May 6, 2016 was going to see the release of both Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Captain America 3. But everyone knew that either Warner Bros. (DC Comics) or Disney (Marvel) were going to move their respective movie, because releasing two huge, huge, huge box office draws like that on the same day is unprecedented and kind of insane.
Well, Warner Bros. was the first ones to change, and its new date for Batman v Superman is also unprecedented: March 25, 2016.
Yes, one of the most highly anticipated franchise crossovers of all time, featuring two of the biggest summer movie icons of all time, is going to come out at the tail end of March, months before summer even starts. However, before you take this as a sign that Warner Bros. is running away from Marvel, you need to think of this purely in business terms.
Years ago, such a release date was unthinkable for a movie of this scale. After all, studios wanted their big movies out during the summer months when American kids and parents were on vacation and could go see a movie over and over if they wanted to. Well, now international box office numbers matter even more than domestic ones, and so it doesn't necessarily make sense to pigeonhole a movie into the same window when Americans are on summer break but the rest of the world isn't.
Of course, we have to wait until 2016 to see who is making the smarter business play here, but we suspect moving Batman v Superman out of the summer fray could actually be a great thing for the studio's box office numbers. And if it is, you can sure count on other major movies opening up in similarly nontraditional release dates.
But the new date for Batman v Superman wasn't the only news Warner Bros dropped today. It also unveiled a whole slew of release dates for DC Comics films:
Untitled DC Film - 08/05/16
Untitled DC Film - 06/23/17
Untitled DC Film - 11/17/17
Untitled DC Film - 03/23/18
Untitled DC Film - 07/27/18
Untitled WB Event Film - 11/16/18
Untitled DC Film - 04/05/19
Untitled DC Film - 06/14/19
Untitled DC Film - 04/03/20
Untitled DC Film - 06/19/20
Untitled WB Event Film - 11/20/20
That's a lot of comic book movies. As for what will occupy all of those dates, we'll just have to start guessing for now (none of the past DC Comics rumors have fully panned out yet), but you could probably just look at who is in the Justice League and assume that this means everyone from Wonder Woman to the Flash to Aquaman will be getting their own movie.
As for the Warner Bros. Event Films, those are also total wild cards at this point, but one possible contender would be sequels to the Harry Potter spin-off series Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
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