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Despite Aquaman not hitting theaters until 2018, moviegoers will be seeing plenty of the aquatic superhero in the coming years. Jason Momoa will debut as Aquaman next year in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, and will also be one of the lead heroes in both Justice League films. Because the King of Atlantis is one of their priority characters, it’s no surprise that Warner Bros. is already taking steps to find the right creative mind to helm his solo movie, and the latest person in contention for the gig is Furious 7 director James Wan.
Wan is currently the studio’s first choice to direct Aquaman, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Although an official offer hasn’t been made yet, preliminary talks have taken place. Wan isn’t the first filmmaker who’s been associated with Aquaman recently. According to one of the leaked Sony emails from last year, Mud director Jeff Nichols was also being considered to helm the project at one point. Before the movie was officially announced, Warner Bros. reportedly hired Will Beall and Kurt Johnstad to write two separate scripts for the film, and whoever wrote the best one would have it adapted for the DC Cinematic Universe. There’s word yet on which of those two got the job done.
The past week been a good one for Wan. Since opening last Friday, the latest installment in the Fast & Furious franchise has grossed more than $500 million worldwide and earned mostly positive reviews. There’s been no official announcement about whether Furious 8 has been green-lit, let alone whether Wan will return to direct it. If he does, that would certainly present problems for signing onto Aquaman. If Furious 8 becomes a reality, Universal Studios will likely want to get it in theaters by 2017 or 2018, which will almost certainly clash with Aquaman’s heavy production schedule, which could begin in late 2016 or early 2017.
Outside of Furious 7, Wan has made a name for himself directing horror films like Saw (which he also wrote), Insidious, and The Conjuring. Wan will direct The Conjuring 2: The Enfield Poltergeist (another Warner Bros. movie), set for release in June 2016, but that will still give plenty of time to helm Aquaman, assuming he doesn’t come back for Furious 8 or another horror project. However, with Furious 7’s success, Universal still holds the option on Wan’s contract and may want to keep him around. It’s just too soon to tell whether taking on DC’s underwater hero is in the cards for Wan.
Aquaman arrives in theaters on July 27, 2018.