In the realm of comic book movies, the typical path for a major character is to go from making a solo title to a team-up feature -- but that's not exactly what's happening with Jason Momoa's Aquaman in the DC Extended Universe. Briefly introduced in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, the hero is getting his first live-action big screen role in Justice League before moving on to his own story in 2018's Aquaman, essentially taking the normal path in reverse. As you'd imagine, it's going to have an effect on the way we perceive Arthur Curry when we first meet him -- but according to Momoa, that's all part of the plan:
When I stepped into his room, [Zack Snyder] told me his vision of me playing this character. The one thing that was really concerning when I did my homework, I knew that [Justice League] would be basically a weekend in his life. And I just want to make sure that the fans knew that this gruff character, this man who lives within the tides and is not really accepted in two different places... we needed to know where he came from and why he's this grumpy, bit of an asshole to Batman. We just needed to figure out... I want people to know that in a year you're going to understand where he came from, what happened to his mother, what happened to his father, and how he was treated in this world, and how he didn't know how to use his powers.
Jason Momoa had the opportunity to talk about his Aquaman experience at length this past weekend in London, where the actor participated in the press junket for Justice League. During the press conference, which I personally attended, I asked the actor about moving the character in reverse though a team-up title and then a and solo movie, and he explained that there is a certain progression that fans will discover, and it's why Arthur Curry isn't the hero we all recognize when he first appears on screen in Zack Snyder's new blockbuster.
Scheduled for release in December 2018, the Aquaman movie from director James Wan will give audiences a much bigger sense of who the eponymous hero is as a character, and, according to Momoa, will help him evolve into the man he is meant to become. In Justice League, he is certainly rough around the edges and doesn't seem incredibly invested the whole "superhero" lifestyle, but that's just because he is still at the start of his big screen journey. He'll begin his process of growing in the team-up title, but will find his true individuality in the solo flick.
At the press conference, Jason Momoa explained that the Aquaman title will be the real opportunity to see the fully sculpted version of the character, including where he comes from and who he is meant to be. The way he paints it, it should be a great chance to dive into the complexity of a hero who is torn between two worlds and yet belongs to neither of them. Said Momoa,
Sometimes he saved people, and sometimes he lost people, and his human side didn't know how to deal with those things. And he would cover up those things, and so he's hiding behind... there's a lot of layers to this guy, and I think once we get to the solo film you're going to see the man who is going to take responsibility and help the world and become king, eventually. So this one, I don't really think... he is Aquaman, he's Arthur Curry. But he hasn't dealt with the Trident yet. And it's coming, but just stick with it. But for people who are like, 'That's not my Aquaman!' Just wait a little bit longer. Just stick with it for a little bit longer.
You can watch Jason Momoa talk about the evolution of Aquaman from Justice League to his solo film by clicking play on the video below!