4 DC Superhero Movies Are Coming Out in 2023; How Many Does Marvel Have In Store?
With James Gunn and Peter Safran co-leading the new DC direction, Warner Bros. has officially announced four films slated for release in 2023.
The studio has been in disarray the last couple of years – they shelved Batgirl at the last minute, they've pushed back the release of a few movies, and they've seemed generally directionless since the disappointing 2017 Justice League. The shared universe approach of the DCEU commencing with Man of Steel in 2013 was meant to go toe-to-toe with the MCU, but they've ultimately fallen short.
With a huge 2023 ahead and the MCU's Phase 4 yielding mixed reviews, the hope from WB is that they can usurp Disney and Marvel as the top studio in the superhero genre.
What is DC releasing in 2023?
Shazam! Fury of the Gods will hit theaters on March 17, the first DC film of 2023. The follow-up to 2019's Shazam! starring ex-Marvel actor Zachary Levi will feature the new Daughters of Atlas, played by Lucy Liu, Helen Mirren, and Rachel Zeigler. The first film had one of the lowest grosses at the box office, but had critically high marks and was beloved as a family-oriented action film.
The Flash had trouble getting off the ground, as star Ezra Miller has had a lot of off-screen issues plaguing his branding. The film is slated for release on June 23, featuring the return of Michael Keaton as Batman and the introduction of Supergirl.
The Flash will supposedly finally introduce the DC Multiverse – just as the MCU is cracking into theirs.
The least well-known of the four 2023 DC projects is Blue Beetle, scheduled for an August 18 release. Originally meant to be an HBO Max streaming exclusive, the film stars Xolo Mariduenao as Jaime Reyes, a teenager granted superpowers via an alien suit.
Another film with a delayed release due to the off-screen actions of a star, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is set for a Christmas Day 2023 release. Jason Mamoa returns as the Atlantian hero in the sequel to the highest-grossing DCEU film, 2018's Aquaman. The release date has been set and changed a few times over, in part due to star Amber Heard 's recent controversies.
What is the MCU releasing in 2023?
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania recently released its first trailer, officially kicking off Phase 5. Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly return as the titular superheroes as they explore the Quantum Realm on February 17. The film stands to be an important one in the future of the MCU – it will feature the cinematic introduction to Jonathan Major's Kang the Conqueror, who will be the new "big bad" for the Multiverse Saga.
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We last saw the Guardians of the Galaxy in 2022's Thor: Love and Thunder, but their story will continue in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 on May 5. The film, directed by new DC co-head James Gunn, will be introducing the powerful Adam Warlock played by Will Poulter. It's been heavily hinted that this will be the last film with this lineup of the Guardians.
Captain Marvel returns on July 28 in The Marvels , also featuring the 2022 Disney+ series' Kamela Khan. Brie Larson returns as Captain Marvel in the sequel, along with Teyonah Parris as Monica Rambeau and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury. The MCU is notorious for not letting too much info slip too early, so there's not a lot of insight into what the plot will be.
Will DC finally pass the MCU in 2023?
While DC will be ahead four-to-three in 2023 theatrical releases, the MCU will also be releasing four live-action series on Disney Plus: Secret Invasion in the spring, Echo and Loki Season 2 in the summer, and Ironheart in the fall. That's seven highly anticipated MCU projects to DC's four.
On top of that, the MCU has a clear plan going forward, having the rest of the Multiverse Saga (at least nine more movies and a handful of series) planned through 2026. For the foreseeable future, the MCU still reigns in the superhero genre.