So, James Gunn and Peter Safran have taken over the franchise for Warner. They have already killed projects and announced that they will be announcing something during January (isn’t it fun that we get these announcements for announcements?). I definitely wasn’t a fan of Snyder’s take on DC, but I’m not sure this is a good development.
My real question is do we really need this Extended Universe (or whatever the EU stands for in DCEU)? I liked The Suicide Squade, The Batman and even Joker (even though not as much as certain audiences). I even liked the Birds of Prey movie (the name of which I can’t remember right now). I did not like the Snyder movies I saw. Actually, I found them so uninteresting that I can’t even remember which ones I have seen. I remember enough to know that I have seen the overbloated longer version of Justice League.
So, the way I see it, they were doing fine (qualitywise) when they didn’t emphasize a common storyline between the various characters. While not all of those movies were hits, Joker definitely was and The Batman did well financially as well. So, why not continue doing this? Separate franchises and maybe have them meet every once in a while. Just make those common movies special. This was how it was done in the comics for ages.
At the same time, I do like James Gunn’s work. I think I’ve see all the movies he’s directed and some of the ones he’s only written and I have liked them all, but if the plan is to do the same as Marvel and have four movies a year (I hope they are not going to try to push that many), he can’t possibly direct them all. So, he needs other people to do some or most of the directing. Therefore, not all the movies will be Gunn-movies. Which is also good, as we do want variety.
Can Gunn handle this kind of work? We don’t know. There aren’t many people who have managed to build long-lasting franchises. Gunn has worked on Marvel movies, so he has some experience in this. Besides the two Guardians movies, he was also an executive producer on Infinity War and Endgame, as well as some Guardians-related Disney+ stuff. Its hard to say whether this was just some contractual thing or whether he actually did some work on those, but at least he had access to Kevin Feige.
I would be happy with what they are doing now: Give opportunities to directors to make their own movies. Some of them will work, others not, but for a while now Marvel movies have started to become formulaic, which has given room for the DC-movies, which have surpassed Marvel in quality. If not quality, the DC movies have been more interesting, specifically because the directors have been given room to do their thing.