Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke, is among the more popular members of DC Comics' lineup of villains, and since last year, we've known that he'll eventually be appearing in the DC films universe. It was announced that Joe Manganiello will play the one-eyed assassin in The Batman, but since Matt Reeves took over as director on the Caped Crusader's movie, there's been no mention of Deathstroke still being that story's main antagonist. However, now there's word that DC has put a Deathstroke movie into development, and The Raid's Gareth Evans is being eyed to direct.
It's being reported that Gareth Evans is in early discussions with DC and Warner Bros to helm a Deathstroke movie, which would still star Joe Manganiello as the principal character. When Matt Reeves succeeded Ben Affleck as The Batman's director, the man behind the latter two Planet of the Apes reboots decided to start the story from scratch, and while it hasn't been explicitly stated yet, it appears that Deathstroke is no longer expect to appear in that movie. However, according to The Wrap's scoop, Gareth Evans, who had previously passed on directing Justice League Dark, impressed the DC executives with his pitch for a Deathstroke movie, so they're now moving ahead with a spinoff film centered on the villain/occasional anti-hero.
In addition to directing both of The Raid movies, Gareth Evans' filmography includes Merantu, Killers and the upcoming Apostle. He is also attached as a producer for the American remake of The Raid, which will be directed by Joe Carnahan. Given his experience with the action genre, Evans is certainly a fitting choice to helm a movie centered on Deathstroke, one of the most talented fighters in the DC Comics universe.
Since debuting in 1980's New Teen Titans #2, Deathstroke has established himself as an adversary for nearly every DC hero, although his more frequent foes include the Teen Titans, Batman and Green Arrow. In addition to his natural combat skills, Slade Willson possesses enhanced strength, speed, agility and durability thanks to an experimental serum. This serum also gave him a healing factor, although these regenerative abilities have limits, as they've never been enough to heal his eye. In addition to antagonizing various heroes in their own books, Deathstroke has led several comic book series over the decades, including the current one that's part of the DC Rebirth relaunch.
Outside of the comics, Deathstroke's numerous media appearances include the Teen Titans animated series, Young Justice, Beware the Batman, Justice League: Crisis of Two Earths (albeit an parallel universe version of him), Son of Batman, Teen Titans: The Judas Contract, Smallville and Batman: Arkham Origins. However, until Deathstroke makes his theatrical debut, his biggest live action presence remains the CW series Arrow, where he's played by Spartacus' Manu Bennett.
Keep checking back with CinemaBlend for any updates concerning the Deathstroke movie, and be sure to look through our DC movie guide to find out what other projects this franchise has coming down the pipeline.