Jason Momoa starring in Aquaman 3 might seem a little premature considering we haven’t even gotten a firm handle on Aquaman 2 yet. But such is the state of Hollywood where studios are often looking two (or many more) movies ahead before the one right in front of them is even close to getting made. It’s the new world order and why it isn’t all that surprising that the folks at DC are already eyeing Aquaman 3 for some undetermined date way off in the distant (very distant) future.
The good news from these rumors is that there’s clearly an ongoing plan around Jason Momoa and the Aquaman franchise, suggesting that the second movie in the franchise would be setting up for other stories in the future. In general, this is a good practice for filmmakers because it A: allows for more creativity in the moment because they know the gig is secure and B: presents at least ideas around a solid plan for a character’s arc. Of course, it’s also putting the cart a bit before the horse because Aquaman 2 doesn’t appear to even have been greenlit yet.
There’s no doubt a sequel to Aquaman gets made though. The Jason Momoa-led DC Extended Universe was a monster at the box office, raking in a whopping $1.15 billion at the box office on a roughly $180 million budget. And it hit with critics as well with many praising both the more sincere story, something lacking often from DC, and the effects as well. Momoa looked every bit the part of Arthur Curry/ Aquaman and it was clear this thing was here to stay.
But a sequel has been met with fits and starts over the last couple of years. The script is apparently written and James Wan is back on to direct, with Jason Momoa signed on of course. But pre-production was supposed to begin in earnest in 2020 and from that standpoint, they might be behind in schedule. It isn’t anything close to development hell or anything like that, but it appears major details still need ironing out.
A number of key players are back joining Jason Momoa including Amber Heard (mired in some controversy of her own) will be back as Mera, plus Yahya Abdul-Mateen is returning as Black Manta. Though there appears to be some possible reworking of the central themes with recent rumors suggesting the studio wanted to lean more into “girl power” for this film. Whatever direction they take could of course be already setting up for the franchise’s third film.
The uncertainty or at least lack of clarity around Aquaman 2 does make it hard to begin picturing what an Aquaman 3 migiht look like. But again, this is the state of the world when it comes to big franchises these days. It’s not enough to go to the theater and enjoy Jason Momoa as the titular character. We already need to be thinking about the next movie even right there in the moment.