Two Disney Animation Giants Are Taking Their Talents Over To DC

DC Comics artwork of Metal Men
(Image credit: DC Comics)

While the majority of the DC Comics movies released in theaters are live-action offerings, every now and then an animated one will get time to shine on the big screen/ This most recently happened with Teen Titans Go! To the Movies, and next year will see DC League of Super-Pets following in its footsteps. Well, today brings word that Ron Clements and John Musker, two Disney animation giants, have been recruited by DC to tackle an animated Metal Men movie.

The duo behind Disney classics like The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, The Princess and the Frog and Moana (among many other Mouse House movies) are joining forces with Space Jam: A New Legacy’s Celeste Ballard to a make a cinematic Metal Men tale for Warner Animation Group, per THR. Ron Clements and John Musker have already written a treatment for The Metal Men and are attached to produce, and they’re looking to direct the feature as well. Ballard’s other credits include the TBS series Wrecked and the MTV series Sweet Vicious.

Introduced in 1962’s Showcase #37, the Metal Men are intelligent robots created by the scientist known as Dr. Will Magnus. The team is comprised of Gold, Iron, Lead, Mercury, Tin and Platinum, and each of these robots’ special abilities and personalities are reflective of their respective metals. There have also been stories where the six Metal Men have combined into one gigantic form called Alloy.

Outside of the comics, the Metal Men have appeared in projects like Batman: The Brave and the Bold, their own series of DC Nation Shorts, Justice League: The New Frontier, Justice League: Gods and Monsters and DC Super Hero Girls: Intergalactic Games. There have also been multiple attempts to get a live-action Metal Men movie off the ground, with people like X-Men producer Lauren Shuler Donner and Men in Black director Barry Sonnenfeld being attached to those efforts at different times. Now though, DC is looking to spotlight these characters in a theatrical setting through animation instead.

If you’re going to hire Disney talent to oversee the development of your animated superhero movie, Ron Clements and John Musker are unquestionably wise recruits. The Little Mermaid and Aladdin are two of the most cherished movies from the Disney Renaissance era, and both The Princess and the Frog and Moana (the former Disney’s last 2D-animated movie) were both met with positive critical reception. While superheroes are outside of their normal wheelhouse, it’ll be interesting to see how their take on the Metal Men shapes out.

The Metal Men aren’t well-known characters in the DC Comics pantheon to the general public, but with Ron Clements and John Musker attached to this animated movie, not only will it boost their popularity, I see a scenario where the movie achieves the same kind of critical acclaim that 2018’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse received. We’ll keep you apprised on The Metal Men’s development as more details come in, including who’s cast to voice these heroes.

In the meantime, look through our guide detailing other upcoming DC Comics movies and head over to HBO Max to see what DC goodies the platform has to offer.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore, Adam is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend. He started working for the site back in late 2014 writing exclusively comic book movie and TV-related articles, and along with branching out into other genres, he also made the jump to editing. Along with his writing and editing duties, as well as interviewing creative talent from time to time, he also oversees the assignment of movie-related features. He graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Journalism, and he’s been sourced numerous times on Wikipedia. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.