A Metropolis smashing collection of DC Comics related news for June 23rd – 25th, 2013!
“Man of Steel” plummets 65% in Week 2!
Last week, DC Entertainment and Warner Brothers’ latest Superman film, “Man of Steel”, was on top of the world, earning the best film opening of June in recorded box office history. It was surely a triumph for the studio as well as director Zack Synder and producer Chris Nolan, and a sign of hope for DC superhero films outside of Batman. Unfortunately, mixed reviews and some stiff competition from “Monster’s University” and “World War Z” caused the Super-film to fall to third place in its second week in theaters. It earned $41.3 million domestically, a whopping 65% drop from last weekend. As Box Office Mojo reports, it is a drop which is similar to the second week drop from the last non-Batman film released by DC Entertainment, 2011’s “Green Lantern”.
However, there are glimmers of hope. With a North American haul of $210 million, “Man of Steel” has already surpassed the total domestic haul that “Superman Returns” earned in 2006 (which, for the record, earned $200 million in the U.S. seven years back). The film also took in an additional $89 million overseas, with premieres in Australia, Brazil, and Japan as the summer trudges on. It has earned $188.3 million overseas for a worldwide total gross of $398.3 million in two weeks. Going into this film’s release, it was no secret that “Man of Steel” was being seen as a measuring stick for not only a theoretical “Justice League” film, but for any DC superhero film beyond Batman in the near future. Executives at Warner Brothers have already been shuffled around regardless of this performance. The bottom line is that “Man of Steel” may wind up a modest success at best considering its cost to produce and promote, and it will remain to be seen if that is enough to move forward from.
Greg Pak takes over “Action Comics”!
The musical chairs of creative teams at DC Comics continues, as “Action Comics” gains its third creative team in roughly two years. Grant Morrison wrote the series when it relaunched at the start of the “New 52” era in mid 2011 for 18 issues. Andy Diggle was set to take over afterward, but announced his departure in March and his “run” will remain at four issues. Pak, best known for his yeoman run on “Incredible Hulk” as well as co-writing “Incredible Hercules” for Marvel Comics, is kicking off a new “Batman/Superman” series this week as well. The artist for Pak’s run on “Action Comics” will be Aaron Kuder.
It is easy to take this announcement with a grain of salt. Stories of editorial micro-management from everyone from James Robinson to Rob Liefeld (!) have emerged in the past year or so. Many optimistic statements about the latest creative team vowing long term plans have been undermined a month or two later with claims of departure and woe. That said, Pak’s star seems to have faded at Marvel Comics, so it is possible he sees DC Comics as more viable for him. Good luck to him.
“Beware the Batman” set to debut on Cartoon Network!
The latest Batman cartoon, the CGI animated “Beware the Batman”, is set to debut on Cartoon Network on July 13th. World’s Finest have shared an official statement (along with images) as well as the series’ official trailer. The gist of the series is that it teams up Batman (Anthony Ruivivar) with Alfred Pennyworth (JB Blanc) and Katana (Sumalee Monatano) against villains who have yet to be animated in all of the previous half dozen Batman animated series, such as Magpie (Grey DeLisle), Anarky (Wallace Langham), Professor Pyg (Brian George), and Mr. Toad (Udo Kier). Also mentioned as appearing is Ra’s Al Ghul, voiced by Lance Reddick.
The previous Batman cartoon, the intentionally campy “Batman: Brave and the Bold” ran on Cartoon Network for three seasons from 2008-2011. The one before that, “The Batman”, ran for five seasons on Kid’s WB from 2004-2008 and was the last to air on network TV. To finish the recent tour down memory lane, “Batman Beyond” ran three seasons across Kid’s WB and Cartoon Network from 1999 (the year the latest incarnation of the original “Batman: The Animated Series” ended) until 2001. The tone as revealed in the trailer for “Beware the Batman” appears to be more serious akin to “The Batman”, with title dress that evokes memories of classic comic title fonts. “Beware the Batman” joins “Teen Titans GO!” on the DC Nation block. Both shows appear to be a step backwards to relying on faithful franchises after “Young Justice” and “Green Lantern: The Animated Series”. Every new Batman cartoon since the turn of the century has lasted at least three seasons, but it will remain to be seen how long this latest one fares.