There are many questions surrounding Ezra Miller and their 2023 film The Flash; but if the actor isn't replaced, one of the biggest mysteries is how Warner Bros. intends to market his film. While it's true that June of 2023 is more than a year away, the controversy surrounding the actor and their legal problems have only increased; and now, for the first time, it appears that DC is being forced to act.
The Flash, which was originally slated to release in November 2022, isn't just supposed to be DC's long-awaited Barry Allen film. It's also set to explore the DC Multiverse along with Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton's Batman, Sasha Calle's Supergirl, and even Michael Shannon's Zod from Man of Steel.
To promote the film, a prequel comic titled The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive #1 is set for a September 13 release; and recently, a variant cover for the comic, which was drawn by The Flash director Andy Muschietti, was revealed.
However, in light of Ezra Miller's issues, the cover art was met with considerable controversy, leading DC to reportedly take action.
The Flash Comic Book Cover Pulled Due to Ezra Miller?
Following the reveal of a new variant cover for The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive #1, Bleeding Cool has reported that the comic listing and/or its controversial cover have been pulled.
This is because the variant cover shows a naked Scarlet Speedster, bearing Ezra Miller's likeness, struggling to pull on his costume; and due to the actor's arrests and new allegations, it's a bit awkward.
Even though the comic listing was presented in various articles today, that's quickly changing. Both Comics Beat and Newsarama have pulled the listing without an editorial note. However, while CBR still has a listing, the Muschietti cover is no longer visible.
Whether the comic, which has already been delayed until September, will be edited or even released at all at this point remains to be seen.
Is The Flash Nearing a Flash Point?
While Muschietti no doubt drew this variant cover long before Ezra Miller's arrest, given the current state of affairs, the image feels like a case of poor timing and bad taste.
The question of whether it will be edited or even released is a bit of a bellwether for the kind of questions Warner Bros. will face with The Flash's marketing campaign. As the actor's current problems are addressed, and if they continue to increase, it will become harder and harder for the studio to even promote the film since Miller plays the title hero.
Since The Flash has been "extraordinarily well-received" by audiences in early test screenings, it's likely that the studio will move forward with the film while avoiding anything, like the comic book cover, that will draw attention to the Ezra Miller controversy.
The question, of course, is whether there is a breaking point where, like today's cover reveal, it's just not possible to include Miller as part of the promotion - or even the film - itself.
The Flash is set to premiere in theaters on June 23, 2023.