Warning: SPOILERS for Justice League are ahead!
Traditionally when the main Justice League team forms, a Green Lantern is one of the founding members, whether it's Hal Jordan, John Stewart or one of Earth's many other Emerald Knights. Alas, the DC Extended Universe opted not to go in this direction, and while Batman, Wonder Woman, Superman, Flash, Aquaman and Cyborg make a powerful team, they currently aren't allied with anyone who can channel the green energy of willpower. However, with Green Lantern Corps being one of the many DCEU projects in development, Justice League made sure to set up that cosmic corner of the DC universe by including a few Green Lanterns in the flashback battle.
Justice League marked the second time that Steppenwolf and his Parademon army tried to conquer and remake Earth in Apokolips' image. The first invasion occurred thousands of years earlier, and it was only thanks to humans, Amazons, Atlanteans and the Olympian Gods joining forces that Steppenwolf's army was thwarted. But it wasn't just the denizens of Earth who participated in this epic conflict. Several members of the Green Lantern Corps also lent assistance, although one of these Lanterns was killed by Steppenwolf, which prompted the holder's ring to fly off its finger and find a new individual worthy enough to wield it. We also saw the ring's ability to create physical constructs when one of the Green Lanterns formed a giant hand and another one formed a giant hammer. The Lanterns weren't named during this sequence, but if you fall somewhere on the scale between longtime comic book reader and having only seen the Ryan Reynolds-led movie, then you likely recognized these verdant defenders.
Before Justice League's release, it had been rumored that at least one Green Lantern would appear in the superhero team-up movie. Eventually an appearance from one of the human ones was ruled out, and while there was a time where it was alleged that Abin Sur, Hal Jordan's predecessor, could be the one to appear, obviously that proved incorrect. Unfortunately, the appearance of those Green Lanterns millennia ago doesn't clue us in on what the deal is with the Green Lantern Corps in the present day. In the Justice League trailer that debuted at San Diego Comic-Con earlier this year, Steppenwolf was heard saying that Earth doesn't have any Lanterns. Whether he meant Earth and the rest of Sector 2814 literally doesn't have a Green Lantern to protect it or if the 2814 Lantern was occupied elsewhere was unclear, though it was ultimately rendered a moot point since that chunk of dialogue was removed from the theatrical release. However, since a Green Lantern didn't show up to help the Justice Leaguers battle Steppenwolf, one wouldn't be foolish in wondering if Earth is indeed without a Lantern.
Which brings us to the Green Lantern Corps movie, which will reportedly feature Hal Jordan and John Stewart in a buddy cop, Lethal Weapon-style cosmic adventure. David Goyer and Justin Rhodes are tackling the script, and while actors like Tom Cruise and James Marsden were reportedly being looked at to play Jordan, few details concerning the will-powered project have emerged since the beginning of the year. Given how critically derided the 2011 Green Lantern movie was, DC and Warner Bros need to take extra precaution to ensure that Green Lantern Corps doesn't meet a similar fate. Taking the action away from Earth should help with that since many of the best Green Lantern stories happen when the human Emerald Knights are off-planet. That being said, if Justice League 2 gets off the ground, that should be when a human Green Lantern is added to the team's ranks. After all, as Diana Prince told Bruce Wayne when they were planning to turn Wayne Manor into the Hall of Justice, even though the meeting table will have six designated spots, there will be "room for more." Why not add an intergalactic beat cop who can overcome fear and channel willpower through green energy?
Green Lantern Corps was originally scheduled to be released in summer 2020, but given all the shakeups that have occurred in the DCEU and the numerous other projects that have been announced in recent years, it remains to be seen if it's still a priority for the franchise or has been put on the back burner. Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more updates on Green Lantern Corps' progress, and check out our DC movies guide to see what else is coming down the pipeline.