James Gunn’s Reason For Not Directing A Superman Movie For DC Is Pretty Solid

Superman in court in Batman v Superman

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It’s no secret that comic book movies are everywhere. And with various cinematic universes currently in the works, some talent has been able to pivot to multiple franchises. Guardians of the Galaxy visionary James Gunn is making his DC debut with The Suicide Squad this August, but he was also approached about helming a Superman flick. Although Gunn’s reasoning for not directing his own Superman movie is pretty solid.

The DC Extended Universe began with Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel, but there’s been no indication if/when that property might continue. J.J. Abrams is currently attached to develop his own Superman flick, although that'll be seemingly disconnected from Henry Cavill's franchise. James Gunn himself was approached to possibly put his spin on The Last Son of Krypton, but explained why he was averse to the idea, saying:

Things like Superman, Justice League, people have so many ideas about who they are that it seems like less of a fun playground.

That was honest. And while moviegoers would love to see James Gunn put his signature style and POV onto big DC properties like Superman or Justice League, he’s seemingly not interested. Instead, Gunn would rather put his own spin on a project that has fewer expectations.

James Gunn’s comments to EW come as the highly anticipated release of The Suicide Squad draws ever closer. We’re just weeks away from seeing what sort of R-rated debauchery Gunn has in store for his DCEU debut. While it was previously revealed that Superman was also on the table for Gunn, his reason behind shying away from Clark Kent remained a mystery until now.

The Suicide Squad will arrive on HBO Max at the same time a theaters. You can use this link to sign up for the streaming service.

The pressure that comes with IPs like Superman and Justice League can certainly be seen in the way that fans rallied around Zack Snyder upon the 2017 theatrical release of Justice League. If Snyder was focused on a lesser known property, moviegoers might have been less interested in making sure his vision was realized. And where James Gunn is concerned, he’s already proven his ability to make a motley crew of unknown characters into fan favorites.

The first Guardians of the Galaxy movie was seen as a risk, making history as the MCU’s first cosmic story, while also focusing on a team of unknown heroes. But Gunn’s love for the comics, sense of humor, and even taste in music helped the movie become a massive success. And now the Guardians are some of the most popular heroes in the entire shared universe.

Luckily, James Gunn’s vision for The Suicide Squad is nearly here, arriving in theaters on August 6th. In the meantime, check out the 2021 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.