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Someone is going to have to blink… but no one is thinking about it just yet.
Marvel Studios recently confirmed news that Captain America 3 would commit wholeheartedly to its previously announced May 6, 2016 release date. The reason analysts thought Marvel might back off of said date – even though it is two years away – is because Warner Bros. also booked Zack Snyder’s untitled Batman/Superman movie on that date. And according to Bloomberg, the studio isn’t moving yet, either.
The site quotes Dan Fellman, president of domestic distribution for Warner Bros., who says:
It doesn’t make a lot of sense for two huge superhero films to open on the same date but there is a lot of time between now and [May 6, 2016). However at this time, we are not considering a change of date for Batman vs. Superman."
Oh, we’re back to calling it Batman vs. Superman? That’s cool. That title is really growing on me, and I’ll be annoyed if and when they change it to something like Man of Steel II: The Dark Knight Cape Crusades on the Ashes of Krypton While Wonder Woman Watches. Or something along those lines.
So, will one of the franchises budge? There are pros and cons to both sides. There’s really no reason why Captain America 3 couldn’t shift forward to an April release date. Clearly, Captain America: The Winter Soldier wasn’t hindered by its non-summer release date, opening to an impressive $96 million, setting an April record in the process.
On the flip side, it would be a bold move for Warner and DC to grab that April slot in 2016, doing for Batman vs. Superman what The Winter Soldier just did for Marvel’s patriotic icon. It feels, at this stage, that Snyder has a bit more to prove in terms of his world building than Marvel does. To that end, screenwriter David S. Goyer opened up to IGN on the work they are doing to build their own DC universe, saying:
I know that Warner Bros. would love to make their universe more cohesive. There have been a lot of general conversations about that, but it's really, really early. I'm not sure. Marvel has had enormous success, but I'm not sure that everybody should try to emulate them either. It's just been vague conversations so far."
At the moment, it appears we are on a collision course for May 6, with two of the biggest properties in comic-book movies prepared to go toe-to-toe. From a business perspective, it’s suicide. But will ego allow either studio to back down, and make the wise decision to move? A lot can happen between now and then… and likely will.