In one of its final scenes, Zack Snyder’s Justice League left us with Lex Luthor’s mysterious escape from Arkham, and the appearance of Deathstroke, an elite mercenary, and one of the world’s greatest and deadliest assassins. After the character’s appearance, fans of the DC Extended Universe started to campaign for a new series or a movie based on Joe Manganiello’s Deathstroke.
#DeathstrokeHBOMax is currently trending on Twitter, with the fans’ outcry to Warner Bros. being to #RestoretheSnyderVerse, and keep the Snyder continuity alive. Joe Manganiello, the man and the face behind Deathstroke’s mask, joined the fans sharing a photo of himself as Deathstroke, on his Twitter media. The actor openly supported the fans’ actions, pushing for the role. He’s has been very open about his canceled appearances inside the DC Extended Universe, as the character was supposed to appear in both Suicide Squad and the theatrical release of Justice League.
Unfortunately, these aren’t the only instances in which Warner Bros did a number on a merciless assassin. There were multiple plans for Deathstroke in the DC Extended Universe, prior to the Justice League release. He was the original antagonist of Ben Affleck’s canceled version of The Batman, in which he would hunt the vigilante blaming him for the death of his family. The showdown between the two was supposed to include Batgirl as well. Unfortunately, the movie never saw daylight, and neither have Deathstroke or Batgirl.
There was another project involving Deathstroke, the character’s own feature film with Joe Manganiello as lead, and Gareth Evans as the movie’s director, but Warner Bros. decided to scrap the project. Still, after his initial appearance as Deathstroke in 2016, and his reappearance in The Snyder Cut fans are determined to see him on screens and behind the iconic black-orange mask.
Unfortunately, the movement hasn’t gained as much traction as many would like, and with no official word back from the HBO Max, or Warner Bros, hope is looking glum. Perhaps the two studio behemoths are hoping that the dust will settle, and the fan rancor will quiet down, allow them to keep Deathstroke as an occasional appearances only character? Or will they heed the fandom’s calling, and release a movie, or a television show dedicated only to Slade Wilson, aka. Deathstroke? Whatever the case may be, Joe Manganiello seems a perfect fit for the role.
Joe Manganiello has an impressive track record of cool-as-ice performances that match Deathstroke’s pure badass nature. It’s worth noting that Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool is Marvel’s more comedic answer to DC’s Deathstroke. Both mercenaries wear masks, wield swords, and even boast matching names, Slade and Wade Wilson. Of course, given the dark and grim tones of DC Universe, we can say that Wade is a jollier (or more insane) version of Slade.
For Slade, killing is a job; except for Batman – that would be revenge. Will we ever see that revenge play out on the big or small screen? It largely depends on Warner Bros. Given the ongoing and increasing popularity of streaming services, we might even see Deathstroke on HBO Max.