Jason Momoa‘s future as Aquaman is now an uncertainty, as DC Studios is expected to reboot many of its film adaptations of its comics moving forward. As a result of new DC Studios heads James Gunn and Peter Safran finalizing their multi-year plan before meeting with Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav next week, the actor’s time as Aquaman appears to be winding down, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
However, as Momoa finishes his time playing Arthur Curry in Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, which is set to be released in theaters on Christmas Day next year, his time in the DCEU may not be done. After the distribution of the sequel to 2018’s Aquaman, the SAG Award-nominated actor may return to the universe to play another DC character, intergalactic bounty hunter Lobo.
But the decision hasn’t been made yet, as DC Studios may be wary of bringing Lobo to the screen. He’s not as well-known as some of its other comic book characters, so he may not be able to draw crowds into theaters. First introduced in the 1980s, Lobo’s most popular period came in the ’90s, before he fell out of favor with comic writers. While the character still has loyal fans, he isn’t a high-profile DC staple.
However, Lobo is a quirky, outsider, misfit character who’s similar to other protagonists that Gunn likes to include in his superhero films. As a result, Lobo may join the discussion at DC Studio in the future. Lobo has become a frontrunner to be the next DCEU character Momoa plays, after Gunn, the new co-chairman and co-CEO of DC Studios, tweeted a picture of the character last month
It’s currently unknown if DC Studios will pivot away from continuing to adapt Aquaman for the screen, however, as the original feature become the highest-grossing movie based on a DC Comics character. It earned $1.148 billion at the global box office when it was released, much more than recent DCEU films like Black Adam and The Suicide Squad, which Gunn wrote and directed.
Momoa recently spoke to CBR about an upcoming mystery project he does have lined up with DC. He remained coy about whether it will involve Lobo, only teasing that it’s based on a character he’s collected the comics of his whole life.
“I’m just happy that Gunn is at the helm and Safran, who is just like my heart,” the actor said. “So I’m in good hands, and I think comic book fans around the world are going to be very excited.”
The news of Momoa potentially stepping down from his role as Aquaman comes as it was also announced that helmer Patty Jenkins’ proposed follow-up, Wonder Woman 3, has been scrapped. It’s reported that Gunn and Safran, along with Warner Bros. Pictures co-chairs and CEOs Michael De Luca and Pamela Abdy, told the director that the idea for the sequel didn’t fit into the multi-year work in progress plan they have for the DCEU.
Also, Henry Cavill’s anticipated return as Superman in a direct follow-up to his 2013 introduction in the DCEU, Man of Steel, may also not move forward. The news of the potential cancellation of the sequel comes after Cavill made a cameo appearance as as Superman in the post-credits scene of Black Adam.
The news also comes as the executives at Warner Bros. Discovery are deciding if they’ll end the Snyderverse. The Snyderverse is a series of DCEU movies are directed by Zack Snyder and star Cavill, Momoa, Ben Affleck, Gal Godot, Ezra Miller and Ray Fisher.
While the DCEU’s extended future is uncertain, its 2023 theatrical schedule remains secure. As a result, Shazam! Fury of the Gods, The Flash and Blue Beetle are expected to be distributed in theaters on their respective release dates.
The three movies’ releases will accompany the distribution of Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, which co-stars Amber Heard, Willem Dafoe, Patrick Wilson, Dolph Lundgren, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Temuera Morrison and Nicole Kidman. It’s being helmed by James Wan, who also directed its predecessor, and was written by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick.