New Details Emerge About The Original DCEU ‘Aquaman’

in DC, Movies

aquaman-fan-art

Credit: X-Post, via Reddit

The retired DC Extended Universe (DCEU) will never be short of critical opinions, analyses, and lively debates. It was heralded by some as a refreshingly gritty take on the superhero genre, while others saw it as a divisive collection of films that lacked consistency and tone. Warner Bros. would eventually deviate from this creative direction and would scrap multiple DC projects.

The Justice League
Credit: DC Studios/Warner bros.

Recently, indie director, Jeff Nichols (Midnight Special, The Bikeriders) divulged his vision for Aquaman that would have been even darker. Nichols was originally in talks with Warner Bros. to make this movie in 2016. He would go into detail about his idea for the famed King of the Seven Seas.

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Credit: Warner Bros.

He expressed that his Aquaman was older with his iconic harpoon hand. He was a fallen king in mourning over the death of his son. Nichols disclosed that he still has scenes in his head that would have been good, but the more dramatic tone is not what the studio had in mind. Mainly, because this version of Arthur Curry would have conflicted with the version Zack Snyder initially created with his DCEU cast.

This version of the King of Atlantis Nichols attempted to bring to life was inspired by the makeover the character experienced in the 1990s. Aquaman has always been joke-fodder amongst comic book fans. He was often labeled as the silly looking superhero who talked to fish. This stigma prompted DC Comics to reinvent the character to be a more grizzled and brooding hero.

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Credit: DC Comics

Aquaman would be drawn with long flowing blonde locks, a manly beard and a harpoon hand that resulted from being eaten off by piranhas. This trauma turned Arthur bitter. It would transform him into a cynical, vicious, wrath-seeking character. This definitely shed his dorky infamy of his Silver Age portrayal.

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Credit: DC Comics

While Jason Mamoa embodied the physicality and much of the look of the 90s Aquaman, his motivation and attitude are drastically different to what Nichols wanted for the hero. Master of Horror, James Wan, would eventually take over the project and led Aquaman to a $1 billion gross at the box office.

Jason Momoa as Aquaman
Credit: Warner Bros.

Unfortunately, due to the regime change at now Warner Bros. Discovery, the sequel, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, keeps getting pushed back. Even though the studio has claimed it is due to standard reshoots, many have speculated its delay is due to a lack in cohesiveness. The movie has been put through the ringer as the studio has required the creative team to make multiple revisions.

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Credit: Warner Bros.

They had to cut down on Amber Heard’s role as Mera, which has significantly changed the direction of the overall story. Plus, the newly assembled DC Studios is trying to find a place for this Aquaman since it is a billion dollar franchise. Hopefully, the constant delays and the ever-growing “superhero fatigue” will not drown out the opportunity for this Atlantean to have a place in the new DC Universe.

Amber Heard in 'Aquaman'
Credit: Inside the Magic

Aquaman and The Lost Kingdom is finally set to be released December 20, 2023.

What do you think of Nichols’ version of Aquaman? Is that what Mamoa’s character should become?

in DC, Movies

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