Director Guillermo del Toro recently dropped out of helming the Justice League Dark movie – currently called Dark Universe – but Warner Bros. is still moving ahead with the DC adaptation. According to The Tracking Board, the film will now be produced by Scott Rudin, whose latest film, Steve Jobs, opens this month. Del Toro is also on board to produce Dark Universe, for which he also wrote the script.
Apparently, WB has prioritized Dark Universe so high, the movie is said to be aiming a 2016 production start date. That would mean a 2017 or 2018 theatrical release. The script is now being updated, with the studio courting directors. This would make the latest team-up film to be released by WB/DC, joining Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Suicide Squad, Booster Gold/Blue Beetle and, of course, the two-part Justice League epic.
As for what the movie is about, The Tracking Board apparently has uncovered some plot details. In Dark Universe, there are “a series of ancient tomes stolen by a madman hellbent on the destruction of humanity. When he learns of this, occult detective John Constantine seeks out a group of heroes that specialize in the mystic and arcane in order to save the world.” The rest of the Justice League Dark roster is expected to consist of characters such as Deadman, Zatanna, Swamp Thing and Etrigan the Demon.
Oh, and don’t expect Matt Ryan to reprise the John Constantine role from NBC’s Constantine and The CW’s Arrow. While fans have loved the actor’s take on the Hellblazer, Dark Universe will recast the role. This will mark the character’s second movie appearance, following 2005’s Constantine (where he was played by Keanu Reeves).
But will Dark Universe exist in the DC Extended Universe? The Tracking Board claims that the Justice League Dark team will co-exist separately from the main Justice League team, similar to how the Guardians of the Galaxy co-exist separately from the Avengers in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, as previously reported, the Justice League Dark will eventually be implemented into the mainstream DCEU.
Hopefully, we’ll be getting official news on Dark Universe to come sooner than later.