While Warner Bros. struggles with DC’s live action movie adaptations, the Animation department keeps hitting it out of the park. Here is our first look at their latest endeavor, JUSTICE LEAGUE: WAR.
Produced by James Tucker and directed by Jay Oliva, the same team that brought us JUSTICE LEAGUE: FLASHPOINT, WAR serves as a sequel of sorts by loosely following the comics. In the 4-color world, the FLASHPOINT event served as the catalyst to rebooting the DC Universe leading directly into the New 52. WAR adapts the League’s first adventure (by DC bigwigs Geoff Johns & Jim Lee) in the newly minted ‘verse which sees the team band together to fight the invading forces of Darkseid.
The voice cast is intriguing with big names in the land of nerdy goodness including Jason O’Mara, Christopher Gorham (JAKE 2.0, represent!), Sean Astin, and the very enjoyable Alan Tudyk. Michelle Monaghan plays Wonder Woman, which is the bit of casting I’m most curious about. There’s something odd in one of the scenes in the trailer but I think it may be more the editing (and line choice) than anything. I’m also very curious to hear Shemar Moore (Criminal Minds) as Cyborg, previously voiced in FLASHPOINT by Michael B. Jordan.
The biggest difference between this and the comics (besides Wonder Woman’s costume) is that Aquaman has been replaced by Captain Marvel, aka Shazam. They’ve been pushing Billy Batson and his magical alter ego to the front a lot lately, which is a bit odd. YOUNG JUSTICE already did and fan-freaking-tastic job with him but he was more akin to the pre-boot Billy than the New52 version (who’s jerk quotient is exponentially higher initially) so it’ll be interesting to see how he turns out here. I can’t think of a major reason for the character switch, especially since they’ve been working so hard to increase Aquaman’s cache in the last few years (and his entrance is pretty dope). Are they saving Arthur for something else? Is he the one character they find more problematic to adapt than Wonder Woman? Only time will tell.
So I’m excited to see JL: WAR, as I am with pretty much every animated movie they do. My only real concern is if this means we’ll only get New52 adaptations from now. I really hope not. It’s terribly limiting, especially considering they’ve already cancelled about half of the books they started out with and replaced them with BatBooks, and there are a ton of stories and pre52 characters that deserve the animated treatment (like Birds of Prey, Wonder Woman: Gods of Gotham, Secret Six, Teen Titans, Batgirl: Year One, some Wally West/Flash Family action, and the Legion of SuperHeroes to name a few). Until we know what’s up, I intend to enjoy this one.
When the powerful Darkseid and his massive, relentless forces invade Earth, a group of previously unaligned super heroes – misunderstood and, in some cases, hunted by the authorities – discover the only way to fend off the attack will be to work together as a cohesive unit. Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Flash, Shazam and, in his origin story, Cyborg combine their respective talents in an all-out battle to save the planet. Based on the 2012 graphic novel, “Justice League: Origin,” by Geoff Johns & Jim Lee, JUSTICE LEAGUE: WAR provides a glance into the world before the Justice League was created, and offers the initial animated incarnation of DC Entertainment’s “The New 52.”
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will distribute JUSTICE LEAGUE: WAR as a Bu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and for Digital Download on February 4, 20131