Box Office Throw Down
We’ve all grown up with the same argument: Marvel or DC? Comic book fans have their own lengthy reasons for choosing one superhero universe over the other, but in 2016, the “normies” are going to get involved too. Well, at least those who go to the movies. Why should they care?
Because on May 6th, 2016, Batman vs. Superman/Man of Steel 2/whateverit’sgoingtobecalled will be going up against Captain America 3.
Now, it’s probably a given that one of these films will move (and according to Bleeding Cool, one of them already has), but if they both stay on that date, it’s going to be the biggest Marvel vs. DC battle since 1996’s mega crossover. If you thought the question “Which is better: Marvel or DC?” caused conniption fits before, just wait until 2016. It’ll most likely cause most heads to explode. A war is brewing folks, but do we really have to take sides?
Up until now, the big question was what Marvel film will be announced on this date. Was it going to be the long rumored Doctor Strange? Nope. Black Panther? No again. Avengers 3? Yeah right.
No, it was revealed the other day that the Sentinel of Liberty himself is going up against the combined might of the Man of Steel and the Dark Knight. Now Marvel is clearly the big dog in the yard, but I highly doubt that even they could beat WB’s tent pole, even with a movie featuring an Avenger in the starring role. Batman/Superman is the clear underdog here, and that’s not just because WB seems to be grasping at straws to create a cohesive DC cinematic universe, but because they’re attempting something they should’ve done years ago with Green Lantern. Yes, the constant rumors of every hero under the DC banner appearing in this film are extremely unsettling, and some of the casting announcements have been….strange, to say the least. But it’s Batman and Superman, two of the planet’s most recognizable fictional characters on the big screen for the first time. Everyone and their mothers will want to see it. This will be the first time in history that both characters will be on the big screen and the first live action Wonder Woman on screen as well. At the very least, it’ll feature things that comic book fans not only haven’t seen before, but have been clamoring for. By the time Captain America 3 will hit theaters, movie goers will have seen Cap on the screen 4 times, and may want to try something new.
And that’s where I stand. I honestly believe that regardless of the final product being good or bad, Superman/Batman will end up winning the box office. I know that it’ll be the film I choose to see first at Midnight because the five year old in me will be brimming with excitement to see these two on the screen together (the adult in me….well, he’s going to see if it’s a colossal train wreck or not). I’ll absolutely still see Captain America 3, and probably forego sleep and see it right after the Midnight showing of Superman/Batman. But I want to see WB’s attempt at starting their cinematic universe, and I think that for all of their complaining a lot of comic fans do too.
I also think it’s a pretty stupid idea to release both of these movies on the same day. Comic book nerds and “normies” will go see both of them in droves, so why split your audience? Why make it a choice of one movie over the other? Moving one of the films by a weekend will make it so both studios can make the most amount of money possible. Of course, that won’t happen, the rivalry will drum up big business for either side, which is stupid. Marvel runs the risk of not premiering at the top of the box since their start as a studio, and is that risk they’re really willing to take?
While it’ll be frustrating for us nerds who want to see the latest comic book film before anybody else, the bright side to these two blockbusters opening up against one another means that Marvel will finally be getting some competition on the superhero movie front. Yes, I know that Spider-Man and the X-Men are with other studios, but I’m talking about other characters that aren’t under the Marvel banner get the big screen treatment. Obviously a Justice League and Avengers film comparison is imminent, but what about other characters? We’ve always compared Captain America and Batman in comics, but what about on screen? Will Wonder Woman’s eventual solo film be a carbon copy of Thor? Regardless of the answers to any of these, what matters most is that Marvel is getting some (hopefully) serious competition at the box office. And like Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige, I welcome it. Anything that will drive both studios to make the best possible films is a good thing in my eyes.