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Warner Brothers boss Kevin Tsujihara talks the future of DC, The Matrix, Mad Max, Fantastic Beasts and more

March 2nd, 2019 by Marc Comments

Warner Brothers boss Kevin Tsujihara has been talking about all things business in a new interview with the LA Times, but he also talked about the DC Movie universe and what’s coming next.

He also talks about a few of the other big franchises, past and current, and what the plan is in the coming years.

While the DC movies have – by some – been considered misguided thus far, Tsujihara believes that with the current line-up in production, they have finally got on the right track: “The upcoming slate, with Shazam, Joker, Wonder Woman 1984 and Birds of Prey feels like we’re on the right track. We have the right people in the right jobs working on it,” he said.

However, on the future of the universe, he also makes it clear that we’re not getting Avengers 2 anytime soon but rather they (sigh) will be following the Marvel road and developing standalone, establishing movies first: “The universe isn’t as connected as we thought it was going to be five years ago. You’re seeing much more focus on individual experiences around individual characters. That’s not to say we won’t at some point come back to that notion of a more connected universe. But it feels like that’s the right strategy for us right now.”

Now, despite the fact that Joker is (we think, but who knows?) a totally separate movie and unconnected to any other DC film, we believe he’s saying here that like the movies so far, they will all exist in the same reality… just don’t be expecting Wonder Woman in Aquaman 2 or Flash in Birds of Prey.

“What Patty Jenkins did on Wonder Woman illustrated to us what you could do with these characters who are not Batman and Superman,” he continues, talking about a future that doesn’t revolve around Batman and Superman.

“Obviously, we want to get those two in the right place, and we want strong movies around Batman and Superman. But Aquaman is a perfect example of what we can do. They’re each unique and the tone’s different in each movie.”

Honestly, this is all fine with us… a universe full of fresh characters but with familiar faces occurring too? What’s not to like?

However, he was’t just talking about DC movies.

He acknowledges that JK Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts sequel was a disappointment, but seems confident they can get it back on track: “The second film didn’t perform as well as the first, but I think we know what we need to do to get the third film hopefully even better than the first one. And J.K. Rowling is really working hard now on that third script, and we’re going to get it right. She has an incredible vision of where she wants to go with this that is incredibly exciting.”

He goes on to explain the difficulty of creating a franchise layered enough to keep the hardcores enthralled but accessible enough for the casual fans to jump in and know what’s happening: “The hardest part of the franchise is you have such a big core fan base. That fan base really knows the lore and they want to go deep into these characters.

“But what you don’t want to do is intimidate people. You want to be able to create a stand-alone movie that’s enjoyable for someone who isn’t steeped in the lore.”

On why the LEGO Movie 2 didn’t perform well, despite being great, he is realistic about it says that the problem was  – as we all know  – that it didn’t have the fresh appeal the original had:  “The first movie was so fresh and so different. We need to continually rethink the experience, but the Lego brand is incredibly strong.”

But on older franchises he teases what’s to come but still seems standoffish, especially when it comes to a franchise I think we’d all like to revisit: “We have incredible franchises on the features side such as The Matrix,” he says… giving no more details!

Another franchise that seemed on the bring of coming back in a BIG way before vanishing again was Mad Max: “We’d love to work with George Miller on furthering the Mad Max franchise,” he says.

You’re not the only one…

He also adds that he’s very excited for Space Jam 2 and that the Looney Tunes and Hanna-Barbera properties are being looked at in a big way for the future. Name dropping Bugs Bunny and Tom and Jerry, he adds: “We have a lot of stuff in development around those beloved characters on the movie side that we want to augment on the TV animation side.”

So there you have it, it’s all happening at Warners…

What do you all think of the news? Let us know…

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Marc is a self-confessed nerd. Ever since seeing Star Wars for the first time around 1979 he’s been an unapologetic fan of the Wars and still believes, with Clone Wars and now Underworld, we are yet to see the best Star Wars. He’s a dad of two who now doesn’t have the time (or money) to collect the amount of toys, comics, movies and books he once did, much to the relief of his long-suffering wife. In the real world he’s a graphic designer. He started Following the Nerd because he was tired of searching a million sites every day for all the best news that he loves and decided to create one place where you can go to get the whole lot. Secretly he longs to be sitting in the cockpit of his YT-1300 Corellian Transport ship with his co-pilot Chewie, roaming the universe, waiting for his next big adventure, but feels just at home watching cartoons with his kids….