“Insidious” director to take over Warner Bros. “Aquaman”

aquamanBy Craig Martin

James Wan, the director mainly known for his horror films, such as “Insidious” and “The Conjuring,” has closed a deal to develop and direct “Aquaman,” one of the several films that will be a part of Warner Bros.’ new DC cinematic universe. The film will star Jason Momoa as the titular Aquaman and is set to be released on July 27, 2018.

At the same time, Wan has also been pegged to direct another massive film project, “Robotech,” Sony’s upcoming adaptation of the 1980s anime featuring fighting mechs. I know that’s not very specific in regards to Japanese anime, but what can I say?

The moves clear up Wan’s post-“Fast and Furious 7” future. Many did not give Wan much of a chance with the blockbuster, as he was mainly seen as a “horror guy.” However, the filmmaker became a hot property after his handling on the challenging production and after it became a runaway success with over $1.4 billion in global box office receipts; the highest grossing film in the series.

On top of all of this busy work, Wan is also committed to directing “The Conjuring 2: The Endfield Experiment” for New Line Cinema this fall and will likely be unavailable to tackle his next project until spring 2016.

“Aquaman” is looking to be one of the first films out of the gate in DC’s planned cinematic universe, as it’s further along in the development process of other films like “Green Lantern” and “The Flash.” Wan is also reported to be overseeing the script’s writing by current writer Kurt Johnstad (300, 300: Rise of an Empire). It is a strong testament to the strong desire to work with Wan that both studios are willing to wait for him.

In “Aquaman,” Momoa is portraying the King of Atlantis Arthur Curry and will make his appearance as the character in “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” in a cameo role. Aquaman is also a card-carrying member of DC’s premiere superhero team, the Justice League and will be part of Warners’ two-part “Justice League” movies.

The movie will focus on Aquaman as a reluctant ruler of the underwater kingdom of Atlantis who is caught between land dwellers that are always polluting the globe and his own people who are ready to invade the surface.

“The Aquaman film will be a major tentpole picture for us and James’s span of work has proven him able to take on any manner of project, bringing his incredible creative talent and unique voice to the material,” said Greg Silverman, the studio’s president of creative development and worldwide production.

DC Cinematic Universe creative leads Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder and Zack Snyder are producing “Aquaman.”

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