Warner Bros. has appointed a new president of DC Films after former president Jon Berg paid the ultimate price for Justice League‘s box office failure. Walter Hamada, a New Line executive for the past 10 years and who has a previous working relationship with Warner Bros. President Toby Emmerich, will take charge of DC superhero movies going forward, as well as any non-DC comic book movies Warner Bros. produces. Geoff “Jeff” Johns, who served as co-head of DC Films with Berg, managed to escape with his job intact, but will now only serve in an “advisory” capacity on the films.
“Walter is creative, resourceful, and committed to excellence, and will bring those qualities to his oversight of our superhero films,” said Emmerich in a statement to Variety. “I’m confident Walter and Geoff, working with our filmmaking partners, will deliver films that will resonate with both broad global audiences as well as DC fanboys and fangirls.”
“Or else…” was left unsaid, but it’s pretty heavily implied, following what Warner Bros. reportedly sees as a mishandling of the DCEU. When Berg stepped down in December, Warner Bros. was reportedly frustrated with Berg and Johns’s insistence on repeatedly bringing back Zack Snyder despite the polarizing reception of his movies. The studio also felt that each DCEU movie seemed to be less successful than the previous one (except for Wonder Woman). Hamada, on the other hand, oversaw the successful films It and The Conjuring at New Line, and Warner Bros. is hoping that he’ll be able to bring that success to the beleaguered DCEU.
Though Justice League has made more than $650 million at the global box office, it reportedly needed $700 million to break even due to the film’s budget, reshoots, and other costs. Featuring some of the most well-known and iconic characters in the world in Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman, the critically-panned film failed to live up to its potential, which, if we’re being honest, has been the ongoing narrative of the DCEU, excepting Wonder Woman, since Snyder’s Man of Steel first divided audiences with its Randian value system and neck-snapping Superman.
In case you were wondering, this almost certainly means fans won’t be getting that Zack Snyder cut of Justice League they’ve been demanding. Sorry.
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