The DCEU's Final Movie Gets Release Update from WB Amid Delay Concerns

By Nathan Johnson Posted:
DC Justice League movie poster - The Flash, Aquaman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, and Cyborg

Warner Bros. recently gave fans an update on when to expect Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, as well as other upcoming movies such as Dune: Part Two.

Aquaman 2 will be the last entry in the DCEU when it is finally released in theaters. The film was actually supposed to come out last year on December 16, 2022, befor being delayed to March 17, 2023. However, it was ultimately pushed back again to December 25, 2023, and then finally moved back forward to December 20, 2023.

A recent report regarding when the movie would hit theaters was released, telling fans to expect it to not be moved at all. However, it was also revealed that other Warner Bros. movies may not be safe and would likely be delayed.

Many fans expected the release date for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom to change yet again due to the ongoing Writers Guild of America (WGA) and Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA) strikes.

Aquaman 2 Receives Official Release Update

Aquaman Jason Momoa

As shared by Rotten Tomatoes on X (formerly known as Twitter), Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, which will serve as the final title within the DCEU, still has an official release date of December 20, 2023.

This means that, despite the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, it seems as though the movie will not be delayed any further than it already was.

This comes as a bit of a surprise since Warner Bros. also announced that it is delaying other major blockbusters such as Dune: Part Two and Godzilla x Kong.

Dune: Part Two was initially set to hit theaters on November 3, 2023, but it was pushed back into the next calendar year with a specific release date of March 15, 2024.

Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire was also delayed by Warner Bros. Its theatrical premiere was supposed to happen on March 15, 2024, which is now occupied by Dune 2, so it will instead be released a month later on April 12, 2024.

Similar to how Godzilla x Kong was handled, Warner Bros.' upcoming animated film The Lord of the Rings: The Ride of the Rohirrim was also moved back.

It was scheduled to hit theaters on Godzilla x Kong's new release date, so it was pushed back to December 13, 2024. 

Why Did Warner Bros. Not Delay Aquaman 2?

It may seem a little odd that Warner Bros. would delay so many of its big upcoming releases while choosing to leave Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom right where it has been for a while.

It is highly unlikely that the current strikes have anything to do with it staying there because, if anything, they would cause a movie to actually get delayed, so the only possible explanation is that Warner Bros. is ready to say goodbye to the DCEU.

Since James Gunn and Peter Safran will be creating an entirely new franchise in the form of the DCU starting with Superman: Legacy on July 11, 2025, it would make sense that Warner Bros. would want as much time as possible in between it and Aquaman 2.

While it would be wrong to judge a film prematurely, it is important to note that the DCEU's recent track record when it comes to the box office isn't good at all.

Black Adam only made $393.3 million worldwide, which isn't a success by any measure.

Shazam! Fury of the Gods, which followed that film, made even less money, coming in at $133.8 million globally.

There is also The Flash, which may have earned more revenue than Shazam! 2 when it brought in $268.5 million, but due to its budget it is one of the biggest box office flops of all time.

Since a lot of recent DCEU entries have not performed well for Warner Bros., the company probably expects Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom to follow suit.

Therefore, it would only make sense for Warner Bros. to go ahead and hit the reset button, getting the film out to the public as quickly as possible so all eyes can be pointed toward Gunn and Safran's new franchise.

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is expected to hit theaters on December 20, 2023.

- In This Article: Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom
Release Date
December 22, 2023
- About The Author: Nathan Johnson
Nathan is a writer at The Direct where he covers Star Wars, the MCU, and DC news. He joined The Direct in April 2021 and currently writes news and feature articles about all three brands mentioned above, but his main specialty is his knowledge about anything and everything Star Wars.