“Aquaman” was a massive blockbuster, now “Aquaman 2: Lost Kingdom” is in the pipeline – and would have fared poorly in test screenings. But there is still time until the cinema release on December 21, 2023…
Start date shifts, issues with actress Amber Heard over her legal battle against Johnny Depp, and alleged budget constraints on James Wan filming – the production history of “Aquaman 2: Lost Kingdom” hasn’t been easy so far. Now there’s another setback for the DC adventure starring Jason Momoa, or at least that’s what reports of the film in test screenings suggest.
“Aquaman 2” was said to have been poorly received by test audiences. While such rumors should of course always be treated with caution, the tweet from the usually well-informed industry insider Jeff Sneider has now drawn more attention to the topic. Sneider writes that he’s heard that Aquaman 2 is “awful and that’s why Momoa will be playing Lobo in the future.” Only this cannot be announced now, because then “Aquaman 2” would already be a failure. DC hopes to get another billion from the box office first. Sneider personally adds, “The first one was awful too, so no big surprise.”
I hear it’s terrible and that’s why Momoa becomes Lobo in the future. But they can’t say that yet, because then it would be a lame duck… and DC hopes to squeeze another billion out of the box office. The first one was also terrible so no big surprise. https://t.co/VlbUoqILDm
— Jeff Sneider (@TheInSneider) February 20, 2023
With this tweet, Jeff Sneider pointed to the Tweet from the scooper @bigscreenleaks responded. He writes that he deliberately refrained from commenting on the topic at first, but since Reddit user ViewerAnon had brought up the topic of bad test impressions, Unfortunately, he had to agree: the test screenings of “Aquaman 2” didn’t go down well.
James Wan is still editing Aquaman 2
But what does that mean for “Aquaman 2”? First, test screenings are there to fix any issues with a movie. There’s still time until the cinema release on December 21, 2023 – director James Wan can and will lend a hand again. @bigscreenleaks also writes, “I really hope Wan can fix the movie in December.”
In addition, the reactions of a test audience are not always a reliable indicator of how a film will ultimately be received after it is released in theaters. For example, test screenings for David Ayer’s “Suicide Squad” in 2016 went well – in theaters, the DC comics adaptation largely fell through with critics** and fans. As always, the rule is wait and see. In the case of “Aquaman 2”, it should not be ignored that the first test screenings in the summer of 2022 would not have gone particularly well. So what’s been done with the movie so far doesn’t seem to have improved the situation at first.
Lobo or Aquaman?
But does that mean Jason Momoa is really going to be Lobo in the DC Universe? That has not been said at all – and whether really bad test screenings of “Aquaman 2” would be the reason remains to be seen. Rather, the decision of whether and how Aquaman will continue in the new DCU and whether Jason Momoa will continue to be seen as a trident-wielding superhero or Lobo will depend on James Gunn’s plans for the recast – in which he has not yet put committed to Aquaman commented on Lobo. It’s been known for a long time that Momoa would love to play Lobo, but in the end, he’s sure to go it alone An Embody role in DCU.
“Aquaman” at Amazon*
It is possible that Arthur Curry aka Aquaman will continue to be part of the DC movie universe, even if Gunn and his colleague Peter Safran plan a lot of changes – after all, “Aquaman 2” should lead directly to “Superman: Legacy”, the first film of the “new” DCU.
However, Aquaman’s future will likely not be finally decided until after its theatrical release, when it’s clear how successful the series will continue to be. After all, “Aquaman” grossed an impressive $1.148 billion at the box office in 2018, with mixed reviews – at Metacritic, “Aquaman” received 55 points out of 100 from 50 rated reviews.
Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa & Co. in the new DC Universe: what’s next for Aquaman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Shazam & Blue Beetle?
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