It's become a regular expectation now that Marvel Studios owns the movie side of Comic-Con. Every year the studio reps show up to announce and present more of their Avengers franchise, and everything from logos to titles to the most minimal of footage can rouse up the crowd in Hall H. Meanwhile, as we've also been expecting for a number of years now, Warner Bros. news about any DC Comics projects has been exciting, sure, but far less notable. Mainly because it's been far less in quantity.
Until this year. When it leaked early Saturday morning and was later confirmed at the Warner Bros. panel that Superman and Batman are slated for a team-up in two years, the world paid attention. People who don't normally hear about anything out of Comic-Con -- people who maybe don't even know what it is -- were catching wind of this news and talking about it on social media and at parties and in other places that non-movie geeks hang out.
Later Saturday night, those in attendance got to see a lot of footage of films they already know about, but the teasers for Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and especially Guardians of the Galaxy were an enormous hit. And the last of these videos was a pretty big shock since the production only just began this month. Then, Marvel also shared its biggest deal announcement about another movie that everyone there already knew about, The Avengers 2. Only now it had a title, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and through that title at last a clear primary villain (Ultron).
To the people at the San Diego Convention Center, the Marvel panel may have seemed the biggest and most entertaining and most revelatory. To the rest of the world, though, Batman and Superman together on-screen is far more fascinating, even if there was little beyond a promise of a basic, high-concept idea that some see as a desperate measure. However, many Marvel fans were also immediately disappointed and confused about the Avengers sequel going forward with what they believed to be a lackluster baddie and storyline (details of which has been clarified since).
Still, the Marvel movie has Joss Whedon attached. The Superman/Batman movie has Zack Snyder. Fans and general moviegoers have shown preference for Whedon's The Avengers over Snyder's Man of Steel, and while there's still a lot of love for DC's involvement of Christopher Nolan, the Dark Knight director is decreasing his influence with each production, taking only an executive position on this next effort.
I'm far more curious about the Superman/Batman movie, but that's because I'm also more skeptical about it. At the end of the day, and at the end of this year's Comic-Con, Marvel remains the more dependable brand. Yet Superman and Batman remain the more familiar. They'll have the lesser movie but likely the bigger gross. Of course, they'll both lose the year to Star Wars.
What announcement won Comic-Con -- Batman/Superman or Avengers: Age of Ultron?
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