There's no denying that superhero content has dominated film for the last decade. Yes, we've had influential superhero films for much longer; however, the genre-boom has opened up the doors for avenues of storytelling that once felt unfathomable.
Now that the upcoming DC film The Flash is confirmed to usher in the return of Michael Keaton's Batman, we could be witnessing the first step at a broader expansion of stories from the past, present, and how they can work together to build a new future. With Keaton and Tim Burton's Batman films being added to the new DC film canon, there's a lot of potential for more crossovers, and we already have a few returning key players in mind.
Catwoman ― Michelle Pfeiffer
There are so many versions of Catwoman (comics, animated series, animated films, live-action films, etc.), but none have made as large of an impact as Phippher's in Batman Returns.
Her timid, exploited role as Selina Kyle drastically shifted to fearless leather-clad Catwoman was one of the best thematic choices of Burton's brainchild. The chemistry between Keaton and Pfeiffer was electric for the ill-fated lovers, building up to an ending that teased more to come.
If we are given a chance to return to this Burton-esque Batman world for a decent portion of the film, it would be a missed opportunity not to include Pfeiffer in some capacity. As much as I appreciate all interpretations of the character, if we're really bringing Catwoman back into the fold, there's no better option.
Doctor Manhattan ― Billy Crudup or Yahya Abdul-Mateen II
Ok, this isn't going to be a choice that's for everyone, but it's still a choice! After the Doomsday Clock storyline managed to merge Watchmen with the DC universe, there's been a drive to see more.
On the one hand, we have Zack Snyder's 2009 Watchmen that was massively underrated, with Crudup giving a stoic performance that perfectly captured the essence of the detached character. On the other hand, there's Abdul-Mateen II, who equally delivered excellence when he portrayed the character in HBO's recent sequel series to the original Watchmen comic book storylines.
Having two options to choose from would make this ideal; however, something as prominent as a Doctor Manhattan merger with DC films would need to be a major movie event that would need to establish a larger interconnected universe to some capacity. We can dream, right?
Superman ― Brandon Routh
We're pretty much Superman-less for the time being, and I have a feeling that won't be changing anytime soon. Fans have held out hope for Henry Cavill's return to DC, but the more time passes by, the less likely it seems.
Despite Cavill's possible departure from the role of Superman, we were given a less talked about, solid story back in 2006 with Superman Returns. In Superman Returns, Routh plays the titular character, and the film was actually well-liked by most critics and moviegoers but didn't quite make enough money back to call it an actual "box-office hit." Though plans for a sequel were in place, and the character has sort of returned in the Arrowverse for CW, Routh's Superman wholeheartedly deserves a second chance.
His portrayal of the character felt like a true, aspirational take on Superman that actually maintains some of the best heroism of all of the DC films we've seen throughout the years. The film bridges a modern superhero film with a nostalgic appreciation for what came before, and that cohesion is everything the next wave of DC needs.
What DC characters would you like to see make a return in future films? Any takers on a Ryan Reynolds Green Lantern comeback or no?