Looks like fans were right to be concerned.
With Warner Bros. Discovery facing big financial losses in markets and its CEO David Zaslav dealing with massive online criticism, the studio appears to have delayed two major blockbuster sequels: 'Shazam' and 'Aquaman'.
'Shazam: Fury of the Gods' is now shifted to March 17, 2023, while 'Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom' is delayed up until December 25 of the same year. The Shazam movie was initially slated for this year's December release, while 'Aquaman 2' was expected to hit screens on the date 'Shazam' now occupies.
Reports about the two movies' potential delay have emerged weeks earlier, with Zaslav affirming the company's confidence in the films but adding that the studio can make them even better. The new owner's strategy envisages cost-cutting and a focus on theatrical-scale movies – something that has already killed 'Batgirl', which was planned for streaming services but ended up getting shelved.
Warner Bros. is on track to make even more changes. For instance, 'Salem's Lot' has been taken off its April 21, 2023 slot, with no new date announced yet. At the same time, New Line's 'House Party' was dated for December 9, 2022, 'Evil Dead Rise' – for April 21, 2023, and 'The Nun 2' scheduled for September 8, 2023.
Zaslav's cost-cutting strategy, as well as his ambitions to bring the DCEU up to the Marvel level, has already prompted skepticism and outrage among fans. Besides, the new owner already has to deal with Warner Bros. stocks being down 50% since April. As of Friday, the company lost some $2.39 billion in market cap.
At the same time, one of Warner Bros.' hopefuls, 'The Flash', is still mired in controversy because of lead actor Ezra Miller's legal troubles. Miller has already apologized and pledged to seek help after being accused of harassment, grooming, and kidnapping. But Warner Bros. is yet to directly address the controversy. As of now, 'The Flash' June 2023 release date remains unchanged.