whether they get gifts or coal in their stockings relies on the success or failure of their efforts, years from now … but until then, here are the highlights of this week’s superhero movie news.
SUPER IDEA: Another DC Villain Joining Suicide Squad
With a line-up that already includes Deadshot, Captain Boomerang, the Enchantress, the Joker, and Harley Quinn, you might think that there are already enough bad guys in David Ayer’s 2016 Suicide Squad adaptation. Maybe not. This week, somone on Reddit reported being part of a test group for potential storylines for the movie, and named both Lex Luthor and Arrow villain Deathstroke as possible additions to the cast.
Why this is super: With this many troublesome tykes around, Suicide Squad might get a little crowded—but if nothing else, it’ll quickly build out Warner Bros.’ DC movie universe in terms of bad guys to use in future flicks.
SUPER IDEA: Marvel Borrowing a Page From Mary Shelley
Talking to Entertainment Weekly , Avengers: Age of Ultron writer/director Joss Whedon likened the follow-up to Marvel’s 2012 smash to a piece of classic literature, saying that artificial intelligence is “our new Frankenstein myth. … We create something in our own image and the thing turns on us.” Ultron, he said, would be that idea writ large. “I don’t remember seeing an artificial-intelligence movie where the robot is bonkers—the most emotionally unstable person in the film—and who has the knowledge of 3,000 years of recorded history and who is a pouty teen, all at the same time,” he teased.
Why this is super: If there’s one man we trust with the idea of an emotionally-petulant teen killing machine, it’s Joss Whedon. And, let’s be honest; it’ll be a lot of fun to hear James Spader whine that Tony Stark isn’t the boss of him, especially if it’s accompanied by an army of unstoppable robots.
SUPER IDEA: Sony Maybe, Possibly Finding Spidey’s Sinister Six
According to a report on ComicBookMovie.com, information dumped online following the Sony hack might point at a possible cast for Drew Goddard’s Amazing Spider-Man spin-off movie, Sinister Six. If true, then the following actors are up for roles: Tom Hardy, Emily Blunt, Woody Harrelson, Colin Firth, and Channing Tatum. Also mentioned in the discussion, interestingly, is the possibility of bringing Emma Stone back as her own clone in a future installment, following her character’s untimely death in this summer’s Amazing Spider-Man 2. Well, at least they realized that was a mistake.
Why this is super: Many of the names are unlikely to be available—Hardy and Tatum are already connected with Warners and Fox superhero series, respectively, and Blunt is one of the rumored choices for Marvel’s Captain Marvel—which gives this list an air of wish-list casting more than anything else. However, they’re all interesting and, in some cases, unlikely choices, which suggests that the movie might be surprisingly fun, if it actually gets made…
SUPER IDEA: James Gunn Knows That Thanos Is a Problem
It turns out, James Gunn was just aware as you that Thanos didn’t really have anything to do in Guardians of the Galaxy this summer. “His presence doesn’t really serve being in Guardians, and having Thanos be in that scene was more helpful to the Marvel universe than it was to Guardians of the Galaxy,” the director told Vulture, describing the character’s big scene as the hardest to write for the entire movie. “You’re setting up this incredibly powerful character, but you don’t want to belittle the actual antagonist of the film, which is Ronan. You don’t want him to seem like a big wussy.”
Why this is super: Thank God that it wasn’t just us. Thanos literally had no purpose in that movie other than setting up future Marvel films, so it’s oddly reassuring for the sake of future movies to see that Gunn realized this. Whether or not it means we’ll see less of this needlessly gratuitous guest-starring in future, we can but hope, but at least we’re not alone.
MEH IDEA: Not So Fast With That Wonder Woman Movie, Folks
Well, this was unexpected. In a New York magazine profile of director Michelle MacLaren, the Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad veteran said she couldn’t say anything about her announced gig as director of the Warner Bros. Wonder Woman for a surprising reason: the movie hasn’t actually been greenlit yet, and despite the announcement of a 2017 release, there’s nothing officially on the calendar. “I really, really, really can’t talk about this,” she said. It sounds as if there’s not a lot to talk about, anyway.
Why this is villainy: Waaaait. So the movie was announced and MacLaren gets the job of directing it, but it might not happen? That’s some Olympic-level trolling there, Warner Bros. This is how you’re ending the year? That doesn’t make us feel too good about all the other movies announced at the same time, we have to say.