As the box office continues to fall under the spell—get it?—of Marvel’s Doctor Strange, attentions are already turning to the superhero movies of 2017 and beyond. For those wondering what’s happening outside of the election cycle that sucked everyone in this week, here are the best bits of superhero movie news from the last seven days.
SUPER IDEA: Forget Steve Trevor, Wonder Woman Might Have a New Squeeze
After the comic book Wonder Woman was confirmed to be queer last month, many wondered if the movie incarnation could follow suit. Gal Gadot, who plays the on-screen WW, seems open to the idea, revealing during an appearance on Israeli TV show Good Evening with Guy Pines that she even had a potential love interest in mind. “I saw her the other day, Halle Berry,” she said (translation via Batman-TV). “She’s so beautiful. Wow! She’s gorgeous! So, yeah, I could do it with her.” Can superhero fans get over their memories of Berry’s Catwoman film to allow a queer Wonder Woman to make it into the movies?
Why this is super: Wonder Woman is already a rare female superhero in the sea of dudes that fill summer blockbusters—having her be queer as well would just be mind-blowing. Even if Halle Berry isn’t available, can we get Wonder Woman a girlfriend for the sequel no matter what, please?
SUPER IDEA: House-Hunting with the World’s Greatest Superheroes
If you didn’t think Joe and Anthony Russo were the teasing sort before, you will after you see this Facebook post:
Now, why on Earth would the Russos be scouting a fancy mansion for the next Avengers movie? Could it be this?
Why this is super: For an entire generation of comic book fans—us included—the Avengers just aren’t the Avengers without a mansion to hang out in between missions. If they’re getting one for Avengers: Infinity War, we could not be more excited.
CURIOUS IDEA: Black Panther Isn’t Set Where You Thought It Was
The expectation was that Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther would take place almost entirely in the character’s fictional African kingdom of Wakanda, but a recently released casting call for extras might throw some cold water on that idea. It calls for Filipino and Korean men and women for street scenes, and people of any ethnicity to play CIA agents. So, what exactly is going to happen in this movie, and where will it be happening?
Why this is perplexing: It’s possible (likely, even?) that the CIA agents will show up in Wakanda at some point in the movie, but exactly why is Marvel searching specifically for Korean and Filipino actors for street scenes, and what streets are they going to be in? Is Black Panther going to be more of an international thriller than people thought?
SUPER IDEA: Fast Friends Inside the Justice League
In case the teaser footage from Comic-Con International wasn’t enough of a clue, Ezra Miller has confirmed that his version of the Flash will have a strange, but fun, relationship with Batman in next year’s Justice League: “I think Bruce and Barry get a kick out of each other because they’re seeing sort of themselves but reflected in this very warped mirror, you know?” he said. “Bruce, the aged Batman, is everything that being a superhero means you could become, in terms of being, like, pretty shut down and having seen all this horror. He’s like a veteran of this struggle against evil. And Barry is just getting into it, and it seems exciting! And very fun! And so, I think they have a lot to learn from each other, like in any great friendship.”
Why this is super: There’s little as enjoyable as a good buddy movie, and folding one inside Justice League, especially one that pokes fun at the curmudgeonly Batman, can only be a good thing. Now, if only someone would sort out the standalone Flash movie…
SUPER IDEA: Batman Is ‘Fresh’
Joe Manganiello has opened up slightly about The Batman, the Ben Affleck-directed and co-written solo movie starring his version of DC’s Dark Knight, in the wake of some disparaging comments (later walked back) about its development. Affleck’s take on the franchise and character “is a fresh take but I think the audience is going to be surprised,” Manganiello said in a recent interview. “Because it’s a road that no one’s really gone down that’s completely integral to, you know, who Batman is. And I think it’s gonna be refreshing but at the same time completely familiar. But it’s going to take this franchise in a direction that I think a lot of people are going to be really happy about.” Affleck’s movie, he went on to tease will be “gritty and action-packed and cerebral and all of those elements that people love about Batman,” singing the director’s praises by saying, “Ben’s a great director, man.”
Why this is super: On the one hand, it’s no surprise that someone who’s going to appear in the new Batman movie thinks that it’s going to be great. On the other, these statements do provide a bit of hope—even if the use of the word “gritty” gives pause. Haven’t audiences seen that already?
SUPER IDEA: Who Is the Mystery Woman in Peter Parker’s Life?
Hey, remember when we were told that Zandaya would be playing Mary-Jane Watson in Spider-Man: Homecoming next year? That might not be as straightforward as it seems. Talking to The Hollywood Reporter, the actress said that “nothing [about who I am playing] is fact… Whenever we were on set, one of us gets some random character name [on the call sheet]. [Bloggers were] like, ‘Oh they must be so and so.’ And we just crack up about it, because it’s like, ‘Whatever you want to think. You’ll find out.’ It’s funny to watch the guessing game.” She also described her character as being “very dry, awkward, intellectual and because she’s so smart, she just feels like she doesn’t need to talk to people, like ‘My brain is so far ahead of you that you’re just not really on my level.’ So she comes off very weird.” That… really doesn’t sound like MJ. So, what’s going on here, exactly?
Why this is super: Either fans are getting a very different Mary-Jane who, according to Zendaya, is definitively not a love interest for Peter Parker, or they’re getting a new character who isn’t a love interest, but will be a “weird” standalone character adding something special to Parker’s world. Either way this is a win/win.