James Gunn Announces Unexpected First Superhero for DC's Rebooted Universe

By Savannah Sanders Updated:
James Gunn DC

James Gunn's anticipated DC reboot has already begun and its first hero isn't Superman

In fact, this surprising superhero makes his big-screen debut this year on August 18, and in one of the last DC films from the prior DCU

James Gunn Confirms DC Reboot's First Hero

Blue Beetle movie

On the Inside of You podcast with Michael Rosenbaum, James Gunn revealed that Blue Beetle will feature the first superhero of the new DCU. 

In discussing the differences between Marvel and DC and the subject of tone, Gunn stated that "the first DCU character, for sure, is Blue Beetle:"

“… Because, relatively, the MCU and now the DCU in film, which really doesn’t start… I mean the first DCU character, for sure, is Blue Beetle, and the first full DCU movie is 'Superman: [Legacy]'."

Starring Xolo Maridueña as Jaime Reyes, Blue Beetle is an origin story where Reyes becomes the avatar for an alien bioweapon known as the Scarab

After confirming the character's presence in both his and Peter Safran's reboot, Gunn went on to explain his thoughts on franchise tone, saying:

"Now that that’s happening, it’s relatively new. The same thing with Marvel. I mean, even the MCU is relatively new. So I don’t know if there’s any innate things about tone, because I think that what both MCU and DCU need to do is to have a wider range of tones than they presently do. I think they work to do that, but I think they can do a better job of it.”

Why DC Fans Should Invest in Blue Beetle

This official confirmation from the DC Studios co-head follows reports that Blue Beetle was being carried over into the studio's new vision.

It's also exactly what Blue Beetle's own Xolo Maridueña has been hoping for, saying, "we're ready for the whole nine..."

Still, it's important to note that Gunn said Blue Beetle was the first character while Superman: Legacy is the first film. 

Whether the future DCU will reference Jaime Reyes' cinematic origin story, or forget it altogether, and just how that all will work, is unknown. 

But the fact Gunn is confirming this now, and before Blue Beetle's theatrical premiere, not only suggests his confidence in the film and its cast but also a plan for the character moving forward. 

While it's true that reception for the film's trailer was mixed, his guaranteed DC future gives audiences a reason to invest in this story and this hero. 

Fans should expect to hear more about Blue Beetle - and his now-certain DCU future - in the coming weeks. 

Blue Beetle arrives in theaters on August 18.

- In This Article: Blue Beetle
Release Date
August 18, 2023
George Lopez
Susan Sarandon
- About The Author: Savannah Sanders
Savannah Sanders joined The Direct as a writer in 2020. In addition to writing for The Direct's Star Wars, Marvel, and DC teams, Savannah specializes in the relationship between Disney's blockbuster franchises and the Disney Parks.