Warner Bros. has been busy announcing new DC Universe films this past year, but they’ve also been canceling slated future films for the comic franchise as well. When The Hollywood Reporter first announced earlier this year that Warner Bros. had officially canceled work on the DC Extended Universe film, New Gods, there could have been numerous reasons for the studio to ax the project. However, a recent interview with the planned film’s writer and director on SiriusXM hints that Zack Snyder’s Justice League might be to blame.
A recent interview with filmmaker Ava Duvernay got her to briefly address her cancelled DC project, New Gods. You can see the brief clip below.
Oscar-nominated filmmaker Ava DuVernay was set to take the reigns in 2018 on a new DC Universe film that would bring new comic characters to the big screen. The film was set to be an adaptation of the characters first appearing in DC comics in 1971. The New Gods, who lived outside of normal time and space, were a race of celestial beings, including the familiar villain, Darkseid. While the titular character was originally left out of Joss Whedon’s Justice League, he was eventually introduced to the big screen following the release of Zack Snyder’s extended cut of the aforementioned film–leading fans to speculate this to be a possible cause for the film’s cancellation.
When Zack Snyder stepped down as producer on Justice League, a slew of changes were made to the film, including a drastic cut in movie run time, reshooting of scenes, and the removal of characters and storylines. The movie debuted in November of 2017 with lackluster reviews, as many blamed the change in writing from Snyder to Whedon. Snyder was quick to dissociate himself from the film, claiming much of his work did not make it to the screen. After four years of Snyder fans voicing their demands that Warner Bros. release the “Snyder Cut” of Justice League, the studio released the extended film to HBO Max in March of 2021.
Coincidentally, just a few short weeks after the Snyder cut release of Justice League, Warner Bros. made the announcement that they were canceling two slated DC Universe movies, including New Gods, without citing any reasons for doing so. Since the foil Darkseid had just been introduced in Zack Snyder’s cut weeks prior to the news, it was evident that Justice League most likely had a role in the canceling of the former film. Now, the recent interview with Ava DuVernay seems to confirm this.
DuVernay seemingly confirmed fans’ speculations on the axing of the film in her recent interview on the Radio Andy show. Stating the film was axed “based on some things that were going on with another film in that world.” Considering Zack Snyder’s Justice League was the only other film in the DC universe to have touched on New Gods lore, it is safe to say that the “another film” she references was Snyder’s.
While Zack Snyder’s extended cut of Justice League generally received better reviews than that of Whedon’s, reviews of the film were still mixed, and it wasn’t quite the hit many expected. Likely due to the overall negative response received for Justice League, it’s apparent that Warner Bros. and DC are currently focused on developing their most iconic heroes first, as the studio makes way for the upcoming release of projects focusing on Batman, the Flash, and Aquaman.