DCEU Reboot? Dwayne Johnson Teases 'New Era' of DC Movies

By Aeron Mer Eclarinal Updated:
Black Adam, Justice League DCEU

After significant production delays and being trapped in development hell for years, Black Adam is finally set to premiere in theaters this year. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson will portray the titular anti-hero alongside a stellar cast featuring the Justice Society of America, who will be portrayed by Noah Centineo (Atom Smasher), Pierce Brosnan (Doctor Fate), Quintessa Swindell (Cyclone), and Aldis Hodge (Hawkman). 

The exact plot details are still being kept under wraps, but trailers have confirmed that it will dive into the origin of Teth Adam while also dealing with the ramifications of his awakening in the present day. Still, it is not known how Black Adam will impact the future of the DCEU, considering that the cast and crew are tight-lipped about its connections to the wider franchise. 

Now, an interesting quote from Johnson during the movie's highly-anticipated Hall H panel may have shed some light on Black Adam's impact on the DCEU.

Is Dwayne Johnson Teasing a DCEU Reboot?

Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam, Black Adam

During DC's Hall H panel at this year's San Diego Comic-Con, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, via Comicbook,  shared that the goal of Black Adam is to “usher in a new era in the DC universe.”

Johnson was offering high praise to Black Adam director Jaume Collet-Serra, pointing out that he was the right man to create this unique DC movie which then led to him asking fans:  

"What does that character [Black Adam] mean? What does it mean to build out the DC universe with the Justice Society as well?”  

It is unknown if Johnson is teasing a DCEU reboot or if Black Adam is the first movie set in the new timeline after the Multiverse adventure of Ezra Miller's Flash. 

Aldis Hodge, who portrays Hawkman in the movie, also opened up about playing Carter Hall alongside the rest of the Justice Society of America; 

"Man, this is such an honor and a privilege. One of those career life-long dreams. It's amazing because of who Carter Hall is. To be with the JSA, the very first unified superhero team in existence. JSA! We started this sh...!"

Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam, Aldis Hodge as Hawkman, Black Adam

Noah Centineo, who plays Atom Smasher, said that it "blew my mind" to join Black Adam and be a part of this "resurgence." The Charlie's Angels actor recalled that the studio wanted a "youthful side" for the JSA, teasing that his character "really wants to prove himself as a hero" despite having "a little bit of villainy:"

"If you've read the comics, you know he comes from a pedigree of heroism and a little bit of villainy...with that, he really wants to prove himself as a hero...this is a young kid that wants to find his way in life... You usually see super heroes who are fully formed version of themselves and in this film you get to see two heroes figure out what being a super hero is."

Meanwhile, Quintessa Swindell also revealed what makes Cyclone special in the movie, admitting that the character has a "powerful" journey ahead: 

"Playing Cyclone, to be honest, it's like the biggest honor of my life so far. The character is so... she's so unique and in a way I'm just very protective over her because there's this light that she has and in and of itself, her journey, the way she got her powers and the way she's choosing to experience them...that's just so powerful."

Fans can watch the full trailer here: 

How Black Adam Fits in the Wider DCEU 

The confirmation that Peacemaker and The Suicide Squad characters Amanda Waller and Emilia Harcourt are part of Black Adam indicates that the film is still set within the interconnected DCEU franchise. However, Dwayne Johnson's comments about Black Adam ushering in "a new era in the DC Universe" could suggest that the movie is an important piece in the DCEU puzzle. 

It's possible that Johnson's remark implies that Black Adam would serve as the launchpad of new spin-off films or series featuring members of the Justice Society of America, or he could have been looking ahead at an actual movie centered on the team. Still, the WWE Legend did tease that the movie would "build out the DC Universe with the Justice Society," meaning that the JSA could be the recognized heroes of Earth, while others like the Justice League presumably take the back seat. 

It remains to be seen how heroes like Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman and Jason Momoa's Aquaman would react to Black Adam's arrival, but it's reasonable to assume that the destruction left by the anti-hero would be noticed by these heroes. It's likely that the Justice League's response to Black Adam's debut will be addressed in a potential sequel, considering that the film is laser-focused on introducing the new character to the DCEU. 

Granted that the true plan of the DCEU is still in flux, it is made clear that Johnson is aware of the franchise's future, and his comments simply mean that Black Adam and the JSA would serve as significant parts of it.

Black Adam is set to premiere in theaters on Friday, October 21. 

- About The Author: Aeron Mer Eclarinal
Aeron is a news/features writer and Content Lead for The Direct who has been working for the site since March 2020. From writing about the inter-connectivity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to having an extended knowledge about DC TV's Arrowverse, Aeron's expertise has since expanded into the realm of reality TV, K-drama, animated, and live-action shows from Netflix,  Disney+, Prime Video, MGM+, Peacock, Paramount+, and Max. When he isn't writing and watching all things MCU, Aeron is heavily invested with the NBA (go Celtics!) and occasionally watches thrilling matches in the WWE.