Ava DuVernay and James Wan DC movies both pulled from slate

Ava DuVernay's New Gods and James Wan's Aquaman spinoff, The Trench have ceased development at the mandate of Warner Bros. and DC Films.

Warner Bros. and DC Films have withdrawn Ava DuVernay's New Gods and James Wan's Aquaman spinoff, The Trench from their slate of upcoming releases.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the two films have been dropped by the studios, with a statement from Warner Bros. and DC reading: "As part of our DC slate, some legacy development titles including New Gods and The Trench will not be moving forward."

It went on: "We thank our partners Ava DuVernay, Tom King, James Wan and Peter Safran for their time and collaboration during this process and look forward to our continued partnership with them on other DC stories," adding: "The projects will remain in their skillful hands if they were to move forward in the future."

The studios have not commented on the reason for the change in plans, but insiders told THR that there was no apparent spot on the upcoming DC slate for either film, so executives believed it was best not to leave the filmmakers suspended in development without an end-date in mind. Sources also suggested to the publication that the upcoming Aquaman sequel, due in December 2022 and also to be directed by Wan, was a sufficient exploration of the Atlantean kingdoms, although Warner Bros. could return to the underwater world in the future should audiences have demand for it.

DuVernay had been progressing New Gods with acclaimed comic book writer Tom King since 2018. The film would have seen the comic book characters created by the late artist Jack Kirby brought to life.

The director took to Twitter to express her disappointment at the news, writing alongside a photo of herself with King: "Tom, I loved writing NEW GODS with you. I’m upset that the saga of Barda, Scott, Granny, Highfather and The Furies ends this way."

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